Nevertheless God

Most people desire friendship with Happiness. I know I do. And we yearn for acquaintance with Joy.

Do we not?

Joy, so easily sneaks out the back door  when Distress and Restlessness show their heads and appear.

And where is Rest? Did we not invite him at the close of the day? Where did he go when everyone else was sleeping?

With a tap of a finger, or a click with the thumb, women “roar” and men “parade” themselves, places are torn down.  Trouble surrounds.  But, there’s a voice of Refuge shouting, “Turn it off! Turn it off! Stop and remember what God’s Word has to say:

our bodies had no rest, . . . we were troubled on every side. Outside were conflicts, inside were fears. Nevertheless God, who comforts the downcast, comforted us . . .” (2 Corinthians 7:5,6. NKJV).  

Refuge reminds. His companion, Calm, follows close behind singing a song from age-old time:

“O soul are you weary and troubled. No light in the darkness you see. There’s a light for a look at the Savior and life more abundant and free. Turn your eyes upon Jesus. Look full in His wonderful face. And the things of earth will grow strangely dim, in the light of His glory and grace.” (Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus, Helen Lemmel (1863-1961).

Remember did come to my aid with a warning: “Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.Mark 14:38, NIV.

“O God,” I cry, “Remind me the promises. When the mountains quake, the trials mount, and Anxiety wants to be my best friend. Speak Lord, speak with mysteries deep.

“God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea, though its waters roar and foam and the mountains quake with their surging.”      Psalm 46:1-3.

Nevertheless God shows up. In His word, in old songs, in each breath that I take.  And He teaches me again to sing,

“Turn your eyes upon Jesus, look full in His wonderful face. And the things of earth will grow strangely dim, in the light of His glory and grace.”

Refuge came. He brought Calm along. With a Psalm and Song, I finally found Rest.

 “There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God,
    the holy place where the Most High dwells.
 God is within her, she will not fall;
    God will help her at break of day.
Nations are in uproar, kingdoms fall;
    he lifts his voice, the earth melts.

 The Lord Almighty is with us;
    the God of Jacob is our fortress.”

And this is where I found Joy.

  1. O soul, are you weary and troubled?
    No light in the darkness you see?
    There’s light for a look at the Savior,
    And life more abundant and free!

    • Refrain:
      Turn your eyes upon Jesus,
      Look full in His wonderful face,
      And the things of earth will grow strangely dim,
      In the light of His glory and grace.
  2. Through death into life everlasting
    He passed, and we follow Him there;
    O’er us sin no more hath dominion—
    For more than conqu’rors we are!
  3. His Word shall not fail you—He promised;
    Believe Him, and all will be well:
    Then go to a world that is dying,
    His perfect salvation to tell!   hymn by Helen Lemmel





Starting over


There is a time for “starting over.”

Even when a house is torn down, the foundation is left to build upon.

The foundation old and solid, the building all new. Gloriously new.

The past is the seasoned instruction manual. Not for dwelling deep, but for gleaning wisdom in the forward motions of hope and joy.

Starting over. With revelation of the preciousness of each breath.

I will write for my kids. Because the Lord told me so. Just as He said to Jeremiah so many years ago, “This is what the LORD, the God of Israel, says: ‘Write in a book all the words I have spoken to you. Jeremiah 30:2.

I frame words already written, tucked away under black leather covers. I bring out to light words in the old song books that are living through the ages of time.

I’m starting over, yet in reality, I’m continuing ahead.

So, I will write with each new day, what the Lord has shown me in His book. I will leave it at that and pray that God draws you near to Him with each moment of each day.

Matthew Henry in his commentary on Jeremiah 30:1-11 writes what I believe God wants to show me, and you, and all the children who take the time in God’s word and take note of what’s been heard:

Matthew Henry Commentary

30:1-11 Jeremiah is to write what God had spoken to him. The very words are such as the Holy Ghost teaches. These are the words God ordered to be written; and promises written by his order, are truly his word. He must write a description of the trouble the people were now in, and were likely to be in. A happy end should be put to these calamities . . .”

How glorious are the old words written! Does this not make our appetites yearn to taste and see the promises within?  Matthew Henry continues in his writings on Jeremiah 30, which encourage us today in the trials we endure:

“Though the afflictions of the church may last long, they shall not last always. The Jews shall be restored again. They shall obey, or hearken to the Messiah, the Christ, the Son of David, their King. The deliverance of the Jews from Babylon, is pointed out in the prophecy, but the restoration and happy state of Israel and Judah, when converted to Christ their King, are foretold; also the miseries of the nations before the coming of Christ. All men must honour the Son as they honour the Father, and come into the service and worship of God by him. Our gracious Lord pardons the sins of the believer, and breaks off the yoke of sin and Satan, that he may serve God without fear, in righteousness and true holiness before him all the remainder of his days, as the redeemed subject of Christ our King.”Jeremiah 30:2 Commentaries

This is it. This is why I write. I write for myself and perhaps someone else will benefit and grow in discovering treasured words under dusty covers.

I’m starting over, but I’m really just persevering on.

May we be faithful to take time to hear His voice. May we be faithful to talk to Him, to wrestle with Him. To seek Him evermore. Start over we will, with each new day.  Let us live the life He has for us.

God’s given us breath. Let us take the next breath He has given and read aloud God’s inspired wisdom:

Ecclesiastes 3:1-17.

There is a time for everything,
    and a season for every activity under the heavens:

    a time to be born and a time to die,
    a time to plant and a time to uproot,
    a time to kill and a time to heal,
    a time to tear down and a time to build,
    a time to weep and a time to laugh,
    a time to mourn and a time to dance,
    a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,
    a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing,
    a time to search and a time to give up,
    a time to keep and a time to throw away,
    a time to tear and a time to mend,
    a time to be silent and a time to speak,
    a time to love and a time to hate,
    a time for war and a time for peace.

What do workers gain from their toil? 10 I have seen the burden God has laid on the human race. 11 He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the human heart; yet[a] no one can fathom what God has done from beginning to end. 12 I know that there is nothing better for people than to be happy and to do good while they live. 13 That each of them may eat and drink, and find satisfaction in all their toil—this is the gift of God. 14 I know that everything God does will endure forever; nothing can be added to it and nothing taken from it. God does it so that people will fear him.

15 Whatever is has already been,
    and what will be has been before;
    and God will call the past to account.[b]

16 And I saw something else under the sun:

In the place of judgment—wickedness was there,
    in the place of justice—wickedness was there.

17 I said to myself,

“God will bring into judgment
    both the righteous and the wicked,
for there will be a time for every activity,
    a time to judge every deed.”

Read these words aloud. They are living: This is my comfort in my affliction, That Your word has revived me and given me life. (Psalm 119:50, Amplified).


The prayer in the hymn. The answer within: “Just from Jesus, simply taking …

Deep inside, tired. Deep within, weary. Like a wilted plant longing for reviving water. We hold out our hands, and our spirits seek God. In our weakness of faith, we cry out to Him.

And He hears our silent voices. He sees our seeking hearts. He breathes upon our frame mysterious peace though nothing changes.

Personally, as for me, deep inside my heart, I write what the Living God, through His glorious Spirit does, as I long for so much, time and time again. My morning prayer is written – from an age old hymn.

Not the first part, nor the middle – but the last thought becomes my prayer: “… O for grace to trust Thee more … O for grace to trust You more.” Silent words repeated over and again, but with wholehearted meaning and truthfulness: “O for grace, to trust You more.”

The next thing I know is a resurrection takes place. My eyes lift up and my whole countenance has change. “Tis so sweet to trust in Jesus.” This is the Spirit of God speaking: “Trust Me.”

“Trust, … Me.

I know the old words. What a treasure store. The Spirit brings them to my mind to answer and restore:“Yes, ’tis sweet to trust in Jesus,
Just from sin and self to cease
Just from Jesus simply taking
Life and rest, and joy and peace.”

Simply take from Jesus: life and rest, and joy and peace?

Then the realization is brought to mind, in my weariness, I’m not taking from Jesus – anything. Like stagnant waters with no movement and sound. But to my rescue at my soundless call, the Spirit woos me to remember His Song.

‘Tis so sweet to trust in Jesus,
Just to take Him at His Word
Just to rest upon His promise,
Just to know, “Thus saith the Lord!”

The next thing I know, my heart responds. Being reminded of my Love who is mine, evermore. And the song, though silent, stirs in my heart and revives me and prays the words I longed for:

Jesus, Jesus, how I trust Him!
How I’ve proved Him o’er and o’er
Jesus, Jesus, precious Jesus!
Oh, for grace to trust Him more!

Then those words, almost hidden, they are. Words that could be so easily missed – become highlighted to me and repeated again …

“Just from Jesus simply taking, life and rest. Joy and peace.” 

“Take from Me. Take from Me.” I feel my Jesus answer.

“I offer life. I offer rest. I offer joy and peace.”

What do we say, to the old hymn’s reminder? What is our response this day, this hour?

Let’s respond with the old words that are written, and be renewed in the spirit of our minds once again. Let us rejoice in the Lord, always – no matter the mess we’re in.

Let us sing, even aloud with our voices today,

“Jesus, Jesus, how I trust You. How I’ve proved You o’er and o’er Jesus, Jesus, precious Jesus! Oh, for grace to trust You more!”

“O for grace to trust You more.”

So, today I will go, knowing I will fail Him often. Especially in my trust in Him along the way. But there will be a day, when He calls me to meet Him, and I will finally be able to truthfully say:

“I’m so glad I learned to trust Him, Precious Jesus, Savior, Friend”

but today, I will believe with all my heart the hymn:

“And I know that He is with me,
Will be with me to the end.”

Let us sing with rejoicing and be ignited with praise:

Oh, how sweet to trust in Jesus,
Just to trust His cleansing blood
And in simple faith to plunge me
‘Neath the healing, cleansing flood!

Jesus, Jesus, how I trust Him!
How I’ve proved Him o’er and o’er
Jesus, Jesus, precious Jesus!
Oh, for grace to trust Him more!


Let’s be gloriously changed – Let’s choose to Praise

Let’s make the choice now, no matter the story. No matter the pains, the loss, the new worries.  To start the day with God and giving thanks is fine, but to end it in praise is victory, power, and brings a sound mind.

We be changed through the praise. God draws ever near, as we draw near to Him. Let our voices (aloud) ring clear.

“You are the LORD God Almighty. You are worthy. You are worthy. You are worthy to be praised.

You are Elohim, strong Creator of all the natural beauty we see.

We worship You God. Jehovah, I AM, (YHWH) self-existent, un-change-ing.

The Most High God, El-Elyon is worthy of our praise. There is none like You. Too much, too high, to great for our minds to comprehend and know.

But the Bible tells us, You loves us so.

We worship You Lord, for You alone are worthy. “The name of the LORD is a fortified tower; the righteous run to it and are safe.”(1) Worthy and  powerful – O so wonderful is Your Name.

We choose to think on things that are noble, right, and true, and altogether lovely. Yes, I choose to worship You:

Father, Son, You are Savior. We worship You Lord, You are Beginning and the End, the Lamb of God, and Friend.

We worship You Lord, for You alone are worthy. You are Eternal and Guide, You are King of all kings. You are Shelter. You are Judge. You are for us,  Cleansing.

You are Powerful, Faithful, Sustainer and Prince.

Majestic and Tower and Everlasting.

There is none like You God. You alone are worthy. I worship Your name, may nothing else take Your place.

You are Wisdom, Faithful, Merciful, Glorious.

You are Peace, Counselor, Healer, and Guard.

You are my Shepherd.

My Deliverer.

My Comforter.

Lord, You are my Hope.

You are my Joy. 

F-o-r-e-v-e-r, You are my Love.

You, God are gloriously magnificent.

You, “so loved the world,” (2) that Your Son You have sent.

I lift up Your name and proclaim with my voice  – “You, Lord God Almighty, are my Lord. You are my heart.”

I love You Lord Jesus, that You first loved me. Forgive me when I forget all that You are, all You did, and do:

Jehovah-Roi, the God who sees me. Jehovah-Shamma, Who promises to be there. Jehovah-Jirah, the LORD will provide.

O God, be my Adonai. My Lord, and Master, that I serve You -always.

I worship You Jesus. You have given me life. Today, this moment … for the rest of my life.

Amen. Amen. Let all the children say again,  “Amen.”

Praise goes before the battle and fight. Victory is won when I see God in all His might. Lead me Good Shepherd, as a sheep I often forget, to speak these words aloud and be transformed again, and … again.

(1) Proverbs 18:10, NIV.

(2) John 3:16.



Can you, will you, brush away the tears?

This morning, you have a choice. Does your heart yearn for God, do you pray, “Speak LORD, Your servant hears.” (1) or do you think you already know the words He has to say?

The thorns and thistles of life have brought temptation – to doubt and believe the LORD has left you alone on your way.

I write for myself, these words are for me. But if by chance they are speaking to you, read on as we wrestle with God together. Are we God’s ‘fair weather friends’ or are we still His – when the floods come or it’s typhoon weather?

“The Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not want . . .” Psalm 23:1. Do you hear Him call you to trust Him deeper still? Do you hear Him, are you willing to obey His will?

But, “I’m wanting Lord.” You say in your heart. “I’m needy and helpless. I don’t know how to trust.”

But, there is a willingness inside. There is, though weak, you cry out beside:

“Speak Lord, Your servant is listening,”

Trust in the Lord with all your heart
    and lean not on your own understanding;
in all your ways submit to him,
    and he will make your paths straight. Proverbs, the Book of wisdom. Chapter 3 verse 5 and 6. Do we dare submit and really believe this?

Believing God, is an Olympic feat, at best, “Make me to lie down and open my eyes that I might take notice that the pastures are green. Oh, God, I need rest.”

 Is this your prayer to the Lord in the morning? Will you be humble and yielded and give Him praise in the evening? What if nothing is going your way? Does that change God? Does that change your trust in Him?

We must remember, if ‘Jesus wept,'(2) then surely in this life, we will weep as well. “Dear Lord, don’t let my affliction grow greater than You. May I not seek sufficiency from wells, dry and broken, but may I go to You and listen to the words You have spoken.”

“Can you, will you, brush away the tears?” (I hear the Lord whisper this in my ears.)

 So will you reply, (as I ask myself this question), ‘Speak to me LORD, your servant hears.’ 

“But now, this is what the Lord says—
    he who created you, Jacob,
    he who formed you, Israel:
“Do not fear, for I have redeemed you;
    I have summoned you by name; you are mine.
When you pass through the waters,
    I will be with you;
and when you pass through the rivers,
    they will not sweep over you.
When you walk through the fire,
    you will not be burned;
    the flames will not set you ablaze.
For I am the Lord your God,
    the Holy One of Israel, your Savior.”(3) I have spoken. Do not be tempted to doubt. I will fill you with My Spirit that your faith will abound. Will you choose to make me Lord and submit? This is the power of God to you. I offer it . . .”

“For no one is cast off
    by the Lord forever.
 Though he brings grief, he will show compassion,
    so great is his unfailing love.
 For he does not willingly bring affliction
    or grief to anyone.” “This is My word from Lamentations. (4) Walk in this. Give fear no reservations.”

We can, we will, you and I together will cast all our cares upon our Shepherd today, and feed on His faithfulness and all He has to say:

in Psalm 23: The Lord is my Shepherd. I shall not want. He makes me lie down in green pastures. He leads me beside still waters. He restores my soul . . .  and Joshua 1:9: Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go.” 

We can, we will remember God is able – for now and for all time.

 During the days of Jesus’ life on earth, he offered up prayers and petitions with fervent cries and tears to the one who could save him from death, and he was heard because of his reverent submission.  Son though he was, he learned obedience from what he suffered and, once made perfect, he became the source of eternal salvation for all who obey him.”(5)

(1) 1 Samuel 3:9.

(2) John 11:35.

(3) Isaiah 43:1-3.

(4) Lamentations 3:31,32.

(5) Hebrews 5:7-9.

Written in 1745, timeless for me, myself, and I …

Old words opened and brought to the light of my eyes, speak as if they were penned today that I might recognize,

Something that’s contrary to my wants and ways through the years, and even despised by my open – yet oft’ times, closed ears:

“With broken heart and contrite sigh,
A trembling sinner, Lord, I cry;
Thy pard’ning grace is rich and free:
O God, be merciful to me!”

Written by William Williams in 1745, repentance in prose so that man might identify.

But our culture and we, are often offended by this. Only because the devil himself has twisted God’s grace.

“I smite upon my troubled breast,
With deep and conscious guilt oppressed;
Christ and His cross my only plea:
O God, be merciful to me!”

And on occasion, when I feel I’ve  got it all down, the next thing I know, is I’m on the ground.

“Far off I stand with tearful eyes,

Nor dare uplift them to the skies;
But Thou dost all my anguish see,
O God, be merciful to me!”

 William Williams in 1775 was simply writing what he felt inside, he penned from his heart, but it was also for this day for me,  for myself, for, I.

“With alms, or deeds that I have done,
Not one sin’s pardon can be won;
To Calvary alone I flee;
O God, be merciful to me!”

The exclamation point is not mine. It was written in this hymn and it must needs remain for all of time!

“And when redeemed from sin and hell,

With all the ransomed throng I dwell,
My raptured song shall ever be,
God has been merciful to me!”

Because God is merciful, gracious and compassionate. Because God paid it all and looks not on all my accomplishment. He is forever the same. He is ‘slow to anger’ and He hears my plea:

“O God, be merciful to me.” Today and tomorrow. Let me think on You and Your goodness, and forget all my sorrow.

That I might have a story, all for myself, that You Lord, heard my cry and have filled my life with Your love’s wealth.

Amen, and Amen. Does anyone agree? Let us all say together, Amen!

Hymn by William Williams, 1745.

It is always fitting to praise Him

“Praise the Lord.

How good it is to sing praises to our God,
    how pleasant and fitting to praise him!” Thus sings the chorus from the 147th Psalm. 

There are times when it’s easy to praise God.  And there are times, when Oh, we don’t feel like praising Him at all.  It can be a sacrifice.

But He tenderly makes it possible when He beautifully paints the morning sky. Can you hear Him ask your heart’s eye,

“Did you see the colors I formed for you? I Am the Lord and I love you.”

He puts joy and delight in a young child’s eye. “The life in this child is a reflection of Me. Be still, take notice. Take time and breathe.”

We work and we toil and we plod along in our lives, we move forward but the rhythm doesn’t always flow real nice, then all of a sudden there is a surprise.

Could it be, we actually won the prize!

Perhaps a sacrifice of praise is the best medicine always. God knows that His children are happy when they hear what He says:

How good it is to sing praises to our God,
    how pleasant and fitting to praise him!” 

Breathed out by God, Psalm 147 just might be words to lift weary hearts high as the heavens:

“The Lord builds up Jerusalem; he gathers the exiles of Israel.”

He doesn’t tear apart, He doesn’t divide. The Lord builds up, the Lord gathers, 

‘How good it is to sing praises to God, how pleasant and fitting to praise Him.’ (emphasis, mine!)

He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.

These are words from the Lord God Almighty,  we can believe Him faithful always, even when we can’t see.

He is good and He is worthy of our praise, when the sun shines and when the skies are dark with rain. He is the same, yesterday, today and forever. He loved us yesterday, He loves us today.

“He determines the number of the stars and calls them each by name.”

We can’t come close to number the stars, yet He knows the name for each of us. He – knows  – whose  – we  – are.

“Great is our Lord and mighty in power; his understanding has no limit.”

He knows the good, the bad, the ugly. He knows our thoughts every minute.

“The Lord sustains the humble but casts the wicked to the ground.”

God’s word reminds us that the ‘fear of the Lord is wisdom’. Trusting Him will make our whole being, sound.

 Sing to the Lord with grateful praise; make music to our God on the harp.”

Our vocal chords have strings. Let us be willing to look to Him and sing.

 He covers the sky with clouds; he supplies the earth with rain
   and makes grass grow on the hills.
 He provides food for the cattle, and for the young ravens when they call.”

The word of God empowers the weak. Reading His words transform feeble knees. God’s word is light and living. Oh that we would heed it each morning and evening:

 His pleasure is not in the strength of the horse,
    nor his delight in the legs of the warrior;
 the Lord delights in those who fear him,
    who put their hope in his unfailing love.”

How good it is to sing praises to our God,
    how pleasant and fitting to praise him!”

Will you join me today to praise Him with out ceasing? He knows when the rhythm and rhyme isn’t flowing, but He is the One Faithful to keep you. He is all knowing.

“Praise the Lord.”

On the good days and the bad.

How good it is to sing praises to our God,
    how pleasant and fitting to praise him!”

Amen, amen, amen,  Amen!




Nevertheless God

We desire friendship with Happiness. We yearn for acquaintance with Joy. But often we find hidden around the corner, Distress and Restlessness.

Where is Rest?

Airwaves reveal that women “roar” and men “parade themselves.” Children very young and very old, and all the ages in between seek Refuge.

He reaches His hand out in the storm. He speaks, as “our bodies had no rest, . . . we were troubled on every side. Outside were conflicts, inside were fears.

Nevertheless God, who comforts the downcast, comforted us . . .” (2 Corinthians 7:5,6. NKJV).  

Refuge comes in the storm. His Word brings His companion, Calm. And Calm has a twin, who’s name is Song.

“O soul are you weary and troubled. No light in the darkness you see. There’s a light for a look at the Savior and life more abundant and free.”

Then Remember came to my rescue and offered some strong exhortation:

“Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.” Mark 14:38, NIV.

“O God,” I cry, “Remind me.” The mountains quake, the trials mount. When lying on my bed, my head cries, “There’s no way out!”

And a still, quiet voice speaks mysteriously deep:

“God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea, though its waters roar and foam and the mountains quake with their surging.”      Psalm 46, from the Holy Book.

God speaks in the hymn of old, when weariness overtakes our soul, “Turn your eyes upon Jesus, look full in His wonderful face. And the things of earth will grow strangely dim, in the light of His glory and grace.”

So I run to the Word, His present help, and I turn to Psalm 46 to calm me back to sleep:

 “There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God,
    the holy place where the Most High dwells.
 God is within her, she will not fall;
    God will help her at break of day.
Nations are in uproar, kingdoms fall;
    he lifts his voice, the earth melts.

 The Lord Almighty is with us;
    the God of Jacob is our fortress.”

So, let us “turn our eyes upon Jesus and look full in His wonderful face,” that we might seek refuge from the Lord and not men. That we might have Peace dwell deep inside, giving counsel and comfort to put anxiety aside,

that we might have an abundance of hope and joy and all the rest, because we have made God, The Almighty, Lord of All the Universe, our confidence.

Today, today – let us yearn to seek His face.



“ God, I have a prayer…”

 “God, I have a prayer,  for the little ones and the old. May  children wake up surrounded, not by evil thoughts that are cold, but let the Spirit breathe on them, even words from long ago, hear our prayer:  “Raise the fallen, cheer the faint, heal the sick, and lead the blind…” (1)

God, I have a prayer, that vision would be giv’n to things that are unseen, that our minds would think above, that our souls would be set free. That the prayer of our heart and exclamation of our tongues would be:  “More than all, in Thee I find!” Let Your Spirit refresh and our tongue repeat: “More than all, in Thee I find!”

You, Lord Jesus are what we need. To seek Thee first, is the key.

Oh God, may the world see the colors in Your hue. May our eyes be opened to the sunrise of Your face. May the children of the entire human race, see that Your color, Dear Lord, is Grace!

“God, my prayer is written in this old Wesley hymn,“Just and holy is Thy name; I am all unrighteousness… that these words would be ours, our proclamation to you:  “Just and holy is Thy name; I am all unrighteousness…

As easy as ABC, yet harder than any Chemistry – there is no need for ‘outside clean-up’ jobs, the main event’s gotta happen inside, where the heart of the child sees their own mess, and finally cries: “Just and holy is His name . I am all unrighteousness.”

False and full of sin I am; Thou art full of truth and grace.” That children young and old would know, the words to the hymn, “Jesus, Lover of My Soul!”

“ALL the children of the world must admit, each in his own unique time and space:  “I am all unrighteousness!”Oh God, may the world see the color in Your hue, may their eyes be opened to the color of Your face – and that in Your image You created the entire human race, Your face, our Prince of Peace is full of Grace.

For “Blessed are the poor in spirit.” Your very own words, dear Lord God. Matthew chapter 5  – is full of the attitudes You, Yourself had spoken – to be remedy to the sadness, pain and cries. Be still, children. And, on God’s green sod, lie.

“The Kingdom of heaven is yours today, be poor in spirit and blessed you’ll be.” These are the words, the remedy. But not one man likes to hear words of this sound. Oh no,”poor in spirit?” that means “I have need.”

“God, I have a prayer that the children can say: “Other refuge have I none; hangs my helpless soul on Thee. Leave, ah, leave me not alone; Still support and comfort me!”

Dear Lord, that the children would sing, “All my trust on Thee is stayed; All my help from Thee I bring. Cover my defenseless head, With the shadow of Thy wing.”

Yes, God, I have a prayer that the children of the world that You laid Your life down for, would change their tune and sing an old song: “Jesus, lover of my soul, Let me to Thy bosom fly, While the nearer waters roll, While the tempest still is high! Hide me O my Savior hide, Till the storm of life is past. Safe into the haven guide. Oh, receive my soul at last!”

That the children would trust as they rest in Your hand, and sing and sing, “Jesus, lover of my soul, Let me to Thy bosom fly, while the nearer waters roll, While the tempest still is high.” “God I have a prayer, that the children of the world to YOU would direct their cry!”

“Thou, O Christ, art all I want; More than all, in Thee I find.” That revival would spread like a fire in the forest, the children would pray, “Raise the fallen, cheer the faint, Heal the sick and lead the blind. Just and Holy is Thy name, I am all unrighteousness. False and full of sin I am; Thou art full of truth and grace.” Yes, this is my prayer for me and for them!”

“Plenteous grace with Thee is found, Grace to cover all my sin. Let the healing streams abound…” I pray for the children, the children of the world, that they would turn around and speak this new ‘old’ song, “Make and keep me pure within. Thou of life, the Fountain art, Freely let me take of Thee …”Spring Thou up within my heart; Rise to all eternity.”

This is the prayer, this is it, I say, “Spring Thou up within my heart;” May revival around us speak louder than the lies, “Plenteous grace with Thee is found, Grace to cover all my sin… “Thou of life the Fountain art, Freely let me take of Thee. Spring Thou up within my heart; Rise to all eternity!”

“Let it be. Amen, let it be. Amen. For the women, the men and all the children. “Thou, O Christ, art all I want; More than all, in Thee I find … 

“Spring Thou up within my heart; Rise to all eternity!”

(1) a hymn by Wesley: “Jesus, Lover of my Soul”

the Umbrella is held so I can dance in the rain!

I had a friend who was stricken with paralysis from the neck down, not just for a day, or a week or even a month, but 5 and3/4 years. Jenny could not do anything, but what she did do she did with excellence. Jenny taught me so much in that she ‘believed and trusted and waited’ for God. I write this as I remember my friend who was a most incredible witness of courage and patience and grace to me, then – and still today. Jenny forever lives in my heart…and as we had opportunity to study the Song of Solomon together we both discovered her very name, Jenny, means ‘Fair one’…

This world,  with its mountains and clouds and rough seas and torrents, they come to invade  and surround. This world, this world -with sunny skies welcomed, but then, the rains fall with no sign of stopping. Life can press down, oppress down, and makes the feet burdened, when the heart has no song, and it’s tempted to stop hoping.

Hoping in God is what we must always keep doing.  “Increase my faith!” Is the prayer I must cry! God holds the Umbrella, His Spirit  to me, that I may choose to finally step out of the comforts of despair, and take the first steps to dance even if its still raining. There’s no time for moping, one must always keep hoping. He holds out a promise to cover and protect, but sometimes I choose to reject it as I remain sitting in a big mess – with my head down and my eyes on the puddles, He bids me to ‘look up’ and see the hand of His Son, the Prince He has sent, whose eyes are on me (?), OH How can that be?

‘Come to Me,” He calls me even  by name. He waits and longs that I choose to dance in the rain – to cast off the pain, to lay down the shame, to lift up my eyes to the One who paid the price of my ticket, my debt in full.  He took my whole punishment upon His own flesh, so that I might begin (once again), and have…this everlasting dance with Him! He forgives all the past and makes all things new, He pulls me out of the the rough and the thicket, that I may learn what life is a-fresh! He holds out His hand that I may finally stand and put my eyes upon Him and gain the strength that is needed. He provides me new garments, off with the old, torn and dirty! He clothes me, renews me, forgives me and then, He smiles as I take hold of His righteous right hand, with the Umbrella shielding us from the  cold and the rain, we take our first steps to dance in the rain!

The storm may be raging, the clouds remain dark,  but the Umbrella is held that I might rise to my feet. As I look up to Him, the One reaching for my hand, my mind thinking on things higher than this earthly sand.  The Comfort is present, the Help I find, as I stand in my weakness and discover new strength, to nuzzle myself between the ‘Rock of all Ages’  to ‘think on these things’ and read of His pages. A song begins to sing in my heart again, as I fancy to dance with the Prince whose been given.

A father  grants permission to the young man delighted, to escort his daughter to the altar,  and my Father in heaven, has provided for me, a Prince, to escort me, and walk with me and lead me today, even amid the rough places and the color-less grey. He called me by name, He didn’t give up.  He asked that I might step out of the darkness and stand, even amidst the hurt, and all of the pain, to take His hand. That I might even ‘feel’ His touch and His healing, yesterday and forever,  His hand is held out, that I might accept it whole-hearted, to join the One who loves me to dance in the rain.

And with each step I’m taking, I’m growing in my own understanding just how my Prince truly loves…me. He loved me first, He gave His life for my sin, how can that be? His thoughts are so high – He is fairer than the sons of men, so much fairer is He. He is a Rock, a fortress, a buckler, ’tis true-but He’s also the Rose of Sharon, the Lily of the Valley, He’s the sunset and sunrise, He’s the sparkle in the spring, He’s lovely, He’s ever-present, and He sings over me!

How my Prince loves me! It is said in His word: “Like a lily among thorns, So is my love among the daughters.” I am His ‘lily’, and He sees the thorns -how they  hurt and tear and cause my heart to bleed, but My love  He knows,  oh yes, He knows all about thorns, when they were pressed so harshly on His brow, He knows a broken heart, He knows, He sees, and He’s there – He waited for me…

“The voice of my beloved! Behold He comes leaping upon the mountains. Skipping upon the hills.” He skips and leaps but even the hills overwhelm me. ‘My beloved spoke, and said to me: “Rise up, my love, my fair one, and come away…” His voice melts my fear. But He loved me even when I slept on my bed and didn’t make the choice to turn my head:

” My Beloved came to His garden, and He knocked on the door in the night, saying, “Open for me, my sister, my love, my dove, my perfect one; for my head is covered with dew…”but I was tired and just wanted sleep, so from my bed I didn’t move…  But when I came to my senses and opened the door, He was nowhere to be seen. He was far out of sight!

So I went searching and asking all around, “Have you seen the one I love?” And it was then, in my search that I found the One…It is written in the Song of all Songs, the words of this pen. In my search I discovered His love never changes. His canopy of love, is there – it surrounds me.  His banner over me… He sings: “Behold, you are fair my love! Behold you are fair! You have dove’s eyes behind your veil…””You are fair my love, and there is no spot in you… You have ravished my heart, my sister, my spouse; you have ravished my heart… “A garden enclosed is my sister, my spouse, a spring shut up, a fountain sealed.” Oh, how I’ve discovered when I lift up my eyes, I see no more puddles, just grace and love.

I’m protected and given life everlasting, and so, I bow my head in the midst of the dance, giving thanks to My Father who is in heaven. I’m thankful my Prince never gave up on me. I’m thankful the Umbrella is held out daily. That I might see clearly my Prince who loves me. He reaches out His hand, that I might look up in His eyes, and respond to His love and surrender to Him: “Let my beloved come to his garden and eat of its  fruits.” I am nothing alone, I know that now, so I empty myself that I might be filled to the full. Filled with His love this time around, filled with His fruit that love may abound!

May I receive and respond and dance with great joy, even if the skies are dark and with storm, and may my words tell of the One I love: “Yes, He is altogether lovely. This is my beloved, and this is my friend, O daughters, O daughters of Jerusalem!” This is my story, this is my song:“I am my beloved’s. And my beloved is mine.” “Set me as a seal upon Your heart.” These may be words from the Song of all Songs, yet today they’re all mine – He’s given me a new start. A new start each day, His mercies are new every morning: “He has brought me to His banqueting house, And His banner over me is love”. I love my Jesus, maybe now you see why. I tell you the story, of the Umbrella in the rain, because I want you to know of the Prince who is waiting. He is waiting for you to take His hand as I do, yesterday, and today and for all life never-ending, He has brought me to His banqueting house, and His love is never fails. Today, I share my Prince with you. He loves you the same, yes He does! It is true!

(Song of Solomon 2:1,2. Song of Solomon 2:4.Song of Solomon 2:10.)