The summer has also been full of camps for the kids, a couple of trips to the lake and this weekend we were involved in the Conference that Jason and I grew up in.
It has been good to reconnect with old friends and meet new ones.
I led the worship for the women's session. It was the first I have led worship for over two years.
It is where I find the greatest fulfillment in church. Leading people into the presence of Jesus. There is nothing more exciting to me. I have found something has happened in the two years since God started us on this new journey.I think the work that God has done in me started when 2 years ago I sang at this same conference after facing some very difficult days previous. The night before I was to sing I was lying awake crying before the Lord... I said " God I can Not do this". And very clearly I heard my father respond to my weak willed comment with this..."this is not about you, I am choosing to use you to speak to these ladies".
I woke the next morning with a calm. A sense of it's his to choose who he uses and what he does with them.
I will be a vessel.
And since then so much has changed in my heart.
I have found when reputation is stripped from us we are much more pliable in the hands of the potter.
I care less about what "they" think and more about what "HE" thinks.
And so getting up to lead after all these years felt good to be able to giveback out of what he has taught me. To be a vessel that he could use how and when he wants to.
He is greater than our problems. And even when it Hurts He steadies my heart.
One of the most powerful things happened to me yesterday that just made me pause and praise.
God gave me a song last spring. Just plopped it in my lap one day.
I decided then to use it for this session.
I didn't know what all was planned for this day but yesterday as I saw how it all unfolded I shed some tears as I realized again how God gave me a song not just for me but for all that took place in that room. There were 28 different ladies who set up booths of phrases taken from the 23rd Psalm. "The Lord is my Shepherd"... "He makes me lie down in green pastures"... "He restores my soul"... He leads me in paths of righteousness"... "Yea tho I walk through the valley of the shadow of death"...
Everyone had stories of how God had led them and redeemed their broken stories.
The amazing Father that we have orchestrated this event and gave me this song 6 months ago.
My Story...My Song
When my heart feels the burden of the weight of this world
and I carry the weight on my shoulders.
When my fears overwhelm me and I can't see tomorrow.
I will fall in the arms of the Savior.
He is my rescue. He is my strength.
He is my light. He leads the way.
He picks me up when I fall down.
He turned my story into a song.
When your hope is lost. Your faith is tested.
And the plans that you made fall to pieces.
When the one that you trusted has left you empty handed.
Won't you fall in the arms of the Savior?
He'll be your rescue. He'll be your strength.
He is the light.He'll lead your way.
He picks you up when you fall down.
He'll turn your story into a song.
If you are struggling today with a story that looks hopeless. And a pit that looks too deep to crawl out of remember He takes stories of brokenness and turns them into songs for his glory. You are not going through the struggle alone. He wants to take the story of your life and turn it into something beautiful. Hang on to him. Get to know the shepherd.
My encouragement comes in the form of scriptures. Pour into his word and let him pour his healing words into your wounded soul.
One of my favorite books he has spoken to me out of is Isaiah.
I used to read some of those chapters day and night until I would fall asleep with the book open on my chest hoping when I awoke I would be healed. Each morning I would wake and think I made it one more day. Each day got a little easier. And after about 1 year I thought I can't believe I made it here. And then some days I would get through the day and realize I had never thought of the pain one time.
I know that God never wastes pain of that magnitude.
Through the pain he has developed in me a strength I never knew before.
I haven't become a perfect person through the healing... that won't happen until heaven.
But I have become whole.
I still can see the wound. And when someone bumps it I still wince but it's not open and gaping and oozing like it once was.
He healed me through his word and I know he will do the same for you my friend.
I can truly say today... He has made me Glad.