Songs In The Night

Another night.

Tossing back and forth.

Thinking.

Praying.

Remembering.

The words of treasured hymns from long ago come to mind.

‘When you walk with the Lord.’

‘It is well’.

Even ‘Jesus Loves me’

Then suddenly

‘Who lovingly guardeth my footsteps

and giveth me songs in the night.’

Words of long ago. So long ago I tossed some more trying to remember

what hymn they were from.

Praying. Praying for this one. For that one. Praying some more.

Songs in the night.

An amazing thought.

Those treasured songs of long time past comfort and encourage me today.

He still gives songs in the night.

For you. For me. For all those who are weary and broken.

Redeemed.

He redeems all our heartaches and brings beauty from ashes.

Songs in the night.

Listen in the stillness

whispers of love.

singles book

Let’s Talk It Over

“Lord, please use me today. I give it to you.

And may Your Name be glorified.”

I meant that prayer with every fiber of my being.

Yes, I did.

Well, I thought I did.

God blesses victories and successes. Right?

But what if there was a mistake, or an accident

or a miscarriage or failed adoption

or a divorce

or a rejected manuscript

or a failed business? And on and on and on.

What then?

Every time before I’d sit to play a piano solo or an offertory

I would ask the Lord to bless it and use it for His Glory.

It was His. And I played well.

But there was that day that changed my thinking.

I had practiced for hours and knew every note.

Backwards and forwards

with my eyes closed.

Then that moment came when I stepped to the piano.

The congregation waited.

I was nervous – I was usually nervous.

“Lord, help me” I cried within. Make it good, I thought.

And so I played

and everything was going so well

until I hit the last cord.

Discord sounded as I realized I had hit one wrong note.

Just one but the sound echoed in my ears long after I hit it.

I stumbled to my seat

Shakened by my foolish mistake

Ugh.

Embarrassment and disappointment covered me.

“Lord, I prayed” I cried out.

Then from somewhere deep within I sensed

“Did you give it to Me?”

“Why yes, Lord. You know I did.”

“Then the outcome is Mine too.”

Like sunshine breaking through the storm

I began to see.

The outcome was His to do with as He chose.

Something that I had missed for years.

Yes, I had given it. But I assumed He would give me

a flawless performance for His Glory.

But here it was still His and He allowed me

to experience less than perfect.

A mess, in my mind, because one wrong note spoiled it all.

Right?

As I thought and pondered I began to see

that when I give it all to Him

I need to take my hands off.

I need to accept His Will, His Way

whatever that may be.

Once more my heart was humbled as I began to see

how I tended to take ownership for the outcomes

if they were undesirable and I’d beat myself up for daysmarch 11 bench

rather than trusting Him with it all.

Freedom broke forth

and liberation to give and serve

without holding onto the end result.

So who is holding the outcome for you?

Let Him have it all. Embrace the peace He gives.

Trust Him to use it all for His Glory and your good.

He longs to do just that for both of us.

Join me, won’t you.

Seeing With Your Heart

Many years ago I worked in a Head Start program for the summer.

Precious memories of those energetic four year olds flood my mind.

All different colored eyes and shapes.

A variety of backgrounds

Two wearing glasses and some struggling with very simple skills

but all so eager to learn. For school.

I was preparing to be a teacher and loved this chance to work with these kids –

many whom had much less of this world’s advantages than I.

I left early to go to work each day. As if I couldn’t get enough of my time there.

Giggles and laughter.

Learning and growing.

I remember sitting at

the large wooden rectangular table

at snack time. Littles ones on each side.

Wiggly  bodies. Tiny little hands. Beads of sweat on their noses sometimes.

Dimples. Grins.

They’d chatter back and forth and I absorbed every moment of their delightful company.

For the first time I knew that I was in my niche.

Children.

My eyes saw treasure and potential and value.

But my heart pulled me to look beneath the surface

and so I gazed with wonder.

I did the math and saw that the year I was 16

they were born.

Me, dealing with Latin, Geometry, friends, music and so much more

and their tender lives just beginning.

Me, living with advantages  and them with so little. Heartbreaking little.

Some needing a good bath and their nails clipped.

Others obviously needing so much more. Why was it so?

My heart saw their innocence. Their worth.

My heart saw their possibilities.

My heart saw their disadvantages

and I longed to do more

be more

give more.

Yes, the years have passed but I still see those precious little ones

and am grateful for that brief summer

when I was privileged to work with them.

All around us are folks with many, many needs.

It is all too easy to not even see them.

to be blind to the disadvantages, the needs whether physical, emotional, social or spiritual of another.

But we must resist that tendency – the numbing of our senses.

Lord, open my eyes and help me to see

and open my heart to respond to the needs calling to us all around.

See with your heart and it will change your life.

It continues to change mine.

How about you?

 

 

feb 29 heart