grace

i know when there is separation because i feel longing
every moment i am outside of you
with each beat of my heart there is pain
and i sense your absence even when i know you’re near

as i seek what only you can give in every place but your arms
the darkness closes in tighter around me
until i am stumbling over my own feet tripping over myself
but still convinced that i can find my way out alone

as i approach the edge i pause for a moment to look back
needing to see your face
desperate for your voice in my ear and in my selfishness and impatience
i jump without considering what may await at the bottom

the fall is much farther than i considered it could be
and instead of the flying sensation i had expected to overtake me
there is only numbness
and i cannot speak because words will not come

my stomach turns, and i feel sick having shrouded myself in this lie
my mind wars with the truth but it is too late
and i am now powerless to stop the fall
i am introduced to regret, an acquaintance i’ve never known

upon hitting the bottom, i am shocked to find that i feel no impact
there is no sudden death, no cracking of bones
only stillness and silence and the absolute despair
that accompanies the deepest loneliness

tears become a river, and my thoughts are a hurricane
inside my head i see myself sitting before you
both of us staring, neither speaking
and you’re waiting

i want to cry out to you, to run to your arms and apologize
to beg for your mercy – but i cannot move
my tongue doesn’t dare dance, and i hang my head
trembling and ashamed

i await your anger, your fury, your wrath
but there is none
your silence is deafening and my ears pulse
my head heavy with the weight of what i’ve done

your arms slowly open as i weep
your eyes never leave me and no hard word is spoken
as i lift my gaze to your eyes
i see understanding and a quiet reminder

my heart whispers as i begin to understand
you understand my weakest and dirtiest of conditions
you are the constant and i am ever needing you
you have never left me alone

you forgive me even in my defiance
you accept me even in my failure
you want me even in my unholiness
you love me even in my unworthiness

you are mine and in you is all i have ever needed
your arms hold me and the fear departs
banished by the light as you whisper your love for me
and i understand the meaning of grace

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Obedience > Sacrifice

“I write to you, dear children, so that you will not sin…”
See, the gates were locked to Heaven, but He came to let us in.
With power from the Father, Jesus overcame the grave,
To let us share in victory, to end our time as slaves.
His life on Earth was blameless. He never went astray.
He lived as our example. He came to show us the way.

The world would have you think that we cannot escape,
That sin is just a part of us, and we’ll always be this way,
That Jesus gave His life and made our sins His own,
And we can keep on sinning and sinning and sinning…
And still spend eternity with Him before His throne.
Our adversary whispers that God will understand
Why we do the things we do, even as we disobey His commands.

But I am here to tell you, that the Word does disagree.
You see, Jesus calls for obedience, that we are holy, as is He.
If we claim to have fellowship with Him, yet we walk in the dark,
We lie and do not know the truth. We do not know His heart.
So this is how we can discern that we are indeed in Him,
We must walk as Jesus walked. We must be free from sin.

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A Call to Arms

We are drowning in a world that’s lost in itself.
We get stuck in this rut that is the daily grind until we’ve got nothing left
But energy drinks and pills to keep us running,
And still we’re always on empty,
Trying to coast on the fumes because we’re down to our last penny.
We keep striving and driving trying to catch that almighty dollar
All the while ignoring what the Almighty says He’s got to offer.
We abandon peace for possessions, sending us into faith recession
That ultimately only ends in confession, because we lack perfection.

Fast forward. We’re spinning our tires in the same old, same old.
Day in and day out. Going to school like we’re told.
Getting a job, like we’re told.
Buying all the pretty things like we’re told. Conforming…like we’re told.
One day we wake up and realize that we blend in,
That we’re replaying our days over and over and it’s a circle without an end.

We find ourselves asking…why am I here? What’s this life about?
This old routine
Is wasting our time. We’re not moving. We’re stuck.
We’ve lost sight of our dreams.
And then, as if by divine revelation
We remember a word once given to the congregation.
“I know the plans I have for you,” says the LORD.
“They’re prosperous and filled with hope, so you can look forward
To a future of abundance if you’ll just answer my call.
I know you don’t have much to give, but give Me your all
And I’ll take it and twist it and turn it into wonders anew.
I’ll take your old life and burn it cause I love you.
You’re not who you once were. You’re My beloved. You’re Mine.
I bought you and cleaned you up and I made you divine.
So put on your crown, love. Rise up to your purpose.
I gave all I had cause to Me you were always worth it.”

With tears in our eyes, and our wonder renewed,
We wait for God to give us instructions for what we must do.
He hands us this armor and we ask what it’s for.
He says to suit up, cause we’re going to war,
And instantly fear grips our hearts and our souls.
Fight? But, God… I’m afraid! I don’t know
How to fight or what to do or what to say.
He says, “Don’t you fear. I’ll be right here every step of the way.
This war is not one you’ll fight in the flesh,
But in the spirit, and trust Me. My army’s the best.
It’s already been won, but our enemy’s hard headed.
He doesn’t yet realize he’s already been bested.
See it was over the moment I took all your sin.
And I overcame Hell. There was no way he’d ever win.
But until I come to pick you up and carry you home
I need you to fight so that your brothers and sisters will know
They’re not alone.
So every day before your feet hit the floor,
Put on all your armor, ready to fight as you walk out the door.
Carry My banner to the places you go.
Wear My love in your heart so that everyone you meet will know
Who I am and what I’m about so that they can come home too.
When I conquered the grave it wasn’t only for you
But for every single person who’d call out My name
And ask Me to take all their suffering and their shame.
But how will they make it home if they never hear
The word I’ve put on your lips to take to their ears?
Suit up, soldier. Take your rightful place
Among the heavenly armies and the angelic ranks.
I will give you all that you need in My Word.
Sharpen it daily, for it is your sword.”

Brothers and sisters, we are called to a purpose.
We are destined for glory, even though we don’t deserve it.
God’s grace covered us in our darkest of times
So that we could carry His love to the hopeless and the blind.
So put on your armor and take up your cross.
We have to get out there and start reclaiming the lost.

This isn’t the end. It’s the beginning of our story.
Forever we’ll praise Him. To God be all glory.

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