Wednesday, September 23

Truly, Madly, Deeply

God, You are my God; I eagerly seek You.
    I thirst for You;
    my body faints for You
    in a land that is dry, desolate, and without water...
    My lips will glorify You
    because Your faithful love is better than life.
    So I will praise You as long as I live;
    at Your name, I will lift up my hands.
Psalm 63:1-4

Do you feel this way about the Lord? Do you truly long for Him, feel faint without Him near? Do you really feel that His love is better than life? Do you desire Him as much as you'd desire a big drink of cool water after nearly thirsting to death trekking across the desert? Sometimes I do. But not enough. Not nearly enough. I do love Him, and I do follow Him, but He loves me in such a deeply passionate way. I don't want to give Him crumbs of my leftover love and time and energy. I want to fall truly, madly, deeply in passionate love with Christ.  As with anything, I'm just not capable of this on my own, but with Him, I can love Him that way.

Monday, September 21

Cast Away

For as high as the heavens are above the earth,
    so great is His faithful love
    toward those who fear Him.
As far as the east is from the west,
    so far has He removed
    our transgressions from us.
Psalm 103:11-12

Lately I've been dealing yet again with consequences of past sin. Even worse, someone I love dearly has been experiencing consequences of my sin. In the midst of that, it's easy to forget that God has forgiven me. This verse above is a favorite of mine, for just that reason. His love for me is greater than I can begin to fathom, and He has taken my sins and cast them far, far away -- from me and from Himself.

I've said it before, but I'll say it again: With such great love as He has shown me, how can I not love & serve Him with all my heart!?!

Wednesday, September 16

Psalm 100

Shout triumphantly to the LORD,
     all the earth.
Serve the LORD with gladness;
come before Him with joyful songs.
Acknowledge that the LORD is God.
He made us, and we are His —
His people, the sheep of His pasture.
Enter His gates with thanksgiving
     and His courts with praise.
Give thanks to Him and praise His name.
For the LORD is good, and His love is eternal;
His faithfulness endures through all generations. 

Shout, serve, come acknowledge, enter, give, praise. All to Him. And do it triumphantly, with gladness, thanksgiving, praise. He is God, He made us, He is good, He is love, He is eternal, He is faithful.

Thursday, September 10

The Courtyard of God

"Planted in the house of the LORD, they [the righteous] thrive in the courtyard of our God. They will still bear fruit in old age, healthy and green."  Psalm 94:13-14
When we were in Africa recently, we had the pleasure of having lunch with a local family. The home was enclosed by a concrete fence, with a gate at the entrance to the driveway. This created a wonderful courtyard, and the husband had meticulously planted beautiful flowers and trees to create a true oasis in the midst of the dry and mostly barren areas we'd driven through all around the city. This would be a lovely place to be planted, if you were a plant. Everything there was thriving. Gardens like that don't happen by accident in the midst of the Kalahari desert.
Yesterday I read the above verse, and immediately thought of that courtyard in Africa. If I'm planted firmly in the presence of the Lord, I will thrive. This doesn't mean I'm promised riches or an easy life, but it means I will produce fruit. Not just for a season, but for as long as I live on this earth.