Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Where's the Line to See Jesus by Becky Kelley


This song is simply AMAZING! I'll just let it speak for itself...


Where's the Line to See Jesus by Becky Kelley

Christmas time was approaching; the snow was starting to fall,
Shoppers choosing their presents, people filling the mall,
Children waiting for Santa with excitement and glee,
A little boy tugged my sweater, looked up and asked me,

Where's the line to see Jesus?
Is He here at the store?
If Christmas time is His birthday,
Why don't we see Him more?

As I stood in amazement at this message profound,
I looked down to thank him, he was nowhere around.
The little boy at the mall might as well have had wings
As the tears filled my eyes, I thought I heard him say,

Chorus:
Where's the line to see Jesus?
Is He here at the store?
If Christmas time is His birthday,
Why don't we see Him more?
Where's the line to see Jesus?
He was born for me.
Santa Claus brought me presents,
But Christ gave His life for me.

In the blink of an eye, at the sound of His trump,
We'll all stand in line at His throne.
Every knee shall bow down, every tongue will confess,
That Jesus Christ is Lord.

[Chorus]

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Mini Cinnamon Raisin Rolls

We made these Mini Cinnamon Raisin Rolls the other day. They didn't come out as good as I'd hoped, but they're definitely something we're going to try again... making a few changes. Since they have such potential, I wanted to pass the recipe along.

Mini Cinnamon Raisin Rolls
Adapted from Pillsbury.com

© 2011 Jamie V.
Ingredients:

1 can (8 ounce) Pillsbury refrigerated crescent dinner rolls
1/4 cup butter or margarine, softened
4 teaspoons granulated sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/2 cup raisins (can substitute any other dried fruit)
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1 tablespoon juice or milk

Directions:
  1. Heat oven to 375ºF.
  2. Unroll dough; separate dough into 4 rectangles. Firmly press perforations to seal.
  3. In small bowl, mix granulated sugar and cinnamon (we already had cinnamon-sugar made, so we used that... I don't actually know what the "correct" measurements or amounts we used... but, next time, I'm going to add more cinnamon).
  4. Spread butter evenly over each dough rectangle (we melted the butter and used a pastry brush to spread).
  5. Evenly sprinkle cinnamon-sugar mixture over rectangles. Sprinkle each with raisins (we didn't measure the amount of raisins we used, but we like them... so next time, we'll pile them on).
  6. Starting with the short side of each rectangle, roll up; pinch edges to seal. With serrated knife, cut each roll into 4 slices (we followed the original recipe and did 5 slices per rectangle, but I think 4 would be better). Place slices, cut side down, in ungreased 8- or 9-inch square pan.
  7. Bake 15-20 minutes, or until golden brown. Cool 5 minutes.
  8. Meanwhile, in small bowl, mix powdered sugar and milk (I mixed powdered sugar, milk, and some vanilla extract... it was pretty good) until smooth. Drizzle over rolls. Serve warm.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Love Comes Down by Kerrie Roberts

I just thought I'd share a devotional that a friend had passed along to me a while ago... but, I think it's a good reminder for us all. I'm also sharing a song that I really enjoy, too.

Contentment
By Max Lucado

I have learned to be satisfied
with the things I have and with
everything that happens.

    ~ Philippians 4:11

What if God’s only gift to you were his grace to save you? Would you be content? You beg him to save the life of your child. You plead with him to keep your business afloat. You implore him to remove the cancer from your body. What if his answer is, “My grace is enough.” Would you be content?

From heaven’s perspective, grace is enough. If God did nothing more than save us from hell, could anyone complain?

Having been given eternal life, dare we grumble at an aching body? Having been given heavenly riches, dare we moan about what we don’t have?



http://youtu.be/yGk3JHiflWA

Love Comes Down by Kerrie Roberts

Weak and weary sinner
Longing for relief
You've been watching
As disaster steals another piece
Of all that you held so close
What you love the most
But you can never keep
And hope seems like a promise
Just out of reach
You'd die to feel alive again
You long to be set free

Chorus:
Then love comes down
When your heart is lost
When you've seen your whole world shattered
And your dreams just fall apart
So lift up your voice
Let Him hear your cry
When you've got nothing left to hold onto
That's when love comes down
Love comes down

If you could only know who loves you
Who feels your every pain
If you could only hear Him speaking
With the voice as sweet as rain
You'd know that He counts your tears
He holds them near
Not one will go to waste
And the sorrow that weighs you down
Will float away

[Chorus]

That's when love is stronger
Than any heartbreak
And you know every broken piece
Will be made whole

[Chorus]

When you've got nothing left to hold onto 
That's when love comes down

Monday, December 5, 2011

Glazed Carrots

These are great glazed carrots. I should note that the measurements listed below are just guidelines. Honestly, I eyeball the salt, brown sugar, honey/agave nectar, and lemon juice.

Glazed Carrots

© 2011 Jamie V.
Ingredients:

1 ½ - 2 pounds baby carrots
1 ½ teaspoon salt
3-4 tablespoons butter
2-4 tablespoons honey (or agave nectar)
4 tablespoons packed brown sugar
1 tablespoon lemon juice
pepper and/or parsley (optional)

Directions:

  1. Rinse carrots in cold water and put in medium saucepan. Cover with water, add salt. Bring to boil.
  2. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, continue cooking approximately 15 minutes (until tender). Drain and set aside.
  3. In saute pan, melt butter over medium-low heat. Add honey and brown sugar. Cook, stirring, until sugar is dissolved.
  4. Add lemon juice and gently stir in carrots, coating well. Continue heating, gently stirring, until carrots are hot and glazed.
  5. Top with pepper and/or parsley (optional).

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Pot Pie

We love this pot pie recipe! We've made it many times with chicken, but we used leftover Thanksgiving turkey the other day to make it... and, it turned out delicious.

Chicken (or Turkey) Pot Pie 
Adapted from Betty Crocker

© 2011 Jamie V.
Ingredients:
1 box (10 oz) frozen peas and carrots 
1/3 cup butter or margarine 
1/3 cup all-purpose flour 
1/3 cup chopped onion (or 1-2 tsp onion powder)
1/4 teaspoon pepper 
1-3/4 cups chicken broth 
2/3 cup milk 
½ to 3 cups cut-up cooked chicken or turkey
Pastry for one- or two-crust pie (either homemade or ready-to-use)

* We use a 2.5 quart round casserole dish to bake the pot pie in.

Directions:
  1. Rinse frozen peas and carrots in cold water to separate; drain. 
  2. In 2-quart saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Stir in flour, onion, salt, and pepper. Cook, stirring constantly, until mixture is bubbly; remove from heat. Stir in broth and milk. Heat to boiling, stirring constantly. Boil and stir 1 minute. Stir in chicken and peas and carrots; remove from heat. 
  3. Heat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. 
  4. For ready-to-use pie crusts: 
    • One-Crust Pot Pie - pour mixture into ungreased casserole dish, then place pie crust on top.
    • Two-Crust Pot Pie - place one crust in bottom of ungreased casserole dish, pour mixture on top, then place pie crust on top (pinch and fold edges over). 
  5. Bake uncovered about 35 minutes or until golden brown.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Sloppy Joe

I've had this recipe for a while, and we absolutely love it!

Sloppy Joes

Image by TidyMom {Cheryl}
Ingredients:
1 ¼ pound lean ground beef (you can use ground turkey... we've just found that we prefer ground beef for this recipe)
1 (14.5 ounce) can diced tomatoes
1 ¼ cup ketchup
1/2 cup BBQ sauce
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce

Directions:
  1. Brown beef in skillet. Drain and return beef to skillet. (we just continue to cook it / cook off the fat)
  2. Mix together tomatoes, ketchup, BBQ sauce, Worcestershire sauce in a bowl.
  3. Pour mixture into skillet and stir together with meat.
  4. Simmer and stir often for approximately 15 minutes, or until it thickens.
  5. Serve on hamburger buns. (we serve them open-faced and eat them with a fork... Jeremy like to add cheese and a pickle)

Monday, October 31, 2011

Pork Chops and Apples

We tried these recipes the other day. The pork chops ended up delicious (and they made the apartment smell amazing, while they were baking)! The roasted garlic cauliflower was a bit of a disappointment. Jeremy doesn't like cauliflower, so it was just for me. The original recipe called for, what I believe to be, too much garlic. The cauliflower wasn't bad, but it just wasn't as good as I hoped it would be. I'm going to try it again, tweaking the recipe (even more than I already did below), to give it another chance. I might try to incorporate bread crumbs, or even try it with broccoli... we'll see. Also, I'll try to remember to take pictures of the things I make more often...

Pork Chops and Apples
Adapted from SparkRecipes.com

Ingredients:
4 boneless pork chops
4 apples thinly sliced (and peeled, if desired)
1/2 cup sugar
2 Tbspn flour
1/4 - 1/2 tsp garlic pepper
3/4 tsp cinnamon
1/8 tsp nutmeg

Directions:
  1. Mix together the sugar and cinnamon. Set aside.
  2. Slice apples (peel, if desired).
  3. Sprinkle sugar mixture over the sliced apples and pour into a baking dish.
  4. Mix together the flour and garlic pepper.
  5. Dust the pork chops with the flour mixture and place on top of the apples.
  6. Bake at 425ºF for about 50 minutes. The pork chops come out golden brown and moist.
Adapted from AllRecipes.com

(original recipe yields 6 servings - this one is adapted for 3 servings)

Ingredients:
1-2 teaspoon minced garlic
1 tablespoon and 1-1/2 teaspoons olive oil
1/2 large head cauliflower, separated into florets
2-3 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
salt and pepper to taste
1 teaspoon chopped fresh parsley

Directions:
  1. Preheat the oven to 400ºF. Grease a large casserole dish.
  2. Place the olive oil and garlic in a large resealable bag. Add cauliflower, and shake to mix. Pour into the prepared casserole dish (salt and pepper to taste).
  3. Bake (covered) for 20 minutes, stirring halfway through. Top with Parmesan cheese and parsley, and broil for 3 to 5 minutes, until golden brown.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Alfredo Florentine Lasagna

Bertolli Recipe
I came across a recipe for Alfredo Florentine Lasagna. I don't really like lasagna (partially because I don't like ricotta cheese), but the picture just looked so delicious. So, we replaced the ricotta cheese in the recipe with a combination of mascarpone cheese and shredded mozzarella. My mom, sister, husband, and I all really enjoyed it, and will try it again.

Alfredo Florentine Lasagna
Adapted from Bertolli

Ingredients:
15 ounces cheese (combination of mascarpone and shredded mozzarella), stirred together
1 egg
1 package (10-12 ounces) frozen chopped spinach, thawed and squeezed dry
1 jar Bertolli Alfredo Sauce
12 lasagna noodles, cooked and drained
mozzarella cheese (shredded or thinly sliced fresh) - the recipe calls for 1 pound fresh mozzarella, but we used much less shredded mozzarella... use as much as you want

Directions:
  1. Cook 12 lasagna noodles in large pot, drain, lay flat on baking sheet to keep the noodles straight.
  2. Preheat oven to 350ºF.
  3. Combine the mascarpone and shredded mozzarella cheese combination, egg, and spinach.
  4. Spread 1/4 cup sauce in 13x9-inch baking dish.
  5. Arrange 4 lasagna noodles, then top with half the cheese mixture, 1/4 cup sauce, and some mozzarella cheese.
  6. Repeat layers, ending with noodles.
  7. Top with remaining sauce.
  8. Cover with aluminum foil and bake 40 minutes.
  9. Remove foil; top with more mozzarella (if desired).
  10. Bake 10 minutes more (uncovered) or until cheese is melted and lightly browned.
  11. Let stand 10 minutes before serving. (Serves 8)
  12. Refrigerate any leftovers.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Our Second Anniversary


© 2011 Jamie Valendy.
Two years ago, I married my best friend. Jeremy continues to be the most patient, loving, and caring husband I could ever imagine. I am truly blessed to have him by my side.

This last year has been full of so many unexpected changes - me continuing to be on disability, him having several different jobs, me going through a trial and permanent implantation of a neurostimulator (I'm now Jeremy's "cyborg wife"), me deciding not to return to graduate school (at least not in the foreseeable future), us moving to Texas (for his new job), etc... I suppose we're still living out our "for sicker or poorer" part of the vows. But, God continues to be faithful, providing us with what we need. Our relationship looks different than many others, but it's right for us. Our love for one another and for God continues to grow stronger.

Happy anniversary to my wonderful husband. You are such a blessing, and I'm so grateful for having you in my life. I love you... you're my favorite!

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Turkey Porcupines

We tried this recipe, and it was pretty good. My grandma used to make something similar to this, but I don't have her recipe. So, we found one online, and gave it a try. We really enjoyed it, and will try it again.

Turkey Porcupines
Adapted from About.com

Ingredients:
1/2 cup uncooked long grain white rice
2/3 cup water
1 tablespoon butter
1 onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 pound ground turkey
1 egg
1 teaspoon seasoned salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
1/2 cup water
1 (8 ounce) can tomato sauce
1 (14.5 ounce) can diced tomatoes, undrained
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce

Directions:
  1. Combine rice and water in small saucepan; bring to simmer over medium heat. Reduce heat to low, cover, and cook 8-10 minutes (until rice is partially cooked). Drain if necessary. Set aside.
  2. In small saucepan, cook onion and garlic in butter, until tender. Let cool for 15 minutes.
  3. In large bowl, combine ground turkey, egg, partially cooked rice, onion and garlic, seasoned salt, and pepper. Mix together well (we used our hands). Shape into 16 meatballs.
  4. In large skillet (it may help to cook meatballs in two separate skillets, and then transfer into one and add tomato mixture), heat olive oil and add meatballs. Brown carefully, turning gently to cook evenly, about 5-6 minutes.
  5. In medium bowl, combine water, tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, and Worcestershire sauce.
  6. Sprinkle sugar and thyme over meatballs.
  7. Pour tomato mixture (from step 5) over meatballs.
  8. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 30-40 minutes (until turkey is thoroughly cooked and rice is tender), stirring occasionally. Taste sauce and season, if desired.
  9. In small saucepan, prepare long grain white rice (not included in above listed ingredients).
  10. Serve meatball mixture over cooked rice.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Spinach Tomato Cheese Omelet

I've been enjoying this recipe a lot, lately. It's really easy to make, and it's delicious.

Spinach Tomato Cheese Omelet

© 2011 Jamie V.
Ingredients:
2 eggs
fresh spinach
tomatoes (Campari), cut/chopped
bacon bits (optional)
cheese, shredded
seasoning (optional - salt, pepper, basil)

Directions:
  1. Preheat skillet to medium heat.
  2. Break eggs into bowl. Beat with a fork.
  3. Stir in cut up spinach, chopped tomatoes, bacon bits, and seasoning (optional).
  4. Pour mixture into skillet, and top with shredded cheese.
  5. Cook, until eggs appear cooked (look dry) through most of the omelet.
  6. Fold omelet in half, and cook on each side, until done (1-2 minutes per side).

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Ground Turkey Stroganoff

We've tried this recipe twice, and it's great. The first time, we had it with egg noodles; and then we tried it with white rice. Both ways are delicious!

Ground Turkey Stroganoff
Adapted from Cooks.com and shallwecook.blogspot.com

Confabulation in the Kitchen
Ingredients:
1 - 1.5 pound ground turkey
1/2 cup chopped onion (or 1/2-1 tsp onion powder)
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1/3 cup milk
1 - 1.25 cup sour cream
1/4 tsp garlic powder
Salt and pepper, to taste

Directions:
  1. Heat olive oil in skillet over medium-high heat.
  2. Saute onions in oil for 2-3 minutes.
  3. Add ground turkey to onion, and heat over medium-high heat until ground turkey is browned.
  4. Drain off fat (if needed).
  5. Add soup and milk.
  6. Cook uncovered over medium heat about 16-18 minutes (may take up to 20 minutes, if using only 1 pound of meat), stirring frequently.
  7. Add sour cream and heat through.
  8. Serve over egg noodles, rice, or mashed potatoes... OR, add fennel seed to the seasonings step, then serve over biscuits (for quick Biscuits & Gravy).

Friday, October 7, 2011

Fruit Smoothies

We have the magic bullet, and we're having a great time making different smoothies in it.

Fruit Smoothie
Ingredients:
Frozen fruit (we tend to use strawberries, cherries)
Fruit juice (we like pineapple, or orange-pineapple)
* Almond milk can be used in place of some or all of the fruit juice

Directions:
  1. Place frozen fruit in blender (we use a magic bullet).
  2. Pour fruit juice over the frozen fruit (start by filling it up about three-quarters of the amount of space the frozen fruit takes up).
  3. Blend well. (if you open it and it seems too thick and/or it doesn't move at all when you tilt it, add more fruit juice and blend more)

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Baked Rosemary Chicken With Tomatoes & Simmered Italian Rice

We've tried these recipes twice now, and they're delicious. The combination of the different seasonings was great. The dishes complimented each other very well. We actually didn't have any cheese, the first time, so we made the simmered Italian rice without any cheese... it was still great... We tried it with mozzerella cheese, the second time, and it was also good.

Baked Rosemary Chicken With Tomatoes
Adapted from Cooks.com

Ingredients:
2-3 pounds skinned chicken breasts
1/4 cup flour
4 tablespoon oil
3 large onions (or onion powder)
1 teaspoon rosemary
2 medium minced garlic cloves
1 cup chicken broth
28 ounce can tomatoes (or fresh tomatoes)

- OR -

1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts
1/4 cup flour
3 Tbsp olive oil
1/2 cup diced onions (we used frozen, and we might add even more next time - especially after the chicken has been taken out of the skillet)
1/2 tsp rosemary
2 minced garlic cloves
1/2 to 2/3 cup chicken broth
14.5 ounce can tomatoes (or fresh tomatoes)

Directions:
  1. Preheat oven to 400ºF.
  2. Dust chicken pieces with flour and set aside.
  3. Heat oil in large skillet.
  4. Saute half of the onions, garlic, and rosemary.
  5. Add chicken pieces to skillet.
  6. Cook chicken pieces 4 minutes on each side, and then put in baking dish.
  7. Saute the remaining onions, garlic, and rosemary.
  8. Add tomatoes and broth to onions in skillet; cook 2 minutes.
  9. Pour liquid over chicken and bake 45 minutes, covered.
Adapted from campbellskitchen.com

Ingredients:
1-3/4 cups (14 ounces) chicken broth (can use any type of broth)
1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
3/4 cup uncooked regular long-grain white rice
1-1/2 cups chopped (fresh or frozen) spinach
1/2 cup grated cheese (optional - parmesan, mozzerella)

Directions:
  1. Heat the broth and Italian seasoning in a 2-quart saucepan over medium-high heat to a boil.\
  2. (If using frozen spinach, rinse first)
  3. Stir in spinach and rice.
  4. Reduce the heat to low.
  5. Cover and cook for 20 minutes, or until rice is tender.
  6. Stir in cheese. (we actually made it without any cheese, and it was great)
  7. Serve with additional cheese, if desired.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Flatbread Pizza

Jeremy and I love pizza! We enjoy trying different kinds of pizza crust, and combinations of toppings. We've recently been enjoying flatbread pizzas. Below is one of our favorite recipes.


Flatbread Pizza

© 2011 Jamie V.
Ingredients:
flatbread pizza (we've enjoyed Flatout flatbread and Toufayan Bakeries whole-wheat flatbread)
pizza sauce (we use Boboli)
fresh spinach
fresh tomatoes (we like Campari tomatoes)
mozzerella cheese
olive oil

Directions:
  1. Preheat oven to 400ºF.
  2. Lightly brush oil onto both sides of the flatbread. Place on cookie sheet or stone, and bake for 4 minutes.
  3. Spread desired amount of pizza sauce. Top with spinach, tomatoes, and cheese.
  4. Bake for 5-10 minutes, until cheese is melted and edges are golden brown.
  5. Slice, serve, and enjoy.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Parmesan-Crusted Tilapia & Oven-Roasted Red Potatoes

My husband and I enjoy going grocery shopping and cooking together. The problem is, though, that I often have trouble finding the energy to be able to do these things. But, we've been trying to eat better (partially because eating fresh foods limits the preservatives and potential for additives to be contributing to my pain) and try new recipes, so I thought maybe I'd share some of them here on my blog. We had parmesan-crusted tilapia with oven-roasted red potatoes and steamed (fresh) green beans. It was simply amazing! We'll definitely be repeating this meal!

Parmesan-Crusted Tilapia
Adapted from Food.com


Ingredients:
3-4 tilapia fillets
1/4 cup breadcrumbs
1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 tablespoon lemon juice
salt, pepper, garlic powder
olive oil

Directions:
  1. Preheat oven to 425ºF.
  2. Thaw and wash tilapia fillets, if frozen. Pat dry on paper towels.
  3. Combine crumbs, parmesan, Italian seasoning and garlic powder on a plate, mixing well.
  4. On a different plate, pour 1 tablespoon lemon juice.
  5. Working 1 at a time, place a fillet on the plate in the lemon juice, sprinkle with desired amount of salt (be careful about how much salt is in your parmesan, crumbs, and other seasonings), black pepper, and garlic powder (we actually just sprinkled garlic pepper salt seasoning on the fillets). Turn the fillet over in the lemon juice and sprinkle seasoning on the other side.
  6. Dredge fillet in the parmesan mixture, patting it all over to coat.
  7. Place in an oiled baking dish, repeat with remaining fillets.
  8. Sprinkle a little lemon juice over the fillets, and drizzle or spray them lightly with olive oil.
  9. Bake at 425ºF for 15-20 minutes (or until they easily flake with a fork and edges are browning - you can sprinkle some more parmesan on top, if desired.
Adapted from Allrecipes.com


Ingredients:
1 (1 ounce) envelope dry onion soup mix
2 pounds red potatoes, halved
1/3 cup olive oil

Directions:
  1. Preheat oven to 425ºF.
  2. In a large plastic bag, combine the soup mix, red potatoes, and olive oil. Close bag, and shake until potatoes are fully covered.
  3. Pour potatoes into a medium baking dish (we used an 8"x11.5" dish). Bake 30-40 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Unfailing Love by Chris Tomlin

God's unfailing love is such a beautiful gift. I'm so grateful that we have such a graceful Lord.

http://youtu.be/k_MyC6kJzPg

Unfailing Love by Chris Tomlin

You have my heart
And I am Yours forever
You are my strength
God of grace and power

[Chorus]
And everything You hold in Your hand
Still You make time for me
I can't understand
Praise You God of Earth and sky
How beautiful is Your unfailing love
Unfailing love
And You never change God You remain
The Holy One
My unfailing love
Unfailing love

You are my rock
The one I hold on to
You are my song
And I sing for You

[Chorus] (repeat)

I will praise You
Praise you God of earth and sky
How beautiful is your unfailing love
Unfailing love

And You never change God You remain
The Holy One
My Unfailing love

Unfailing love (repeat)

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Holding On and Letting Go by Ross Copperman

So, I heard this song on CSI NY, and it definitely affected me. It's a powerful song and message. I keep listening to it... it's just one of those songs that touches your soul in ways you never expected.
It's everything you wanted, it's everything you don't It's one door swinging open and one door swinging closed Some prayers find the answer, some prayers never know We're holding on, and letting go. 
http://youtu.be/ebNDJF-LhUI


Holding On And Letting Go by Ross Copperman

Is anybody out there?
Is anybody listening?
Does anybody really know,
If it's the end or the beginning?

The quiet rush from one breath,
Is all we're waiting for
Sometimes the one we're taking
Changes everyone before

[Chorus]
It's everything you wanted, it's everything you don't
It's one door swinging open and one door swinging closed
Some prayers find the answer, some prayers never know
We're holding on, and letting go.


Sometimes we're holding angels,
And we never even know
Don't know if we'll make it,
Or we know, we just can't let it show 

[Chorus]
Yeah, letting go, oho

[Chorus]

Woa, woa......Woa......
Woa, woa......Woa......

[Chorus]

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Skyscraper by Demi Lovato

I heard this song the other day, and it really moved me. It's a very powerful song and video. I've heard/read that this is a very personal song about her own struggles, but I think the message is great for everyone that is in a dark place in their life. There is still hope, and you can battle through and rise higher than ever... "like a skyscraper."

In the video, she's barefoot, making her way through a barren desert. I think the imagery is right on. In the midst of dark times, it can often feel like we're alone... trying to make our way through a barren land. But, we can make our way through it, and rise to new heights. I think skyscrapers are truly marvelous... 

It is through the resurrecting fire of the Holy Spirit that God takes the ashes of our lives and creates beauty. As I walk through difficult times, I pray:
Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me. Do not cast me from your presence or take your Holy Spirit from me. Restore to me the joy of your salvation and grant me a willing spirit, to sustain me (Psalm 51:10-12).

http://youtu.be/r_8ydghbGSg

Skyscraper by Demi Lovato

Skies are crying, I am watching
Catching teardrops in my hands
Only silence, as it's ending
Like we never had a chance

Do you have to make me feel like
There's nothing left of me?

[Chorus]
You can take everything I have
You can break everything I am
Like I'm made of glass
Like I'm made of paper
Go on and try to tear me down
I will be rising from the ground
Like a skyscraper
Like a skyscraper


As the smoke clears, I awaken
and untangle you from me
Would it make you, feel better
to watch me while I bleed?

All my windows still are broken
But I'm standing on my feet

[Chorus]

Go run, run, run
I'm gonna stay right here, watch you disappear
Yea--ohh
Go run, run, run
Yeah, it's a long way down
But I am closer to the clouds up here

[Chorus]

Like a skyscraper
Like a skyscraper
Like a skyscraper

Friday, September 23, 2011

Glass by Ross Copperman

I randomly came across this song, and it's great.
We may shine, we may shatter...We are fragile, we are human...We are shaped by the light we let through us
I think that the "light we let through us" truly does shape us. As Christians, we are called to share Jesus' love with others. Jesus tells us that “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life” (John 8:12). Allowing His light to shine through in everything we do is how we can spread His love.

It can be difficult to let others in, letting them see who you really are. But we all are fragile and imperfect. We should try not to judge one another, as we all bear our own burdens.
I'll let you look inside me... Through the stains and through the cracks... But try not to judge me... 'Cause we've walked down different paths

http://youtu.be/IFu8AYgRsog

Glass by Ross Copperman

Tryin' to live and love
With a heart that can't be broken
Is like tryin' to see the light
With eyes that can't be opened

Yea, we both carry baggage
We picked up on our way
So if you love me, do it gently
And I will do the same.

[Chorus]
We may shine, we may shatter
We may be pickin' up the pieces here on after
We are fragile, we are human
We are shaped by the light we let through us
But we break fast 'cause we are glass
'Cause we are glass

I'll let you look inside me
Through the stains and through the cracks
And in the darkness of this moment
You see the good and bad

But try not to judge me
'Cause we've walked down different paths
But it brought us here together
So I won't take that back

[Chorus]

We might be oil in water
This could be a big mistake
We might burn like gasoline and fire
It's a chance we'll have to take

[Chorus]

Saturday, August 13, 2011

He Will Carry Me by Mark Schultz

My heart is aching. A dear friend of mine lost his son, only moments after he was born. I cannot even begin to imagine the pain and emptiness of losing a child. And, yet, I mourn for the loss of a soul I never knew.

"Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted" (Matthew 5:4)

I know that there are no words that can fill the void, but I hope they know that they are in my thoughts and prayers. I cannot know the pain they're experiencing, but I will be there for them any way that I can.

Lord, please comfort and keep this family, in this time of great sorrow. Wrap your loving arms around them, and let them know that you are with them... you, too, lost your son... you know what they need, and I ask that you provide for them. I pray all of this in Jesus' name, Amen. 

Thought That Counts

Often in times of trouble
we don't know what to say,
So we choose to say nothing,
and sometimes run away.

When friends are really hurting,
we don't know what to do,
So we offer weak excuses
or say we're hurting too.

It really doesn't matter
what kind of gift we bring;
We only need to be there
if we don't bring a thing.

It truly is amazing
what a hug can do,
When heartache numbs the senses,
and friends depend on you.

There's comfort just in knowing
that you are not alone,
When tears are overflowing,
and hearts are cold as stone.

It's the loving prayers of others
that balance our accounts,
For when we measure love,
it's still the thought that counts.

~ Clay Harrison
I Remember You

The world may never notice
If a rosebud doesn't bloom
Or even pause to wonder
if the petals fall too soon.

But every life that ever forms,
Or ever comes to be
Touches the World in some small way
For all eternity.

The little ones we longed for
Were swiftly here and gone.
But the love that was then planted
Is a light that still shines on.

And though our arms are empty,
Our hearts know what to do
Every beating of my heart says
"I Remember You"


~ Author unknown

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KSFH6_IiOlw


He Will Carry Me by Mark Schultz

I call, You hear me
I've lost it all
And it's more than I can bear
I feel so empty

You're strong, I'm weary
I'm holding on
But I feel like giving in
But still You're with me

[Chorus]
And even though I'm walking
Through the valley of the shadow
I will hold tight to the hand of Him
Whose love will comfort me
And when all hope is gone
And I've been wounded in the battle
He is all the strength that I will ever need
He will carry me


I know I'm broken
But You alone
Can mend this heart of mine
You're always with me

[Chorus]
He will carry me

And even though I feel so lonely
Like I have never been before
You never said it would be easy
But You said You'd see me through the storm

[Chorus]
He will carry me
He will carry me

Friday, August 12, 2011

Teach Me To Breathe by Luke Cyrus

I heard about Luke Cyrus from another person's blog, and I feel that his music is worth sharing. His song, "Teach Me To Breathe," is so beautiful. Sometimes, it's difficult for me to remember that I'm not meant to know what tomorrow will bring. I'm to trust in God, and have faith that He will guide my steps. I pray that God will teach me to breathe.

You can check out more of Luke's music on his website:  http://lukecyrusonline.com/index.php

http://youtu.be/LOG1ktZV0AI 

Teach Me To Breathe by Luke Cyrus

What am I to do?
You know this is what I was created for
How will I know when to move
I'm waiting for some kind of open door
Well it's hard to trust when I can't see
What tomorrow will bring

[Chorus]
Teach me to breathe
Today's air
Teach me to see
Why you have placed me here not there
Teach me to believe
I place my worries into your care
Oh help me to trust in thee
Teach me to breathe

What will I become?
Father let your will be done
I'm nowhere feeling close to home
I'm nowhere near my comfort zone
Because it's hard to trust when i can't see
What tomorrow will bring

[Chorus]

What are the details of my future?
Oh give me a simple faith
They are not for me to know

What are the plans that you would have for me to do?
That I'd love one another
But most of all
To love you

[Chorus]

Today and not tomorrow's air
Teach me to see
Why you've placed me here not there
Teach me to believe
I place my worries into your care
Oh help me to trust in thee
Teach me to breathe

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

I Surrender by Kim Walker

This song speaks what my heart is sometimes unable to say:
"All to You, I surrender,
Everything, every part of me.
All to You, I surrender,
All of my dreams, all of me.

...I surrender... cause I trust you God
...all my hope is in You
...I place all my trust
...to you God
...cause your ways are far better than mine.

No turning back, I've made up my mind,
I'm giving all of my life this time."
 I pray that the Lord help me to remember and trust that I am to surrender EVERYTHING to Him, my Lord and Savior. 

"Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will" (Romans 12:2) 

"Going a little farther, he fell with his face to the ground and prayed, 'My Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me. Yet not as I will, but as you will.'" (Matthew 26:39) 

"...choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your ancestors served beyond the Euphrates, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you are living. But as for me and my household, we will serve the Lord" (Joshua 24:15) 

"No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money" (Matthew 6:24) 

"Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart. Commit your way to the Lord; trust in him and he will do this: He will make your righteous reward shine like the dawn, your vindication like the noonday sun. Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him; do not fret when people succeed in their ways, when they carry out their wicked schemes" (Psalm 37:4-7)  

"For many are invited, but few are chosen" (Matthew 22:14) 

"And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose" (Romans 8:28) 

"The Lord makes firm the steps of the one who delights in him" (Psalm 37:23)  

"Do not suppose that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I did not come to bring peace, but a sword. For I have come to turn a man against his father, a daughter against her mother,  a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law—a man’s enemies will be the members of his own household. Anyone who loves their father or mother more than me is not worthy of me; anyone who loves their son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. Whoever does not take up their cross and follow me is not worthy of me. Whoever finds their life will lose it, and whoever loses their life for my sake will find it" (Matthew 10:34-39) 

"For I know the plans I have for you,' declares the Lord, 'plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future'" (Jeremiah 29:11) 

"A person’s steps are directed by the Lord. How then can anyone understand their own way?" (Proverbs 20:24) 

"In their hearts humans plan their course, but the Lord establishes their steps" (Proverbs 16:9)  

"Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight" (Proverbs 3:5-6)  

"I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you with my loving eye on you" (Psalm 32:8)  

"Show me your ways, Lord, teach me your paths" (Psalm 25:4)  

"The Lord will guide you always; he will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land and will strengthen your frame. You will be like a well-watered garden, like a spring whose waters never fail" (Isaiah 58:11)

There is a long article that really fleshes out The Full Surrender. I haven't quite finished reading the entire thing, but it's been interesting and though-provoking.


I Surrender by Kim Walker 

There is no love, sweeter than the love You pour on me.
There is no song, sweeter than the song You sing to me.
There is no place, that I would rather be,
Than here at Your feet, laying down everything.

[Chorus]
All to You, I surrender,
Everything, every part of me.
All to You, I surrender,
All of my dreams, all of me.

If worship's like perfume, I'll pour mine out on You.
For there is none as deserving of my love like You.
So take my hand and draw me into You,
I want to be swept away, lost in love for You.

[Chorus] [repeat]

I surrender, I surrender (cause I trust you God)
O, I surrender (all my hope is in You)
And I surrender (I place all my trust)
O, I surrender (to you God)
O, I surrender (cause your ways are far better than mine)
OOOOoooo, I surrender... yea yea
All to you, all to you, yea yea.

O, I surrender, I surrender
I surrender (all to you, my God)
O, I surrender, I surrender
I surrender... OOooooh...

No turning back, I've made up my mind,
I'm giving all of my life this time. [repeat] 

Your love makes it worth it,
Your love makes it worth it all,
Your love makes it worth it all. [repeat]

Your love makes it worth it,
Your love makes it worth it all,
Your love makes it worth it all. [repeat]

[Chorus]

Your love makes it worth it,
Your love makes it worth it all,
Your love makes it worth it all. [repeat]

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Lift Me Up by The Afters



This song is so uplifting. I'm not good with waiting, but I'm grateful to have a God that loves me and lifts me up. It's hard to let go, but that's what we're called to do... to let go of our worries, doubts, fears, etc... What an amazing Lord we have to carry us and love us unconditionally! I hope that this song touches you, as it did me.


Lift Me Up by The Afters

You lift me up with your love
You lift me up with your love
You lift me up with your love
You lift me up

Waiting for the sunrise
Waiting for the day
Waiting for a sign
That I’m where you want me to be

You know my heart is heavy
And the hurt is deep
But when I feel like giving up
You’re reminding me
That we all fall down sometimes
But when I hit the ground

[Chorus]
You lift me up when I am weak
Your arms wrap around me
Your love catches me so I’m letting go
You lift me up when I can’t see
Your heart is all that I need
Your love carries me so I’m letting go

You lift me up with your love
You lift me up with your love
You lift me up with your love
You lift me up

I know I’m not perfect
I know I make mistakes
I know that I have let you down
But you love me the same

And when I’m surrounded
When I lose my way
When I’m crying out and falling down
You are here to

Lift me up when I am weak
[Chorus]

I can see the dawn is breaking
I am feeling overtaken with your love
With your love
I don’t know what I can offer
In this moment I surrender to your love
To your love

You lift me up when I am weak
Your arms wrap around me
Your love catches me so I’m letting go

[Chorus]

I can see the dawn is breaking
I am feeling overtaken with your love

You lift me up with your love
You lift me up with your love
You lift me up with your love
You lift me up

Monday, August 1, 2011

Clinging to the Cross by Tim Hughes & Brooke Fraser

I've never heard this song before, but I ran across (and liked) it. It reminds me of the hymn, "The Old Rugged Cross."

On the cross, Jesus paid the price for our defiance of God' law. He died in our place... paid for our sin... took our judgment on Himself. He died on the cross, so that we can live.

"God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God" (2 Corinthians 5:21)

"For Christ also suffered once for sins, the righteous for the unrighteous, to bring you to God. He was put to death in the body but made alive in the Spirit" (1 Peter 3:18)

The cross forever freed us from the fear of death. Through the perspective that the cross gives us, death is only gain.

"For since death came through a man, the resurrection of the dead comes also through a man" (1 Corinthians 15:21)

"For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life" (John 3:16)

"I'll cherish the old rugged cross,
till my trophies at last I lay down;
I will cling to the old rugged cross,
and exchange it some day for a crown" (The Old Rugged Cross)

But, the cross also frees us from the fear of life. Before Jesus died on the cross of Calvary, man was living without power against the temptations that come with living in a fallen world. But, the cross of Christ allowed us access to God's power... enabling us to say "no" to sin. It's through Jesus' death that we are freed from sin's tyranny, and that we can pursue holiness and righteousness.

"For we know that our old self was crucified with him so that the body ruled by sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves to sin— because anyone who has died has been set free from sin... For sin shall no longer be your master, because you are not under the law, but under grace" (Romans 6:6-7, 14)

"Each moment of every day we choose whom we wish to follow. If it's the Savior, the benefits are many. If it is sin, the consequences are destructive and miserable. Before Christ, we had no choice. Sin was our one and only route. All of life was marked by unrighteousness. But once we came to the Cross and gave the Lord Jesus the right to rule our lives, we were granted a choice we never had before. Grace freed us from the requirement to serve sin, allowing us the opportunity to follow Christ's directives voluntarily" (Charles Swindoll)

Every time we are faced with temptation, we can find strength in Jesus. Perhaps this is one of the reasons we cling to the cross, as someone clings to a life preserver after falling overboard.

"Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need" (Hebrews 4:16)

The cross shows us that God has loved each of us "with an everlasting love" (Jeremiah 31:3) from the dawn of time.

So, we cling to and cherish the cross because we know that Jesus died on it for our sins, that it's through the cross that Jesus freed us from the bondage of sin, and that it's the clearest revelation of God's love. But, it's also an invitation to all to enter into relationship with Him. The cross invites each of us to turn from sin, and enter into a relationship with Christ. God wants to walk with us through life, guide us when we face tough decisions, bear our burdens, share our joys... God wants a relationship with each of us. 

"Just as Moses lifted up the snake in the wilderness, so the Son of Man must be lifted up, that everyone who believes may have eternal life in him.” For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him" (John 3:14-17)



Clinging to the Cross by Tim Hughes & Brooke Fraser

My soul is weak
My heart is numb
I cannot see
But still my hope is found in You
I’ll hold on tightly
You will never let me go
For Jesus, You will never fail
Jesus, You will never fail

[Chorus]
Simply to the cross I cling
Letting go of all earthly things
Clinging to the cross
Mercy’s found a way for me
Hope is here as I am free
Jesus, You are all I need
Clinging to the cross

Even darkness is as light to You, my Lord
So light the way and lead me home
To that place where every tear is wiped away
For Jesus, You will never fail
Jesus, You will never fail

[Chorus]

What a Saviour, what a story
You were crucified but now You are alive
So amazing, such a mystery
You were crucified but now You are alive

[Chorus]

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Shadowfeet by Brooke Fraser

I've heard this song many times before, but it really touched me tonight.

This world is a shadow land, and the more real land/life lays beyond. We live in the shadow land... but the Christian perspective is eternal, and life with God is the more real land... where we put our faith and hope, and find meaning. It is in God that "I'll be found in you, still standing" for eternity.

Lord, please help me remember that this life is a gift, but to keep my eyes on You.


Shadowfeet by Brooke Fraser

Walking, stumbling on these shadowfeet
Toward home, a land that I've never seen
I am changing
Less and less asleep
Made of different stuff than when I began
And I have sensed it all along
Fast approaching is the day

[Chorus]
When the world has fallen out from under me
I'll be found in you, still standing
When the sky rolls up and mountains fall on their knees
When time and space are through
I'll be found in you


There's distraction buzzing in my head
Saying in the shadows it's easier to stay
But I've heard rumours of true reality
Whispers of a well-lit way

[Chorus]

You make all things new (repeat)

[Chorus]

When the world has fallen out from under me
I'll be found in you, still standing
Every fear and accusation under my feet
When time and space are through
I'll be found in you
When time and space are through
I'll be found in you
When time and space are through
I'll be found in you

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Heal The Wound by Point of Grace

This song is so beautiful. I came across the song from a friend's blog, and it touched my heart.

We all have wounds in our hearts... from sin in our lives, or painful things that happen along the journey. Regardless of what the wound is from, it's important that we have a scar to remind us of what God taught us through the pain. Our scars should lead us to praise God for His love and mercy, and remind us that there is beauty in suffering. We should ask God to use our scars to reach out and encourage others, whose wounds are fresh. Don't be afraid to let your scars show.

Lord, I pray that for each wound you heal in my life, you leave a scar... to remind me of your mercy and love. Use them to bring me to my knees in awe of your mercy, and to remind me to have compassion for others. 

"But those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint." (Isaiah 40:31)

"Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you." (1 Peter 5:7)


Heal the Wound by Point of Grace

I used to wish that I could rewrite history
I used to dream that each mistake could be erased
Then I could just pretend
I never knew the me back then

I used to pray that You would take this shame away
Hide all the evidence of who I've been
But it's the memory of
The place You brought me from
That keeps me on my knees
And even though I'm free

[Chorus]
Heal the wound but leave the scar
A reminder of how merciful You are
I am broken, torn apart
Take the pieces of this heart
And heal the wound but leave the scar

I have not lived a life that boasts of anything
I don't take pride in what I bring
But I'll build an altar with
The rubble that You've found me in

And every stone will sing
Of what You can redeem

[Chorus]  

Don't let me forget
Everything You've done for me
Don't let me forget
The beauty in the suffering

[Chorus] 

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Stronger by Mandisa

What a powerful song! These are the words that I so badly need to hear and know. God has promised to always be with me... to never leave me. He knows that things will sometimes be tough, and that I am going to sin... but, He has promised to love me unconditionally and never to forsake me. It's difficult for me to wrap my mind around, so I must hold these promises in my heart.
'Cause if He started this work in your life
He will be faithful to complete it
If only you believe it
He knows how much it hurts
And I'm sure that He's gonna help you get through this
We have such an amazing Lord! May we each remember His promises. Thanks be to God!

"Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you." (Deuteronomy 31:6)

"Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have, because God has said, 'Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.'" (Hebrews 13:5)

"'So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.'" (Isaiah 41:10)

"Yet I am always with you; you hold me by my right hand. You guide me with your counsel, and afterward you will take me into glory." (Psalm 73:23-24) 

"Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age." (Matthew 28:19-20)

"Because of my integrity you uphold me and set me in your presence forever." (Psalm 41:12)

"Where can I go from your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence? If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there. If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea, even there your hand will guide me, your right hand will hold me fast." (Psalm 139:7-10)


Stronger by Mandisa

Hey, heard you were up all night
Thinking about how your world ain't right
And you wonder if things will ever get better
And you're asking why is it always raining on you
When all you want is just a little good news
Instead of standing there stuck out in the weather

Oh, don't hang your head
It's gonna end
God's right there
Even if it's hard to see Him
I promise you that He still cares

[Chorus]
When the waves are taking you under
Hold on just a little bit longer
He knows that this is gonna make you stronger, stronger
The pain ain't gonna last forever
And things can only get better
Believe me
This is gonna make you stronger
Gonna make you stronger, stronger, stronger
Believe me, this is gonna make you stronger

Try and do the best you can
Hold on and let Him hold your hand
And go on and fall into the arms of Jesus
Oh, lift your head it's gonna end
God's right there
Even when you just can't feel Him
I promise you that He still cares

[Chorus]

'Cause if He started this work in your life
He will be faithful to complete it
If only you believe it
He knows how much it hurts
And I'm sure that He's gonna help you get through this

When the waves are taking you under
Hold on just a little bit longer
He knows that this is gonna make you stronger, stronger
The pain ain't gonna last forever
In time it's gonna get better
Believe me
This is gonna make you stronger

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Give Me Your Eyes by Brandon Heath

Our world is so busy and fast-paced that we often get wrapped up in our own little worlds and never even see those around us that might need a helping hand. This is a good reminder to slow down and try to see things from God's eyes. There are so many things that we can do to help each other through difficult times, even if it's just a simple smile or "hello."


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P5AkNqLuVgY 

Give Me Your Eyes by Brandon Heath

Looked down from a broken sky
Traced out by the city lights
My world from a mile high
Best seat in the house tonight

Touched down on the cold black tar
Hold on for the sudden stop
Breathe in the familiar shock
Of confusion and chaos

All those people going somewhere
Why have I never cared?

Chorus:
     Give me Your eyes for just one second
     Give me Your eyes so I can see
     Everything that I keep missing
     Give me Your love for humanity

     Give me Your arms for the broken hearted
     The ones that are far beyond my reach?
     Give me Your heart for the one's forgotten
     Give me Your eyes so I can see
     Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah

Step out on a busy street
See a girl and our eyes meet
Does her best to smile at me
To hide what's underneath

There's a man just to her right
Black suit and a bright red tie
Too ashamed to tell his wife
He's out of work, he's buying time

All those people going somewhere
Why have I never cared?

[Chorus]

I've been there a million times
A couple of million eyes just moving past me by
I swear I never thought that I was wrong

Well, I want a second glance
So give me a second chance
To see the way You see the people all alone

[Chorus]

Give me Your eyes for just one second
Give me Your eyes so I can see
Everything that I keep missing
That I keep missing

Give me Your arms for the broken hearted
The ones that are far beyond my reach?
Give me Your heart for the one's forgotten
Give me Your eyes so I can see
Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah
Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Wait and See by Brandon Heath

I've always loved this song, but it can be difficult for me to really listen to. I know deep in my heart that God has great plans for me, but it can be very hard to see or remember that in the midst of so much pain.

I've always had trouble waiting. I'm not a very patient person, when it comes to plans and my future. But, all of this is teaching (sort of forcing) me to wait - it's forcing me to wait, but it's teaching me to wait more patiently and trust in God's timing. Like the last verse of this song, my prayer is: 
GOD, teach me to trust You
Teach me to follow You
Teach me about You
GOD, bless us
GOD, lead us


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=typAqPJ-Zn8

Wait And See by Brandon Heath

I was born in Tennessee, late July humidity,
Doctors said I was lucky to be alive
I've been troubled since the day that I got here,
Troubled to the day I disappear
That'll be the day that I finally get it right

Chorus:
There is hope, for me yet,
Because God won't forget,
All the plans HE's made for me
I have to wait and see,
HE's not finished with me yet,
HE's not finished with me yet


I never really was that good in school;
Talked too much, broke the rules
My teachers thought I was a hopeless fool, all right.
I don't know how but I made it through,
It's one of those things you gotta do
I always had a knack for telling the truth.

[Chorus]

Still wonderin' why I'm here.
Still wrestling with my fear

But oh... HE's up to something,
And the farther out I go,
I've seen enough to know
That I'm not here for nothin'...
He's up to somethin'.

So now's my time to be a man,
Follow my heart as far as I can
No tellin' where I'm ending up tonight
I never slow down (or so it seems),
But singing my heart is one of my dreams
All I gotta do is hold on tight.

[Chorus]
HE's not finished with me yet,
HE's not finished with me yet

GOD, teach me to trust You
Teach me to follow You
Teach me about You
GOD, bless us
GOD, lead us

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Blessings by Laura Story


Every time I hear this song, I get goosebumps. It's an absolutely beautiful reminder of God's amazing love for us. When times are difficult, it's human nature to wonder "why?" and try to make sense of it. Asking "why?" doesn't mean that I don't trust Him, or love Him any less in the difficult times of life. Through my doubt, my faith is seeking understanding - it's not weakening, it's trying to grow stronger.

God knows what we need before we ask Him (Matthew 6:8). Especially in the midst of trials, though, it's difficult to consider that they're "mercies in disguise." But, God places the trials and obstacles that we need in our paths, so that we can grow and become the people He calls us to be. Sometimes He may overwhelm us with trials, so that we realize that we cannot do it all on our own, but must lean into His grace. 

"But he said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me" (2 Corinthians 12:9). It may be of some comfort to know that it's in the moments you feel weak and vulnerable that you're most ready to receive God's wisdom, peace, understanding, and strength.

There's an interesting article that I ran across that's called Don't Lose Heart by Cliff Young (it's a bit of a read, but I think it's worth it). He starts the article with a quote by Soren Kierkegaard: "Prayer does not change God, but changes him who prays."



http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SGniRk_GcLs

Blessings by Laura Story

We pray for blessings
We pray for peace
Comfort for family, protection while we sleep
We pray for healing, for prosperity
We pray for Your mighty hand to ease our suffering
All the while, You hear each spoken need
Yet love is way too much to give us lesser things

Chorus:
'Cause what if your blessings come through raindrops
What if Your healing comes through tears
What if a thousand sleepless nights are what it takes to know You're near
What if trials of this life are Your mercies in disguise

We pray for wisdom
Your voice to hear
We cry in anger when we cannot feel You near
We doubt your goodness, we doubt your love
As if every promise from Your Word is not enough
All the while, You hear each desperate plea
And long that we'd have faith to believe

[Chorus]

When friends betray us
When darkness seems to win
We know that pain reminds this heart
That this is not our home
It's not our home

'Cause what if your blessings come through raindrops
What if Your healing comes through tears
What if a thousand sleepless nights are what it takes to know You're near
What if my greatest disappointments
Or the aching of this life
Is the revealing of a greater thirst this world can't satisfy
What if trials of this life
The rain, the storms, the hardest nights
Are your mercies in disguise

Monday, May 2, 2011

I Won't Let Go by Rascal Flatts

My sister has been wanting me to listen to this song, and I finally did today. Wow! It really touched my heart in a way that I never expected. Thank you, my 'lil dove. :-)


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Af8mB9ABuJA


I Won't Let Go by Rascal Flatts

It’s like a storm
That cuts a path
It breaks your will
It feels like that
You think you're lost
But you're not lost
On your own
You're not alone 

I will stand by you
I will help you through
When you’ve done all you can do
And you can’t cope
I will dry your eyes
I will fight your fight
I will hold you tight
And I won't let go

It hurts my heart
To see you cry
I know it’s dark
This part of life
Oh, it finds us all
And we’re too small
To stop the rain
Oh, but when it rains

I will stand by you
I will help you through
When you’ve done all you can do
And you can’t cope
I will dry your eyes
I will fight your fight
I will hold you tight
And I won't let you fall

Don’t be afraid to fall
I’m right here to catch you
I won't let you down
It won't get you down
You're gonna make it
Yeah, I know you can make it

Cause I will stand by you
I will help you through
When you’ve done all you can do
And you can’t cope
And I will dry your eyes
I will fight your fight
I will hold you tight
And I won't let go

Oh I’m gonna hold you
And I won't let go
Won't let you go
No, I won't

Friday, April 1, 2011

Behind the Scenes by Francesca Battistelli

This song is simply amazing! I feel like it's so true in so many ways for me. I've always tried to have everything at least look like it's okay... even if things are anything but... Those that are the closest to me know that about me, and I love that they look past my mask.

Since my accident, everything has been in such turmoil. But, as the song says, "things aren't always what they seem, you're only seeing part of me"... and even I'm only seeing part of me. "There's more than you could ever know behind the scenes"... I know that God is doing amazing things in my heart and in my life, but it's so hard to trust and have faith in such difficult times. The lines of this song, "when it's hard to find hope in the unseen, I have peace in knowing it will find me" reminds me of how full of love and grace our God truly is. Thanks be to God!




http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sc2XCkJX6c0

Behind the Scenes by Francesca Battistelli

You may think
I’m just fine
How could anything
Ever be out of line?

I take my time
To set the stage
To make sure everything
Is all in place

Even though I’ve got the lines rehearsed
A picture only paints a thousand words

Chorus:
Things aren’t always what they seem
You’re only seeing part of me
There’s more than you could ever know
Behind the scenes
I’m incomplete and I’m undone
But I suppose like everyone
There’s so much more that’s going on
Behind the scenes

Sometimes I can’t see
Anything
Through the dark
Surrounding me
And at times I’m unsure
About the ground
Beneath my feet
If it’s safe and sound

When it’s hard to find hope in the unseen
I have peace in knowing it will find me

(Chorus)

You may think I’m just fine
How could anything ever be out of line?

(Chorus)