Tuesday, October 30, 2012

All in one day.

 We had a day of two events that have nothing in common besides that they were all in one day. 
We were on the road by dark-thirty in the morning, and arrived at our friend's farm by 7:30.

A beautiful, foggy morning! The pastures with their horses (or cows) looked so picturesque.

The Chickens. Or "The Meat"

Bringing in the chickens
Sophia was a little bit shy at first, but by the end she was in there catching the chickens

Cameron after a -ahem!- water hose war...

How many clowns fit in the car ?

"The last melon!"... or chicken. We had started cleaning when the last chicken was discovered, it also was one of the heaviest.

Literally, when we got home, we showered, talked, then went to our next event:
Bruce Munsterman and  Peter Steigerwald.

A dear friend of ours gave us tickets to join him at KHCB's 50th anniversary celebration at 1st Baptist.Though I'm not a dedicated radio listener (for any station) it was neat to see all the talkshow host in person and see all the volunteers too.

Kristyn Getty reading some scripture.
Part of the celebration was a little concert from Keith and Kristyn Getty. They sang "By Faith", "In Christ Alone", "The Power of the Cross", a beautiful lullaby to their daughter, and a unique rendition of  "God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen".

Space shuttle astronaut, Colonel Jeff  William, gave a testimony of his time in space looking at the world...

John MacArthur was the speaker for the evening.

He spoke on Isaiah 53

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Not what My Hands Have Done

The Grand Canyon

Another favorite -actually, I think all of these songs have been my favorite- that gives such a poignant reminder of "not what my hands have done". A dear friend of ours from church pointed out how by just reading the beginning of each verse there is such a beautiful picture of redemption.
 Let's see, "Not what my hands have done can save my guilty soul;" no works righteousness, self-help, can save us. Not just plain save us, but save, " guilty soul" us. Guilty before who? God. "Against you, you only, have I sinned and done what is evil in your sight," {Psalm 51:4}. 

" And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light." Isn't funny to think of all the things the Bible records God said and it happened? That may seem like such a vast and childish thought at first, but go read and ponder. This same Lord that has spoken so much, is the same Lord that, "can speak to me of grace;". In this second verse is the solution to the first verse, "Your voice alone, O Lord, can speak to me of grace;"

  For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ." {2 Corinthians 4:5-6}

This third verse pretty much fly's in the face of all other thinking (christian or not), "Thy work alone, O Christ, can ease this weight of sin;It is Christ, and only Him, that can clean our slate, erase sin, and clear the guilty soul. His sinless life in a sinful and fallen world was, and is, significant. Therefore His death was just as significant because He took on God's full wrath, though there was no sin in Him, yet, "We know that Christ, being raised from the dead, will never die again; death no longer has dominion over him. For the death he died he died to sin, once for all, but the life he lives he lives to God." {Romans 6:9-10} It is Christ's who saves us. Where have we gotten the idea that there is a corner of us that is untainted by sin to choose God? There is nothing here about what we do besides sinning (but later praising and loving).

"I bless the Christ of God; I rest on love divine; ", the  sinner is now resting in the loving and gracious arms of the Savior that he has been speaking of. Not only does he rest in, but also blesses the, "Christ of God". This Christ of God, connects to same God that the sinner can't make peace with in verse 1. Also there is such firm trust and reassurance in this verse.

This last verse, "I praise the God of grace; I trust His truth and might;" is a continued growth from the previous verse. Reminds me of the first question in one of our church's catechism, "What is the chief end of man? The chief end of man is to glorify God and enjoy Him forever." He truly is The All in All, the great I AM, and Lord! And He, "calls me His, I call Him mine, My God, my joy and light." This last verse kinda sums up the hymn, reminding, that is God who saves, pardons, and loves. It is only through Christ that we love and forgive. 
In this the love of God was made manifest among us, that God sent his only Son into the world, so that we might live through him.  In this is love, not that we have loved God but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins." 
{1 John 4:9-10}

Not What My Hands Have Done

Not what my hands have done can save my guilty soul;
Not what my toiling flesh has borne can make my spirit whole.
Not what I feel or do can give me peace with God;
Not all my prayers and sighs and tears can bear my awful load.

Your voice alone, O Lord, can speak to me of grace;
Your power alone, O Son of God, can all my sin erase.
No other work but Yours, no other blood will do;
No strength but that which is divine can bear me safely through.

Thy work alone, O Christ, can ease this weight of sin;
Thy blood alone, O Lamb of God, can give me peace within.
Thy love to me, O God, not mine, O Lord, to Thee,
Can rid me of this dark unrest, And set my spirit free.

I bless the Christ of God; I rest on love divine;
And with unfaltering lip and heart I call this Savior mine.
His cross dispels each doubt; I bury in His tomb
Each thought of unbelief and fear, each lingering shade of gloom.

I praise the God of grace; I trust His truth and might;
He calls me His, I call Him mine, My God, my joy and light.
’Tis He Who saveth me, and freely pardon gives;
I love because He loveth me, I live because He lives.

-Horatius Bonar

Monday, October 8, 2012

stay calm and go camping

In the case that you haven't kept up with my wedding planning venture, I've been a wee busy lately.
The past few months have been quite the roller coaster, having a full mental plate while having a hand in planning three different weddings has made for one pretty tired, petite person; with everything going on right now, I can sense that a good, salty cry is in order (along with a hot bath and a glass of wine!), if only I could spare the time... I feel as if my to-do list is continually growing and I'm continually scurrying around trying to get things done; no sooner is one item completed than another unfinished item appears. It goes without saying that I'm tired. and discouraged. Quite a few things are weighing heavy on my mind and I have a long to-do list to boot. As much as I love and appreciate things to be in ship shape and Bristol fashion, I just don't have the energy or strength to do them. Tired and discouraged, I tell you.

The above has pretty much been my current petition before the Lord recently; I suppose that starting off the morning with this mindset can be dangerous. While I have been bringing these things and more before my Faithful Father, I am keenly aware of my finite state; there are so many things that I don't know, but after all, it's His will that shall come to pass and all for His glory. Our God is so kind to bring such comfort and peace with His sovereignty; it is cliche but maintaining the focus on Him and His will truly does do the soul good. While I may be swirling in a sea of confusion and discouragements, I can lean on His everlasting arms, knowing that His purposes will come to pass and for His glory; that whatever events or things that come to pass in my life, I can rest in the fact that the Lord has been preparing me for just that situation, I truly have all that I need in Him (here's a great reminder of this). There's also a merciful peace in looking back at God's past mercies, how He's provided for my every need, how He has brought His will to pass. What can I truly dread or fear (or be stressed out about or lose sleep over or...) when trusting in His sovereignty and goodness?

So, my family and I will be heading out tomorrow to go camping. Not as a result of my looming to-do list, it just so happens that while I'm struggling to get things done, we're going on a family camping trip! Nothing could be more timely, truly. While it's not relaxing to pack and prepare for the trip (more lists!!), I can imagine the rest that will be there once we set up camp, very timely indeed. Yes, ladies and gents, I'll be taking a knitting project (honestly, how can one not knit in chilly weather??) and my journal (I have a certain ideal about writing while on a camping trip, it just seems fitting somehow). After more scurrying around tomorrow, packing up the car, and finalizing a few things at home, we'll be off for the Central Texas hillcountry until Sunday. Quite fitting indeed.

He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High
will abide in the shadow of the Almighty.
I will say to the LORD, “My refuge and my fortress,
my God, in whom I trust.”
               (Psalm 91:1-2 ESV)

(it's an old one but here is my favorite rendition of this wonderful hymn, enjoy :)

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

good morning

To say each morning,

"I must have things weariful, painful to bear today, and they shall all be offered up beforehand as my heart's sacrifice; they shall be, not fought against, but received calmly and as welcome, for His sake who suffers them to come,"

gives a dignity, a purpose, nay a very joy to what otherwise is all cheerless annoyance.
~H.L. Sidney Lear


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