Friday, January 30, 2009
Wednesday, January 28, 2009
May Your words sink and dwell
May You visit me with parables,
like the Woman at the Well
May Your glory flow within me
to the point where I can't tell - where it ends
May you never exhaust listening,
to my never ending prayers
May the stairs I tread keep going up
May my fellowship with You never be interrupted
May Your light burn my efforts to take my own breath
I wanna give You all I am until there's nothing left
I wanna be with you because without You, it hurts
I wanna memorize your word--not because I have to, but because it works
I want my bloodstream to mix with your living Being
I want fresh eyes to compliment what I am seeing
And if my vessel must be broken,
then I'll take the fragments and use them as tokens
And with the Holy Spirit I'll get dressed
I'll get equipped and built up to enter Your rest
May Your vision never leave me
May your words sink and dwell
May you visit me with parables,
like the Woman at the Well.
Monday, January 26, 2009
they stained your hands
with your own blood
they crushed your bones with
mighty blows of envy and hate
not realizing that your royal blood
was being spilled, and
spoiled to the ground
they persecuted you, the lamb
the holy sacrifice, the dove of life and
perhaps if they knew you
then they wouldn't be afraid
to love your sacrifice
perhaps, if they knew you
they would've torn their robes
and soaked up your blood
perhaps if they knew you
they would've died, too
Saturday, January 24, 2009
I came across this quote, and I was like, "Whoa!" It just reminded me to be mindful of the things I consume in this life. To read my Bible and consume, memorize and walk out what it says, daily. To speak life over myself and not curses. To work hard at filtering what enters my ears and what passes through my eyes. To be mindful of what I dance to because dancing is a powerful means of worship. To stay fired up and diligent.
Thursday, January 22, 2009
The road seemed endless, dusty--cranky. The words in my heart are saturated with the emotions that once flooded my mind. You've taken away my love's, my thoughts, my insecurities, my hurts, pains, worries, doubts and shame...And filled me with you--more of you.
i love you. let your heart beat within me. draw near so I can adore you. teach me obedience so I can prosper. Cause my face to shine as I cling to your life and your words. I arrest my will to radiate your deepest beauty, your thoughts and your life.
Wednesday, January 21, 2009
When I am at my worst, You are at Your best. And when I am at my best, You are still yet marvelous, glorious and spectacular. When I feel helpless in this life, You change my circumstance. When I am low, Oh Lord, and alone, You are there to be a friend comforting every need. When negative thoughts captivate me, You swoop in and swoon me. You cover me. You battle for me. You love me. When my path is broken, You fix my lips to reconstruct its nature - my nature. When my best friends and family abandon me and who I've become, you welcome me into Your family. At my lows and at my highs, I will praise You still. I will murder my flesh to cry out like the rocks cry out every day. You make my life complete. You are all that I need. You are my everything. All of life is about You. Your goodness overshadows me. You're everything I breathe. And now I know my heart beats for you. You make me feel loved, surrounded and special. I have dedicated my life to You. I live to make You known. The joy you bring has wiped my tears away. And in the end, You're all I want to be. Selah.
Tuesday, January 20, 2009
When my mother carried me in her womb, there were many people trying to influence her to abort me. When she was pregnant with me, she pretty much carried the pregnancy alone and with little support. God's plan for my life is great, and the enemy wanted to take me out before I could even get started... I guess you don't need me to tell you if I were born or not because I'm here!
they tried to:
lie on me
keep me from being... me
but they failed
I am here.
Monday, January 19, 2009
Let's make it happen... My niece's fear was immediately quenched when she grasped the idea of "Big Jesus" protecting her. She immediately let go of what her little mind knew to be true, and she grasped hold of the idea of Jesus, someone she can't see, protecting her. WOW! She saw Jesus as bigger than the sea, bigger than the shark and bigger than her fear or intimidation. Not only that, but when she grabbed hold of that truth, she was ready to "make it happen." She was ready to see Big Jesus do it!
I just have one word: FAITH!
Sunday, January 18, 2009
Go Terri; it's your birthday!
Friday, January 16, 2009
I was maybe 1 and a half years old. Someone had
given me a little 'tea set' as a gift and it was one
of my favorite toys. Daddy was in the living room
engrossed in the evening news and my brother was
playing nearby in the living room when I brought
Daddy a little cup of 'tea', which was just water.
After several cups of tea and lots of praise for
such yummy tea, my Mom came home. My Dad made her
wait in the living room to watch me bring him a cup
of tea, because it was 'just the cutest thing!!' My
Mom waited, and sure enough, here I come down the
hall with a cup of tea for Daddy and she watches him
drink it up, then says, 'Did it ever occur to you
that the only place that baby can reach to get water
is the toilet??'
Thursday, January 15, 2009
My interpretation: I painted this to encourage anyone who's ever walked to or experienced the edge of something. In this painting, she walked to the edge, a dreamer, full of faith, wind blowing toward her, raging sea beneath and a storm above... she's confident and standing tall against all odds. Her hair blowing back represents God-given wisdom and her cape represents His security. Every stroke I used was geared toward an upward motion because there is nothing in this painting meant to be negative. God is the lifter of our head. He is the master at directing our steps. Just because we come to the end of something or can't see where the road turns - doesn't mean that He's not there. God is with us, always. Have faith to know that when you get to the edge, He'll take it from there.
Wednesday, January 14, 2009
There's something significant about meeting God in the morning. The Bible speaks of countless times where many rose early in the morning to be alone with God. As a result, many battles were won, God was heard audibly and in private, purposes and visions were revealed and instruction was given and carried out. The morning represents a fresh perspective and a new start. It's the perfect time to get alone with God - to hear Him, speak to Him. There's no better feeling than walking with God in the cool of the day. My prayer:
You are high and exalted, Lord. You are sovereign, merciful and just. There is no limit to Your word, no limit to Your love. You are abundant and faithful. Father, align our hearts with you today. Open us up and fill us with more of You. Dance with us in the cool of the day. We desire to be intimate with you, to love you and befriend you. We want to make You known with who we are and with what we do. Father, I ask that you purify us. We want to experience your presence. Come, Lord. Give us a new hunger and a new thirst for You. Awaken our hearts, eyes and ears to the things You're speaking about. And that fire that burns within us - may it be unquenchable. God, you know what's in our hearts and what concerns us, Father, carry any burdens we try to hold ourselves. Give us peace and free us from heaviness. Be the center of our worship and the meaning of our cause and affect. Tear down all our fears. Bring us into your light. Father, helps us to glorify you by being selfless and open to all you have for us. Give us a renewed purpose. Amen.
Tuesday, January 13, 2009
When I was in 7th grade, I was a champion 200-yard dash sprinter. I was ranked high in my class, and I felt good about myself. As the end of the track season approached, I ended up qualifying for the state track meet to compete and run against other 7th graders in the state, in the 200-yard dash. To prepare, I met with my coach every day after school; I trained: ran, lifted weights, did calisthenics, etc. I spent every day practicing, training and soaking up what my coach taught me about track-and-field.
I remember being overly confident the day of the state track meet. When it was my turn to race, I walked over to my coach, laced up my new Payless Shoe store ProWings (that's all I could afford back in the day), and tucked my red and white school t-shirt inside of my apple red track shorts. I was calm, overly confident and already envisioning myself with a 1st place ribbon. After lacing up my shoes, I stood in front of my coach smacking my favorite flavor of Bubble Yum bubble gum (grape) and twirling the Strawberry Shortcake barrette clipped to my ponytail. I had a swagger in my stance. "Alright coach," I said. "What should I do?" My coach had a lot of confidence in me. He knew I could win every race I competed in. He encouraged me and told me exactly what to do to win. "Terri," he said. "When the starter gun goes off, stay low out of the blocks, pick up speed as fast as you can and then sprint hard to the finish line. Remember your technique." After blowing a few bubbles as I listened intently to my coaches prompting, I said, "Okay coach. I got this."
The 200-yard dash was about to begin and I was perfectly positioned at the starting line. To my right was an old friend of mine who attended school in another city. As the other racers began setting up for the race, my friend leaned into me. "Terri," she whispered. "Everybody knows you're gonna win this race. You should give everybody a head start and start jogging when the gun goes off. We know you're gonna win anyway but at least give us a chance." My friend's suggestion spoke to my pride and I soberly planned to oblige.
You could have heard a pin drop around the stadium as we got into position for the race. The announcer made his call: "On your mark...get set..." [bang!] When the sound of the gun's blank ricocheted in the afternoon air, we took off. The racers around me immediately honed in on their technique and began sprinting toward the finish line. I, on the other hand, started the race in a mild jog... as if it were beneath me to sprint like the other runners. All I could think about was the challenge my friend gave to me about "giving the other runners a chance." But, what I didn't realize was that my so-called friend was actually baiting me. Needless to say, as I jogged out of the starting blocks, the other racers sprinted ahead of me. By the time I tried to pick up speed, it was too late. I came in last place. The look on my coaches face was one of complete shock. "What happened?!" He shouted. "Why did you jog? What happened to your form? What happened to your technique? What about the training and everything I taught you for this very moment? You could have won if you had of stuck to and remembered the plan." Back then, I was ashamed and embarrassed for losing that race. I quit track-and-field after that, and didn't learn the lesson from that incident until recently.
This life is essentially one big track meet. It's a race. How many times have we walked with God, trained with Him, read His word, prayed, worshiped, communed in relationship, delighted in Him, etc. only to get to the race (bad day, not enough time, fight, lack of finances, discouraged, broken...) and be distracted - forgetting everything we learned in training? The enemy would love to see us distracted and completely caught off-guard like I was in that race back in 7th grade. He wants us to be unfocused and irrational. The enemy doesn't want us to be successful, so he'll distract us with ideas and positions that "look good" or seem like it could be in our favor, only for it to be to our detriment. God wants us to win. He wants us to be successful. He wants us to train hard so we can be ready during the time of battle. He wants us to put on the Armor of God, walk with seasoned speech and learn how to swing the sword of the Spirit. Bottom line, be encouraged when faced with a distraction that takes you out of your element. Trust that the training and instruction you get from God will carry you. And, when you begin a race, don't look to the right or the left; keep your eyes on the finish line and I guarantee you, you'll win.
Monday, January 12, 2009
It's tough sometimes; hearing from you. I've been told many times to practice the art of hearing from God, but I often feel as if I fail you in that area. Lord, I drove to the beach to be closer to you today. I even walked to the water's edge and dared you to speak to me. Thank you, Lord, for meeting me there. At the beach, I saw you in the waves. I felt your emotion in the wind, and I even experienced your happiness when a couple's puppy trotted up next to me seemingly happy just being free. I love you, Lord. Thank you for the lesson with the seashells. You said, “See, Terri. Even though these shells are broken, I still have a purpose for them.” I cried warm tears. That analogy broke me even more. My feelings of insecurity were quenched when I grasped our conversation. I love it when you care enough about me to hang out with me. You are the ultimate friend. When I mess up, you don't ignore me, leave me, talk about me or fear me. Instead, you love me, teach me, forgive me and chastise me. Thank you Lord for being magnificent. For being refreshing. For being, you. Because even when I'm weak, when my words fail, when I fall on the alter, you still dominate my self. You hear beyond the words I bring. People fail you and I fail people, but I feel confident in knowing you won't fail me. This is a journal entry about brokenness that I wrote at Sandbridge beach a while back...
I was so broken that day, and I remember feeling so insignificant. Since moving to the east coast, my home away from home has always been the beach. I go there when I want to feel closer to God. I go there to spill my deepest concerns and fears. I even yell sometimes. But mainly, I go there to cry. This day, I went to the beach because I remember feeling broken and alone. I needed to be filled because I felt as if I was running out of gas. I felt like I had no direction, like what I did and said didn't matter. I felt like a broken vessel waiting to be thrown away because in my mind, being broken meant being useless.
As I walked along the edge of the water, I remained silent. In my heart, I was reaching and searching for anything. I had so much emotion to convey, I couldn't put words into speech. Instead, I walked silently, but I'm sure my spirit was speaking to God even though I couldn't. After a few moments of quiet, I noticed that the sand was filled with many broken sea shells of every shape and color. I remember looking around hoping to find a whole shell instead of the partials I saw. As I looked, God said, “Have you found a whole shell yet?” “No, I haven't,” I said out loud. Suddenly, I saw a shell in the shape of an oval. You could tell that the shell had been worn by the water and the other shells around it. It was broken, discolored but still beautiful. I walked over to the shell and picked it up, and when I did, God said to me, “See, Terri. Even though these shells are broken, I still have a purpose for them.”
Here's the lesson God taught me: The shells that come out of the sea were once attached to sea creatures. Over time, those sea creatures were either eaten, died or somehow detached from their shells. Moving with the current of the ocean, the shells eventually wash up on shore. Sand is, in essence, loose particles of hard broken rock. The force of the water, erosion and weather crush seashells, which ultimately turn into sand. No matter what happens to us, God's purpose is ever-evolving. No matter what turns we make, God's purpose is ever-evolving. No matter the failures or successes, God's purpose is ever-evolving. When we are broken, battered, abused, left out and forgotten, God says that He has a significant purpose on the other side. When we are broken, God will use that to turn us into a different vessel. He'll use that brokenness and reshape us into what He desired in the first place. Being broken doesn't take away from our beauty, our talents or our goals. Truth is, being broken only means that God gets to reshape you. He gets to breathe new breath into you. As we move with the current of life, we have to remember that the direction we're traveling is being steered by God. In order to be reshaped, we've got to be broken.