Consecration, Destiny, Eternity, Process, Purpose, The Voyage

This is not in vain // An exhortation 

Therefore we do not lose heart. Even though our outward man is perishing, yet the inward man is being renewed day by day. For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory. – 2 Corinthians‬ ‭4:16-17‬ ‭

Don’t give up now, your life has barely just begun. These few short years are but a drop in the bucket of eternity. Our momentary troubles are refining in us real gold – gold of infinite worth that we will only truly see in eternity. 

It’s not in vain, none of this is in vain. Yield, surrender, keep trusting, keep going. Find yourself, again and again at the feet of Jesus. It is the only way to live. It is the only true life there is. 

One day with unveiled eyes we will see all we have built through the foundations of meekness and trust. We will enter into His presence with our heads held high, absolutely victorious in love. We will, with exceeding joy, receive the great reward of our faith – the delight of Jesus Himself. This is the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. This is where all of this is going. 

We must, with diligence, set our eyes on this vision over and over again. Eternity has been written on our hearts for this very reason. To show us where we are going, that we may not lose heart. 

There is a reward waiting for the faithful. 

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Consecration, Destiny, Eternity, Process, Purpose, The Voyage

Unshakeable Hope 

“These all died in faith, not having received the promises, but having seen them afar off were assured of them, embraced them and confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth. 

For those who say such things declare plainly that they seek a homeland. And truly if they had called to mind that country from which they had come out, they would have had opportunity to return. But now they desire a better, that is, a heavenly country.

Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for He has prepared a city for them.” // Hebrews‬ ‭11:13-16‬ ‭

Only when we understand how it will end will we know how we must live in the now. God placed eternity in the hearts of men for this very reason. (Ecc 3:11) This vapor called life has to be anchored in what is transcendent and of eternal continuity if it is to have any meaning – otherwise we are but mere wandering fools to be pitied. 

Everything else is like chaff – it will all burn away to dust before the fire of His eyes. I can’t even begin to tell you how it is my biggest fear to live a life that counts for nothing. To have built my life upon all these things that seemed so great in the eyes of men, only to stand before Him on that day and have it all fall out from under me. 

I swear, with everything I have within me, that I will live and posture my life in such a way that when I finally enter into His presence, it will not be with shame – but with my head held high, strong and absolutely victorious in love. 

Seasons come and seasons go, and I have many dreams to fight for, but this – this will always be the biggest dream of my heart. 

I will receive the reward of my faith.

“… to Him who is able to keep you from stumbling, and to present you faultless before the presence of His glory with exceeding joy, to God our Savior, who alone is wise, be glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and forever. Amen.” /// Jude‬ ‭1:24-25‬

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Consecration, Intimacy, Worship

With all my heart. 

I’ve always loved the story of Mary and her alabaster jar. Withholding nothing she broke her most precious treasure and poured it all out upon the feet of the One she loved. 

Do you know how you have come face to face with the presence of God? It is when the only response that remains is the burning desire to pour all of yourself out before Him. To give and give and give of every last drop of your soul until there is absolutely nothing left. 

More than just emotion, more than just fleeting feelings, the Holy Spirit quickens us out of our natural apathy and selfishness as we behold the face of One so worthy that we cannot help but to desperately fall at His feet and freely give our all. 

“I want to be Yours. Please, only let me be Yours.” This is the heart wrenching cry that rings through the chambers of my dry and dusty soul when His presence sweeps over my heart like a fiery wind. 

To be fully given to the One who has given it all to be near to us. To yield and surrender into perfect oneness. To love, not just in parts but in complete and utter entirety. This – this is the sweetest fragrance of worship. 

“… And you shall love the Lord Jehovah your God with your whole heart and with your entire soul and with your entire mind and with all your power.” Mark 12:30 

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Consecration, Destiny, The Voyage

The Road Not Taken

Someone once told me that nothing ever happens like you plan for it to. I should’ve listened. It would have saved me so much heartache. I had so many notions and dreams of my own – all these plans for what and when, and how and who. And o the strife and confusion that happened in this little heart of mine. There were moments when I fought when I should’ve rested, and moments I drew back when I should’ve fought. In hindsight, I really didn’t know any better though. I had always just done what I thought was best at the time.

But that is what happens when you strive after selfish little dreams that aren’t His.

Unrest.

Because He holds me to my vows of being completely His and not my own, everytime I start to build castles that aren’t His, He steps in to fight me. Mostly gently, but sometimes with much fierceness (how great and terrifying those moments, I can never forget).

But this is the path I have chosen – His will and His story, above mine, now and forever. I am not saying that there are not woeful nights when sighings overtake my heart and I wistfully yearn for the things that could have been had I chosen another path. There are. So many of them. Even so, I no longer wish to strive for petty dreams, even the big ones, because every dream that isn’t His is ultimately rendered petty, no matter how good and fulfilling they seem to appear at first to the undiscerning human spirit.

And such is the life I will live. The one of always choosing His will, His dream, and His story above my own. No matter how painful. No matter what it costs me. And it has cost me a lot, yes even now, even in my tender youth.

“Occasionally, weep deeply over the life you hoped would be. Grieve the losses. Then wash your face. Trust God. And embrace the life you have.” // Piper 

Surprisingly enough though, there is a fulfillment that comes with giving yourself over to a cause higher than yourself. It is deeper than anything I’ve ever known. When you die to yourself so that you can say yes to God, the strangest peace will overcome you.

And perhaps there is a place where His dreams and my own can meet. Perhaps there will still be an unraveling of a life so much more beautiful than what I could have ever planned for on my own.

Is He not a good Father after all? He is. I know His heart.

So I say yes to all His ways.

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Two roads diverged in a yellow wood, 

And sorry I could not travel both 

And be one traveler, long I stood 

And looked down one as far as I could 

To where it bent in the undergrowth;          

Then took the other, as just as fair, 

And having perhaps the better claim, 

Because it was grassy and wanted wear; 

Though as for that the passing there 

Had worn them really about the same,         

And both that morning equally lay 

In leaves no step had trodden black. 

Oh, I kept the first for another day! 

Yet knowing how way leads on to way, 

I doubted if I should ever come back.         

I shall be telling this with a sigh 

Somewhere ages and ages hence: 

Two roads diverged in a wood, and I— 

I took the one less traveled by, 

And that has made all the difference. 

– Robert Frost // The Road Not Taken.         

 

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Consecration, Process

You’re the best believer in me. 

“And he brought him to Jesus. Now when Jesus looked at him, He said, “You are Simon the son of Jonah. You shall be called Cephas” (which is translated, A Stone).”‭‭John‬ ‭1:42‬ ‭‬‬

You see who we are even before we’ve become. You know beginning to end, and everything else in between. You are in my everyday; gently shaping, faithfully molding, intently burning. You are well able to see me through from the here and now, all the way until then. You are in my mess. My trials, my triumphs, You are in it all. With me. For me. 

Faithful One, I know You will finish what You’ve started inside me. Make me into all the beauty that You’ve ever dreamed of for me to be. 

“Him who is able to keep you from stumbling, and to present you faultless before the presence of His glory with exceeding joy..” ‭‭Jude‬ ‭1:24‬ ‭‬‬

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Bridal Paradigm, Consecration, Desire, Fear of God, Love

My Jealous Lover 

4 years ago, in the thick of depression, I believed God didn’t love me. I believed that He loved mankind as a whole but me? Not me. Not if He would allow me such pain. I remember crying to an aunty from church and asking her if she believed God loved her. She said yes; with all her heart she did. And I was dumbfounded, I couldn’t understand. 

But today I can say too with all my heart that I believe God loves me. He loves me fiercely, relentlessly, like a wave that crashes over and over again. He doesn’t stop, He fights to the end, burning all that stands in the way. His eyes ablaze with fire – a jealous Lover whose heart is set only on one thing – me. 

How pale these afflictions seem in the light of this glorious wonder. I can withstand anything. 

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Consecration, Fear of God, israel, The Church

What Love Is This? 

// From an interview with a man from the underground Church in the Middle East: “There are people that are my brothers and sisters that I talk to all the time, and they’re very close to me, in some ways they feel closer than my natural sister and brother and family and immediate family. And I have to think about this – What if we’re all together one day and radical Muslims break our door down and they start raping for example all the girls in there? 

I went and asked one of them, “What are you going to do if a guy, not just one guy, what if they come and gang rape you? What are you doing to think at that moment?” And this ex-radical Muslim said this to me, that is now a follower, a passionate fiery follower of Christ, “I have given up my rights. I have given up my position. I have given up everything for Jesus. I have given up my desires. I have given up even my future. And at that moment, when they come and rape me, I will close my eyes and say, “Now I offer my body as a living sacrifice for You as it just says in Romans 12:2.”

And when that girl said that to me that blew my mind, how someone can just go in the secret place of their heart and find Jesus in that moment when they’re getting raped and say, “Lord, on my knees, I offer you my body as a living sacrifice.” 

And that’s what God is doing to radical female Muslims. He is transforming them into radical, insane, crazy Christians, that.. I mean, you can’t even put in words what that girl said and how powerfully deep what she said, and how strong, and what grace must be on her life that she could say that so strongly and so confidently to say at that moment, “I will picture Jesus and say now I give You my body.””

// After all this time, I weep for how little I know of love.  

// Photo taken at the Muslim Quarter of Old City Jerusalem.

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