Remember Me

“Remember Me” by Andrew Peterson

Lord, remember me when You come into Your kingdom
Lord, remember me when You come into Your kingdom

Who can ascend the hill of the Lord?
The one who utters no untrue word
Whose hands are clean, whose heart is pure
Who can ascend that hill?

There is none righteous, no not one
We are prodigal daughters and wayward sons
We don’t know the half of the hurt we’ve done
The countless we have killed

Our priests are cheats, our prophets are liars
We know what the law requires
But we pile our sins up higher and higher
Who can ascend that hill?

And I am a sheep who has gone astray
I have turned aside to my own way
Have mercy on me, Son of David
Lord, remember me when You come into Your kingdom
Lord, remember me when You come into Your kingdom

Now hear the voice of the Word made man
The spotless sacrificial Lamb
“A body You gave me, here I am
I have come to do Your will”

And no one takes my life, you see
I lay it down now willingly
And I will draw all men to me
When I ascend that hill

On Sunday You came as a King
On Monday washed the temple clean
On Tuesday You told of what will be
On Wednesday You waited patiently
On Thursday You said it is time
I’ll drink this cup ’cause it is mine
On Friday, Lord, You poured the wine

Like a thief on the cross, as He hung there dying
For crimes, there were no use denying
While the righteous Judge hung right beside him
How could I not recognize You?
How could I not recognize You?
How could I not recognize… my Lord?
My Lord, remember me when You come into Your kingdom
Lord, remember me when You come into Your kingdom

Just days ago the sky was stone
The trees were standing stripped to the bone
You could hear creation groan

But I write these words on an April day
And the earth is drinking the early rain
The hills remember green again

And we’ve heard this story all our lives
Still, we feel the pain of the crucified
And the end still comes as a surprise

But before the breath there in the tomb
Before our joy sprang from the womb
You saw a day that’s coming soon
When the Son will stand on the mount again
With an army of angels at His command
And the earth will split like the hull of a seed
Wherever Jesus plants His feet

And up from the earth, the dead will rise
Like spring trees robed in petals of white
Singing the song of the radiant bride

And we will always be, always be, always be with the Lord
We will always be, always be, always be with the Lord
We will always… (we will always be, always be)
Be with Jesus (always be with the Lord)

My Lord, remember me (we will always be, always be)
When You come into Your kingdom (always be with the Lord)
Lord, remember me (we will always be, always be)
When You come into Your kingdom (always be with the Lord)

One New Thing for 2016

New Year’s Resolutions. Though many fade away by February, I love how some people continue to make them every year and give it their all. I’m joining the club!

This year I am going to try and give God 1.5-2 hours a day. I know this won’t be possible everyday, and I may not reach 2017 with much success at this. But it will be my main mission. Why, you ask? Well, one of my favorite bloggers, The Peaceful Wife, wrote this and I don’t think I can explain it better than her:

“I must very consciously set aside time for God and seek to make Him my priority. I need a minimum of about 30 minutes, but I do much better if I have 1.5 -2 hours per day with God. I want to seek many more of the 1.5-2 hour times this year.

I have to have that time with Him alone where I sit at His feet, allow Him to restore my spirit, and drink Him in. I must have time to recharge, to praise Him, to thank Him, to seek Him, to get to know Him more, to desire Him above all else, and to be filled with His Spirit.

If I attempt to minister when I am spiritually depleted and I am operating in my own strength, I will not be a blessing to anyone – and I may actually hurt other people more than help them.” -The Peaceful Wife: April Cassidy

quiet time bibleI admit, I feel anxious in sharing this resolution because of possible judgments made by you, beloveds. I know it’s silly, but I fear you thinking I’m not busy enough, not working hard enough in life if I have 1.5-2 hours free to spend with God. I want to explain myself, but I’m painstakingly going to resist because another sub-goal/resolution of mine is to fear people less and fear God more. So with that, beloveds, know that I love you and I am thankful for you! And feel free to keep me accountable with this resolution…I need all the help I can get!

Father, Help Me To…

Prayer by Bryan Jeffery Leech

Father, help me to TALK like a Christian:

to speak in such a way that I build up another person’s confidence in himself, instead of tearing down his reputation.

Father, help me to DRIVE like a Christian:

to be watchful and careful lest I cause harm to someone else on the highways.

Father, help me to GIVE like a Christian:

without thought of return, without anyone knowing what I do, and with Your approval as sufficient reward.

Father, help me to DRESS like a Christian:

by not attracting attention to myself for being too fashionable or too causal; and help me to show by my appearance that I want people to know me for what I am inside myself.

Father, help me to SLEEP like a Christian:

at peace with myself because sin is forgiven; and at peace with others because I do not allow my anger to last through a day.

Father, help me to EAT like a Christian:

to eat healthily, to eat moderately, to eat gratefully, giving thanks to You who provide my food, and for the one who prepares my food.

Father, KEEP ME from being so pious that I keep You out of the practical areas of life. Be with me when I am alone, and when I shed my inhibitions, lest in those moments I cancel out all that I seem to be when I’m on my best behavior.

Father, I ASK THIS because I follow a Master who was never guilty of the slightest wrong-doing, and who always showed His love in the small details of living. Amen.

It’s Great To Be Weak

“An interviewer once asked Edith Schaeffer, author and wife of evangelist and philosopher Francis Schaeffer, “Who is the greatest Christian woman alive today?” She replied, “We don’t know her name. She is dying of cancer somewhere in a hospital in India.” I’m talking about that woman. Underneath her obedient life is a sense of helplessness. It has become part of her very nature…almost like breathing. Why? Because she is weak. She feels her restless heart, her tendency to compare herself with others. She is shocked at how jealousy can well up in her. She notices how easily the world gets its hooks into her. In short, she distrusts herself. When she looks at other people, she sees the same struggles. The world, the flesh, and the Devil are too much for her. The result? Her heart cries out to God in prayer. She needs Jesus…

…Less mature Christians have little need to pray. When they look at their hearts (which they rarely do), they seldom see jealousy. They are barely aware of their impatience. Instead, they are frustrated by all the slow people they keep running into. Less mature Christians are quick to give advice. There is no complexity to their worlds because the answers are simple–“just do what i say, and your life will be easier.”

Surprisingly, mature Christians feel less mature on the inside. When they hear Jesus say, “Apart from me you can do nothing (Jn. 15:5), they nod in agreement. They reflect on all the things they’ve done without Jesus, which have become nothing. Mature Christians are keenly aware that they can’t raise their kids. It’s a no-brainer. Even if they are perfect parents, they still can’t get inside their kids’ hearts. That’s why strong Christians pray more.

John of Landsburg, a sixteenth-century Catholic monk, summarized this well in his classic A Letter from Jesus Christ. He imagined Jesus speaking personally to us:

“I know those moods when you sit there utterly alone, pining, eaten up with unhappiness, in a pure state of grief. You don’t move towards me but desperately imagine that everything you have ever done has been utterly lost and forgotten. This near-despair and self-pity are actually a form of pride. What you think was a state of absolute security from which you’ve fallen was really trusting too much in your own strength and ability…what really ails you is that things simply haven’t happened as you expected and wanted. In fact I don’t want you to rely on your own strength and abilities and plans, but to distrust them and to distrust yourself, and to trust me and no one and nothing else. As long as you rely entirely on yourself, you are bound to come to grief. You still have a most important lesson to learn: your own strength will no more help you to stand upright than propping yourself on a broken reed. You must not despair of me. You may hope and trust in me absolutely. My mercy is infinite.”

-A Praying Life by Paul E. Miller

The Valley of Vision- Christ Alone

O GOD,

Thy main plan, and the end of thy will
is to make Christ glorious and beloved
in heaven
where he is now ascended,
where one day all the elect will behold his glory
and love and glorify him for ever.

Though here I love him but little,
may this be my portion at last.
In this world thou hast given me a beginning,
one day it will be perfected in the realm above.

Thou hast helped me to see and know Christ,
though obscurely,
to take him, receive him,
to possess him, love him,
to bless him in my heart, mouth, life.

Let me study and stand for discipline,
and all the ways of worship,
out of love for Christ;
and to show my thankfulness;
to seek and know his will from love,
to hold it in love,
and daily to care for and keep this state of heart.

Thou hast led me to place all my nature
and happiness
in oneness with Christ,
in having heart and mind centred only on him,
in being like him in communicating good
to others;
This is my heaven on earth,
But I need the force, energy, impulses of thy Spirit
to carry me on the way to my Jerusalem.

Here, it is my duty
to be as Christ in this world,
to do what he would do,
to live as he would live,
to walk in love and meekness;
then would he be known,
then would I have peace in death.

Lord, Let Not Our Souls Be Busy Inns

An Advent Prayer:

“Lord, let not our souls be busy inns that have no room for thee or thine,
But quiet homes of prayer and praise, where thou mayest find fit company,
Where the needful cares of life are wisely ordered and put away,
And wide, sweet spaces kept for thee; where holy thoughts pass up and down
And fervent longings watch and wait thy coming.”

– Julian of Norwich (1340-1426)

If I Could Have Just a Little More Free Time…

This Christmas trip “there and back again” (home, that is) was similar to the past several trips home in this particular way–I went away with some books. I can’t help it! When I was younger, the family room held its appeal largely because of the T.V. But as I’ve grown, the T.V. has faded in importance (though I still love me a good Bleak House movie marathon), and the gem of a library in the family room has become more and more precious. It’s a well-hidden treasure, folks. Admittedly, I have a stockpile of books, which belong to that library, taking up residence in my PA room. I need to start bringing them back soon. I hereby declare, here and now, that I will return at least one book during my next trip home. I promise, Mom and Dad!

The book that gripped me this time was The Prayers of Susanna Wesley. She is the mother of John and Charles Wesley. It is clear her rich faith led the way for her sons. This prayer has been particularly on my mind since I read it. It has to do with busyness, which has been my companion during graduate school life. Though I anticipate the busyness will ease a little after school, it will still be there, for work and toil accompanies life in this world. So Susanna, take it away:

(c) Epworth Old Rectory; Supplied by The Public Catalogue Foundation

O God, I find it most difficult to preserve a devout and serious temper of mind in the midst of much worldly business. Were I permitted to choose a state of life, or positively to ask of Thee anything in this world, I would humbly choose and beg that I might be placed in such a station wherein I might have daily bread with moderate care and that I might have more leisure to retire from the world without injuring those dependent upon me. 

Yet I do not know whether such a state of life would really be the best for me; nor am I assured that if I had more leisure I should be more zealously devoted to Thee and serve Thee better than now. Therefore, O Lord, show me that it is undoubtedly best to keep my mind in habitual submission and resignation to Thee, who art infinitely, incomprehensibly wise and good; who canst-not possibly err, but dost certainly know what is best for Thy children, and how and where to fix the bounds of their habitation; who has given to us Thy word, that all things shall work together for good to those that love Thee. May that word support and calm my mind in all adverse or uneasy circumstances of life. Enable me to take courage and to suffer not my mind to faint or grow weary, knowing that Thou, my God, art no hard master, and though it may seem best to Thine infinite wisdom to determine me to such a station as will necessarily involve me in much business and thus daily exercise my faith and patience, yet enable me to rest in the assurance that all things shall at last have a happy issue, if my heart be but sincerely devoted to Thee. Amen.