Monday, December 31, 2012

He is Faithful...Always Faithful!

December 31, 2012.

It feels like just yesterday that I was looking forward to the new year of 2012...and now it's already over! How this year has flown by!

Photo Credit: Keilah Engstrom of Vanilla Bean Photography
 This was a wonderful year, filled with so many blessings from the Lord: 

Conner's adoption, 

fun times with friends, 

laughter with my family, 

meeting new people, 

starting up a ministry campaign,  

drawing closer to the Lord, 

getting my license, 

making incredible memories, 

and the list could go on and on. 

Praise the Lord for all He has done!

Some of the greatest blessings though are the trials that the Lord has brought me through.Yes, they have been extremely painful, but the Lord has proved Himself faithful in every situation! Praise His matchless name!

About a month or two ago, I heard a song that has become my "theme song" for this year. It is so beautiful and brings me to tears, realizing how gracious my Savior has been! Through the journey of this past year, He has never left me alone! Oh, there is no one like my Beloved!

Looking ahead to a new year, there are always uncertainties and questions. But, as His children, we can rest in the gentle arms of our Shepherd, knowing that His ways are perfect; whatever happens, we are called to praise and trust in Him.

The following quote is my prayer for 2013....

"May not a single moment of my life be spent outside the light, love and joy of God's presence and not a moment without the entire surrender of myself as a vessel for Him to fill full of His Spirit and His love." Andrew Murray

Happy New Year, my friends, and may 2013 find each of us drawing closer and pressing deeper into Christ! 

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Singing through December~ Song #5

"He was created of a mother whom He created. He was carried by hands that He formed. He cried in the manger in wordless infancy, He the Word, without whom all human eloquence is mute."

"It is here, in the thing that happened at the first Christmas, that the most profound unfathomable depths of the Christian revelation lie. God became man; nothing in fiction is so fantastic as this truth of the incarnation."
~J.I. Packer

Merry Christmas, everyone!

Christ has come...hallelujah! May this day find each one of you rejoicing in the immeasurable goodness and grace of our Savior, who humbled Himself for us. 

Here is the last song of the Singing through December series. This is my absolute favorite Christmas song and is such a powerful reminder of the Gift we have been given in Christ!

Have a blessed day, celebrating Christ's birth!

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Singing through December~ Song #4

Can you believe that we only have 5 more days until Christmas? Exciting, isn't it?!

"But when the fullness of the time came, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the Law, so that He might redeem those who were under the Law, so that He might redeem those who were under the Law, that we might receive the adoption as sons."
Galatians 4:4-5

Photo Credit: The Nativity Story
Let me first say, that it was really hard to pick out a song for today. I already know the last song I'll be posting, but I still have so many Christmas "favorites" that it was hard to choose just one for today.

This is a pretty new Christmas song, at least for me. I heard this for the first time a couple months ago and was brought to tears. It's so beautiful and worshipful! Praise the Lord...we have a Savior! 

Enjoy the song! Let me know what you think and if you have anymore favorites! I've been greatly enjoying all of your suggestions! Thank you so much for taking the time to share!

Hmm, my baby
Heaven sent You to me
All the world's been praying
Who will save?

But who am I?
That here tonight
I hold the One
Who'll bring us life

Hallelujah, we've been found
A child is born to save us now
Hallelujah, light has come
A Savior who will set us free
A promise for those who believe

Do You hear the angels
Sing for You, my baby?
Men and kings have
Come to bow to You

But here in my arms
So close to me
The son of God
Now all can see

Hallelujah, we've been found
A child is born to save us now
Hallelujah, light has come
A Savior set us free

So praise to God on high
He has heard our cry

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Singing through December~Song #3

Well, it's that time again. Time for another song...

This one is called "Adore Him" by Kari Jobe. I love how she turned an old Christmas favorite into a beautiful new worship song. Let us adore Him together...

Countless days on a journey that led so far,
Endless nights they traveled to follow the star,
They did not find a palace, just a humble village home 
And searching for a king but finding a child, no crown, no throne.

Still they bowed down,

Come let us Adore Him
O come let us Adore Him
O come let us Adore Him

Expectation turned to mystery
For nothing was like anything they dreamed
Anticipating the royal and those honored by this world
Instead they gazed in the awestruck eyes of a lowly peasant girl.

Holding her child,

Come let us Adore Him
O Come let us Adore Him
O Come let us Adore Him

The brilliant gold, the fragrant myrrh, the costly frankincense

Placed before Him,

Come let us Adore Him
O Come let us Adore Him
O Come let us Adore Him
Christ the Lord.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Singing through December~ Song #2

How is everyone doing this beautiful Monday morning? 

Thank you to everyone who participated in the first Singing through December post. It's been so encouraging to hear all of the songs you've shared. Thank you so much!

So, are you ready for the second Christmas song?

We're all "used" to the story of Christ's birth.We're so familiar with it that it can easily grow old. The following song beautifully describes the unfathomable awe of the incarnation. The great, majestic King of the Universe laid aside His glory and humbled Himself to the lowest save us from our sin. Hallelujah!

Disclaimer: Clips in this video are taken from The Nativity Story. I know that it is biblically incorrect for the wise men to appear at the stable. So, please...just look past that, if you could. I was thinking about choosing a different video, but decided that the clips were a beautiful addition to the song. I hope you think so too.

Here With Us- Joy Williams

It's still a mystery to me,
That the hands of God could be so small,
How tiny fingers reaching in the night,
Were the very hands that measured the sky

Hallelujah, Hallelujah
Heaven's love reaching down to save the world,
Hallelujah, Hallelujah
Son of God, Servant King, Here with us,
You're here with us

Still a mystery to me,
How His infant eyes had seen the dawn of time,
How His ears had heard an angels' symphony,
But still Mary had to rock her Savior to sleep

Hallelujah, Hallelujah
Heaven's love reaching down to save the world,
Hallelujah, Hallelujah
Son of God, Servant King, Here with us,
You're here with us

Jesus the Christ, born in Bethlehem,
A baby born to save, to save the souls of man

Hallelujah, Hallelujah
Heaven's love reaching down to save the world,
Hallelujah, Hallelujah
Son of God, Servant King, Here with us,
You're here with us

What did you think of "Here With Us"? What's another of your favorite Christmas songs?

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Singing through December~ Song #1

"For a child will be born to us, a son will be given to us; and the government will rest on His shoulders; and His name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace."
Isaiah 9:6

Hallelujah! What a precious Savior we have to worship this Christmas! And what a special privilege we have to worship Him in song! Christmas songs are such a blessing, aren't they?! There are so many beautiful songs that glorify our Lord and turn our hearts to Him!

Immanuel: God with us.

As Christians, Christmas is about Christ. We have the privilege of using this special time of year to remember and celebrate God becoming man (a baby) for us. 

And this Christ-child deserves our worship. 

This December, I'm doing a blogpost series called Singing through December. Every 5 days, I'll post a new Christmas song. That means I'll be sharing my 5 favorites with you (not in any specific ranking order).

 I would love for you to join me! Comment under each post and share a link of your 5 favorite Christ-honoring Christmas songs. There are so many wonderful songs, it's hard to choose just 5...which is why I'm so excited for you to share your favorites as well.

My hope and prayer is that this will be a precious time of encouraging one another with songs that lift up and exalt our Savior this Christmas! 

So, here we go. Song #1 for Singing through December is....

Be Born In Me by Francesca Battistelli

This is a fairly new song, but the words are so beautiful. Be Born in Me is written from Mary's standpoint and gives a challenging example of the surrendered heart we must have as Christ's followers. Our Lord calls us to different trials in life, but we must each surrender our will to His and be able to say, "Not my will, but Yours be done!" 

I hope you're encouraged by this song!

So...what's one of your favorite Christmas songs?

Monday, December 3, 2012

A Sermon and A Quote

This past weekend, I listened to a beautiful sermon called "The Five Arts of Intimacy" from Eric Ludy. For those of you who are leery of this sermon because of the title, I'll let the sermon description speak for itself:

"This message is a catalyst of change for both your intimate walk with Christ and an intimate marriage to a spouse. It brings the concepts of intimacy down out of the clouds into the realm of practical and real. For the crucified, risen, and exalted Jesus Christ is truly knowable, and life in His Kingdom is not a theory or a theology, but a very real and practical life-altering experience."

Yes, this sermon is for everyone, single and married people alike. It serves as a powerful reminder of the way we should seek to intimately love our Lord and Bridegroom, as well as our future (or current) spouse. The illustration Mr. Ludy uses is simply beautiful, yet incredibly challenging. I would strongly recommend this sermon to any disciple of Christ. Click on the link below to watch "The Five Arts of Intimacy".

On a side-note, a friend of mine shared this quote a couple weeks ago. It blessed me so much and has since been a great challenge to me. May we continue to look and place our trust in Christ alone, not focusing on our feelings, but on Christ the Solid Rock.

"We should battle through our moods, feelings, and emotions into absolute devotion to the Lord Jesus. We must break out of our own little world of experience into abandoned devotion to Him. Think who the New Testament says Jesus Christ is, and then think of the despicable meagerness of the miserable faith we exhibit by saying, “I haven’t had this experience or that experience”! Think what faith in Jesus Christ claims and provides— He can present us faultless before the throne of God, inexpressibly pure, absolutely righteous, and profoundly justified. Stand in absolute adoring faith “in Christ Jesus, who became for us wisdom from God— and righteousness and sanctification and redemption . . .” (1 Corinthians 1:30). How dare we talk of making a sacrifice for the Son of God! We are saved from hell and total destruction, and then we talk about making sacrifices!

We must continually focus and firmly place our faith in Jesus Christ— not a “prayer meeting” Jesus Christ, or a “book” Jesus Christ, but the New Testament Jesus Christ, who is God Incarnate, and who ought to strike us dead at His feet. Our faith must be in the One from whom our salvation springs. Jesus Christ wants our absolute, unrestrained devotion to Himself. We can never experience Jesus Christ, or selfishly bind Him in the confines of our own hearts. Our faith must be built on strong determined confidence in Him.

It is because of our trusting in experience that we see the steadfast impatience of the Holy Spirit against unbelief. All of our fears are sinful, and we create our own fears by refusing to nourish ourselves in our faith. How can anyone who is identified with Jesus Christ suffer from doubt or fear! Our lives should be an absolute hymn of praise resulting from perfect, irrepressible, triumphant belief."

-Oswald Chambers