What Does This Mean?

Pray | Father, draw me near to the empty tomb that I might become full. Amen.

WHAT DOES THIS MEAN?

There was a time in my journey when chocolate bunnies and new dresses loomed a little too large for me on Easter morning. Glad to hear of the empty tomb, though not grasping the gratitude and joy that could have gripped my soul and song. I showed up to Easter a little shallow in my faith (a truth, not a judgment), and upon reflection, a little confused on what it all meant. But maybe I was just a little like the women at the empty tomb and the disciples in the upper room, not grasping the reality of what was unfolding.

Read |Luke 24-1-9, 36-39

Luke 24-1-9
On the first day of the week, very early in the morning, the women took the spices they had prepared and went to the tomb. They found the stone rolled away from the tomb, but when they entered, they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus. While they were wondering about this, suddenly, two men in clothes that gleamed like lightning stood beside them. In their fright the women bowed down with their faces to the ground, but the men said to them, “Why do you look for the living among the dead? He is not here; he has risen! Remember how he told you, while he was still with you in Galilee: ‘The Son of Man must be delivered over to the hands of sinners, be crucified and on the third day be raised again.’ ” Then they remembered his words.

When they came back from the tomb, they told all these things to the Eleven and to all the others. It was Mary Magdalene, Joanna, Mary the mother of James, and the others with them who told this to the apostles. But they did not believe the women, because their words seemed to them like nonsense.

Luke 24:36-39
While they were still talking about this, Jesus himself stood among them and said to them, “Peace be with you.”

They were startled and frightened, thinking they saw a ghost.  He said to them, “Why are you troubled, and why do doubts rise in your minds? Look at my hands and my feet. It is I myself! Touch me and see; a ghost does not have flesh and bones, as you see I have.”

Reflection |

Startled, troubled and frightened are not likely the words that come to mind when we think about Easter. But if “He is not here, He is risen!” is true, then this changes everything!

If you find your own faith journey sometimes confusing, troubled, or even a little shallow, be as gentle with yourself as the one who beckons you to come and see that He is not in the tomb. In him there is no condemnation, but a calling to come and see what the Lord has done, to feel his touch and know he is near. He is risen, indeed!

Where are you in your faith journey this week? What does the empty tomb mean to you personally?

Today’s devotion was written for and originally published in DailyLife Devotionals for Five Oaks Church

Is this really about the Sabbath?

Pray |Lord, as I read your word, help me to really know it so that I can walk it out as I interact with others.

In the story of the disciples picking wheat on the Sabbath, at first glance it might seem the tension is about keeping the Sabbath; but maybe it’s not. Sometimes real issues are clouded beneath frustrations felt and words said. There are times we just don’t say what we really mean.

Read |Matthew 12:1-8

At that time Jesus went through the grainfields on the Sabbath. His disciples were hungry and began to pick some heads of grain and eat them. When the Pharisees saw this, they said to him, “Look! Your disciples are doing what is unlawful on the Sabbath.”

He answered, “Haven’t you read what David did when he and his companions were hungry? He entered the house of God, and he and his companions ate the consecrated bread—which was not lawful for them to do, but only for the priests.  Or haven’t you read in the Law that the priests on Sabbath duty in the temple desecrate the Sabbath and yet are innocent? I tell you that something greater than the temple is here. If you had known what these words mean, ‘I desire mercy, not sacrifice,’ you would not have condemned the innocent. For the Son of Man is Lord of the Sabbath.”

Reflection 

When Jesus responds to the Pharisees, you can kind of feel the tension in his response. Haven’t you read? Aren’t you aware that David ate the consecrated bread? Haven’t you read about the priests on Sabbath duty in the temple? And you know these words: “I desire mercy not sacrifice.” Jesus knows his audience. He knows the Pharisees know what David did. They know that priests have work to do even on the Sabbath, and he knows they have ignored God’s word on desiring mercy, not sacrifice.

Maybe the Pharisees had been so long in looking for violations of the law that the intent of the law was no longer within sight. Perhaps this response to Jesus was less about the Sabbath and more about them looking to bring him down and take him out – his upside down kingdom was certainly messing with the established rank and order of the day.

One of our takeaways from these verses might be to examine our hearts and check our vision. When something inside wants to sling words, accusations, or our own (perceived) righteousness, could we instead take a breath, inhale grace, and offer mercy? The reality is, sometimes that’s difficult. But we are not alone in this journey, Jesus is with us walking through the office and sitting at family tables. He’s in our hearts as we peruse and comment on all manner of things we see and hear on that world wide web. If we pause, we might just hear him ask, “Hey, child of mine, haven’t you read. . . ?”

Does our response to Jesus impact our response to others?

Today’s devotion was written for and originally published in DailyLife Devotionals for Five Oaks Church

Hello NEW YEAR – Day 3

Pray | 

Lord, you know the number of hairs on my head, have seen my days, and have made a way for me. May I truly trust you this year.  

If you have left the previous year with joy in your heart and contentment in your soul, then rejoice and be glad in that! Or maybe you find yourself walking a new path this year that’s difficult, lonely, has traces of regret, or looks uncertain; maybe joy just isn’t coming easily. In our jobs, churches, and daily living we are shoulder to shoulder with ones who are in really good places as well as ones who carry heavy weights and shed quiet tears. If the latter is you, take heart because splashed all over the Bible are good and true words that call us to lift up our face.
Read |

Isaiah 43:18-19
Forget the former things, do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up, do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the dry land.

Lamentations 3: 22-24
Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. I say to myself, “The Lord is my portion; therefore I will wait for him.”

Revelation 21:5
He who was seated on the throne said, “I am making everything new!” Then he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.”

We have a tendency to ruminate on regret, anger and frustration, and no one’s better at beating ourselves up over the former things than our own selves. But God tells us not to dwell on the past, his word says to put our eyes forward to look for the new thing he is doing. If we’re lost in a wilderness or walking in a dry land, God says he’s making a way and creating streams. Do we perceive it? And God loves us so much, has such compassion that even when it feels like we are, we cannot be consumed by grief, anger, heartache, disappointment, or fill in the blank. In addition to all of that, believe it or not, his compassions never fail, his mercies are new, waiting each and every morning; we can hang on, he is indeed faithful to make everything new.

Consider pausing to assess how you’re really doing before pushing through this first month of the year. What do you believe you need from God and others to move through these days?

The Book of Job ~ Day 3 of 3

Pray | Lord, may I turn to you, your Word, your Truth, and your promises when I am confused.

I JUST NEED TO TALK TO GOD

As we read through Job we see that he holds on to what he knows is true, he has done no wrong. After the ongoing, sometimes long winded (hello Elihu), monologues of friends, Job really just wants to talk to God. He wants to hear what God has to say, he begs to plead his case directly to the Judge, while also realizing God’s wisdom is so profound that Job couldn’t actually dispute him, but what he could do is plead for mercy. The wisdom in Job is this – I just need to talk to God. After loss, grief, pain, standing in integrity, then questioning, blaming, shaming and careless words, I love how chapter 38 begins, “Then the Lord spoke to Job out of the storm.” For what a storm it had been.

Read |  Job 38-42

Reflect | 

God gives this tour of the universe, asking if Job was there at the earth’s foundation, asking if he had given orders to the morning, entered the storehouses of snow, and on and on. God speaks in incredible detail about land, sea, animals, birth and more, showing Job (and us) It’s just not all about you. When God says to Job – Ok you do it, you run this universe, unleash your fury, crush the wicked where they stand, it creates a moment of deep humbling. I can’t think of one person who would truly believe they could run the universe; some of us might think we could run our universe, but given that power we’d see that so many other people and events are tied to ours that it would be beyond overwhelming to our eyes, hearts and minds and we would immediately realize our limitations.

The Bible Project’s podcast on Job points out God is displaying that the world is in order, but there can still be suffering because in many ways “it’s still got wild in it, and it’s still dangerous.” Not to mention the free will part and also the evil that exists. In the end Job’s response boils down to, I thought I knew, but now I know I don’t. I thought too highly of my abilities to understand how things work, and his mind, heart and posture changed.  I love when God points out that Job did speak this truth – he didn’t deserve what happened to him, it wasn’t anything he did.

We are so very intelligent, sending rockets to space – for science and now even for pleasure. We have learned incredible secrets of the universe, and can do more and know more than ever before, and what we don’t know we Google! We want to know and understand everything, and when we don’t, when things just don’t make any sense, when it seems there cannot be sense made of some things, what do we do? Do we write off God? Do we silently tell him, If I don’t see any good in this then you’re not good? Do we possibly want a God we are equal to?

Our true best hope in dark and confusing times is in humility before God. I don’t get this, it makes no sense, I am sure this grieves even your heart Lord. but I trust you still. To some this will make no sense, you have to know God to trust him. Understanding God’s character and deep love is a path to trusting him; and the truth is we can’t humble ourselves before someone we don’t trust.

Do you know and trust God? Where does your mind tend to go when you can’t make sense of things or events? When it seems God isn’t intervening, do you trust him still? What storm do you need God to speak out of?

The Book of Job ~ Day 2 of 3

Pray | Lord, you are good and trustworthy; by your Holy Spirit, help me to believe that when I’m confused by the difficult and tragic things of this world.

BUT IS HE REALLY RIGHTEOUS?

In the book of Job, in a counsel meeting of sorts, Satan tells God that Job, a man the Lord Himself called blameless and upright, is only that way because God has blessed him over and over, of course Job is a good man because he’s rewarded for it. And so begins the loss, suffering and responses of this man of integrity, this man who fears God and shuns evil.

Read |  Job 1 – 2

Reflect | 
In the Bible Project Podcast’s on Job they submit that the question of Job is “If God is just shouldn’t the world always be run by the principle of just compensation?” They surmise that what Satan might be saying to God is that if righteous people are always rewarded doesn’t that have potential to corrupt their righteousness? Will we maintain a posture of righteousness if, or really when, we suffer?

This question has had my mind busy this week; suddenly the book of Job wasn’t just about this man who was experiencing unexpected tragedy, but about me and my beliefs, which I now realize might sometimes fall under the just compensation theory. How many times has my heart whispered up to God, But they’re such good people, please, please fix this. Is it possible some of us accidentally, maybe sometimes believe that because God is good and just that he would, or even should, make sure that good begets good?

When situations don’t seem fair, that is a critical time to lean into God, to ask ourselves if we really believe and trust God. Could we pause to acknowledge I’m feeling like this seems not okay from my vantage point, but then also consider and trust that it has passed through the hands of God, taking in that his complexity and perspective is so much wider and deeper than ours – much more than our brains can even conceive. And that sometimes things and people grieve even his heart too.

In the podcast when speaking of our own limitations, they mention that dogs can’t learn algebra. In talking this through with my daughter Erin, she added, “And dogs don’t need to know algebra. We’re like that too, we don’t need to know everything; that to know everything is actually beyond our brains and capacity.” This is wisdom, to know we can’t know it all . . . but we can know the One who does.

Can you think of a situation where you maybe believed that good begets good? When was the last time you were confused by a suffering that hit you or someone you love? How did you, or do you, manage your confusion when that happens?

Feel free to comment, we can all learn from each other.

Written originally for Five Oaks Church Daily Life Devotional

The Book of Job ~ Day 1 of 3

Pray | Lord, by your Holy Spirit, help me to seek and value wisdom as I walk in this day, and then day by day, for all of my days.

THE MAN WHO LOST SO MUCH

This week we’re looking at wisdom in the book of Job. When I consider the book of Job my first thoughts are of a righteous and good man who suffers horrific loss through no fault of his own. There’s an example of friendship ~ friends who travel to sympathize and comfort Job, who are so pained to see their friend’s great suffering that they simply sit in silence with him for seven days and nights (I want to be that friend). At some point though they do begin speaking their many thoughts and sharing their beliefs about how God works and about what Job must have done to be on the receiving end of this tragedy. But Job knows what he knows – he is innocent and he clings to that truth. Eventually confusion enters, Why, God, why? If God is just, why am I suffering so? Eventually the Lord speaks, not answering Job’s question directly, but giving an answer nonetheless. We’ll begin in chapter 28, which is about where wisdom is found.

Read |  Job 28

Reflect | 

In this chapter the search is on for silver, copper, gold, onyx, crystal, topaz and even more precious gems. The author describes how we tunnel through rock, lay bare the roots of mountains, and search rivers to find what is valuable. While we aren’t out mining for what we believe is valuable, maybe we’re expending much time and energy seeking other things we believe matter most – personal satisfaction, financial gain, comfort, the best job, status, relationships, distraction or even reaching the end of our to do list. Not that these things are bad or wrong, but the question may be about how much time and energy we also invest in seeking God’s wisdom. And by the way, where does wisdom dwell? Where can we find it? Job reveals that it is with God, who views everything, to the ends of the earth. While we, like viewing a parade, just see the portion in front of us and have recollections of what has already passed. But to view and consider everything to the ends of the earth is not ours to have. Wisdom is with the One who knows and has seen it all.

Today let’s consider if we truly see wisdom as something to be valued. And if it is, do we seek it as such? Do you believe wisdom lies with God?

Written originally for Five Oaks Church Daily Life Devotional

Devoted to Devotionals?

I’m reading two devotion books currently, Savor by Shauna Niequist is one of them; at first glance I thought it was a little simple, but what I’ve discovered as I’ve read through it the last few years is that Shauna is relational, open and authentic. (And she includes some fantastic recipes in this book!) Day by day she covers great topics, and asks good, self-reflective questions. I appreciate her voice as a part of my morning, and the truth is that simple can lead us to deeper and more complex places. (I remember my pastor, Stan Buck, once saying, “People sometimes want deeper teaching, but if I only ever preached “Love your neighbor as yourself”, we’d have all the depth we need.” — Powerful.)

My other (and all time favorite) devotion book is My Utmost for His Highest by Oswald Chambers. This guy doesn’t mess around, he shoots straight, and isn’t inclined to be concerned about our feelings. He teaches and explains scripture, as well as challenges and elevates me to desire to bring my own utmost to each day. I have been reading this devotional every year for over 15 years, and it’s still fresh and challenging on the daily. He’s on a first name basis with me after all our years together!

Devotionals can be so good, they can be enriching, inspiring, challenging, and helpful; they have a place in my quiet time, BUT, they cannot take the place of the Word itself. In September of 2020 Jen Wilkin wrote an article in Christianity Today titled Your Devotional is not a Bible. Just the title of the article alone was such a word of truth and so convicting and I left that article out in the open for almost a year.

How many times have I a grabbed a devotion book instead of the bible because I was short on time, or energy or, um, devotion to God? Devotion is defined as love, loyalty, or enthusiasm for a person, activity, or cause. Am I as devoted to God as I am to MYself, MY time, MY energy, MY to do list?

Here’s what I know, I cannot hear the voice of God if I don’t know the Word of God. I will only know his voice if I read His Word. While it’s good to receive words of comfort from a friend or book, it’s like salve when it comes from God. It’s easier for me to yield to correction from God than from any other source. It’s in the reading of the Word, praying and listening that my spirit is closest to God – he corrects, comforts, teaches, empowers, leads, strengthens, and encourages me.

Admittedly, it’s easy to get distracted and cut it short or not even enter into that time. A recent insight I’ve discovered about myself is that the days I haven’t met with God first because I’m “so busy”, it’s like I feel I have to accomplish even more to justify pushing God aside that day. But it’s like a chasing of the wind because at the end of those days there’s still something that’s not satisfied. But when I’ve sat quietly with God my days flow more as if everything that takes place and gets done is bonus – the most important minutes have been invested wisely and my soul is much more content throughout the day.

Here’s a bonus of devoted time to God on the regular, when I hit difficult places, I’m already disciplined to be near God, so in those times I find I naturally move a little closer to him and his word. In those times what I read and have planted in my heart is drawn up and out. So you’d think devotion to God’s writing would be a no brainer, and yet I submit that it can be a struggle to keep this a priority and discipline.

The reality is that there are many voices that want to speak into us, some are so good and needed, and I’m so thankful for that. Some are simply not true, or have a perspective that might be off, so the voice I want to have the most influence on me is the Lord’s. And that will be so when I have not neglected His word for someone else’s.

Lessons in the Layoff

I remember the day well, October 7, 2019 — I was at my sister’s for a ten day stay with my nephew while she and her husband went on a mission trip to Macedonia. Kevin texted with the news that he had been laid off. We were fourteen hours apart, my sister was about to leave for the airport and I just wanted to go home. Teary and in disbelief I grabbed a notebook and wrote down everything he said; my mind was scattered and I knew when we hung up I would forget all the things he said. Severance, amazing. Benefits continued, blessing. Call our financial advisor, good idea. Hiring coach provided, wonderful. But even in hearing this I still had many tears, a few sobs and a little panic.

Lesson One — Lean in and listen
Feeling a little unsettled, Kevin had been praying about his job for awhile, and he reminded me that the last word he had heard from God was to ‘Stay put. Stay on this path.’ Okay we did that, but now what? Kevin said he planned the next day to be a time of fasting; he would go into a state park with his bible and a notebook, walk and sit in the quiet and seek to hear from God. Of course — lean in and listen for God. I knew at that moment we would be okay because Kevin wasn’t going to go forward in his own strength or wisdom, though he has much of both, he was going to be still and lean not on his own understanding.

Lesson Two — Go visit your Father
I waited the next day for the fast to end and Kevin to call. I tried to not rush him through what he was saying but I was anxious to hear what God had said. What’s next? I was wondering. Where do we put our feet? What do we do now? I couldn’t wait to hear what God said.

And here’s what God spoke to Kevin’s heart, I’m glad you’re here spending the day with me.

Of course. The Lord was happy his son had come to spend time with him, to be near his Father; that Kevin knew who to go to before any decisions or directions were taken.

Though I hoped for a billboard with a map in the woods that day, what we got was far better; the reminder that sometimes God wants us to just come and visit. He wants to know we love him for him, not for what he delivers. Can you imagine if your kids never just snuggled up with you, climbed in your lap, or if they only called when they needed something from you? Once again, I felt a peace wash over me, God is with us, we’ll be okay. The what, when, where, why and how could wait. God had led us to this job six years ago, and now it was gone, but we didn’t feel abandoned. Confused maybe, but trusting still.

Lesson Three — Its okay to not understand
When we moved to Michigan from Indiana for this job, I didn’t really understand it. We had just launched our last one to college, alongside a few close friends. I had planned to enter the empty nest season with walks and wine on the porch with one of my best friends who lived around the corner. But alas it was not to be. Instead I would move 80 miles away to a very small, but adorable and historic, town. And as it turns out our time here has turned into one of the sweetest blessings of our lives.

Six years ago I said I don’t understand this move, it’s not what I imagined at this point of my life, but I trust it. I was sometimes lonely that first year, but I also had peace. And so it goes again — this is not what I expected at this point of our lives either, it’s not what I would choose, but I trust it.

I’m leaning in, listening, visiting my Father, trusting and peaceful as we enter this next unforeseen season. It’s not what I expected, but I do have peace and I still trust what’s next.

Momma, You’re Doing a Good Job

Momma bird 2015There’s a new momma in my midst and I’m so excited to be watching her closely, encouraging her along the way. This little bird created a home for her babies right outside my bathroom window; it’s been such a treat to keep an eye on her. I open the window each morning
s l o w l y,  as to not scare her, greeting her each time I see her, saying things like ~


“Good morning, momma, you’re doing a good job.”

“Hello sweet momma, you’re awesome.”
“Hi momma, your babies are beautiful.”
“Hi again momma, it’s just me, don’t be afraid.”
“Hey there momma, how brave you are!”
“Hi momma, you’re beautiful.”
“Hey momma, I see you sitting on those eggs, caring for your babies.”

Then before bed I tell her good night and  s l ow l y  crank the window shut. She has no idea what I’m saying or even that I care for her, but I talk to her nonetheless, care regardless, and watch her as she protects, feeds and raises future flyers.

baby birds 2015Recently a big storm was brewing, I kept wondering how I could protect her; the shrub is not full of big summer leaves just yet, leaving her wide open to the elements. The idea of big rain drops pelting down hard on her made my heart  hurt a little. I understood an umbrella would blow away and anything I did would just scare her anyway. (I really tried to think of ways to protect her!) My concern for her increased, though I knew she was created to withstand storms and such.

This morning I walked away after greeting her and suddenly wondered how many ways am I the momma bird to God? I wonder how often He greets me but I do not understand. I wonder how many times He sees storms coming, desires to protect me but knows that is not necessarily His job, how often He looks at me and tells me I’m brave, awesome, beautiful and doing a good job ~ but I just don’t understand the message. I’m considering how often I miss His encouraging words as I sit on my nest, watching over and taking care of the future flyers put in my charge, within (and now outside) of our nest.

If you’re a momma sitting on your nest and you’ve ever wondered if anyone notices you – know that someone does. If you take a pelting as you shield your little ones, know that God has His eye on you ~ I find strength in that. If you think you’re not enough, God says you are. The days you believe the voice that says that you are lacking in looks, know that your Father says, Hey my girl, you are beautiful. When we feel weak our Father whispers You are strong. Being a momma is tough stuff some days, joyful others, lonely occasionally, sad sometimes, fulfilling often. I believe my God sees me and speaks words to me that are above my understanding. This sweet little momma bird has me searching His word afresh, wondering what those words might be and has me listening a little more closely.

He Can Move the Mountains

In the course of our adoption journey, when I have been at the end of myself, with nothing left to give and seemingly nothing at the bottom to even scrape, God would give me this song ~

Everyone needs compassion
a love that never fails
let mercy fall on me…

~ and something within me would stir. When at church, I’d glance at our angry boy standing in the front row, right across the aisle from our pastor, and despite my anger, frustration, sadness or emptiness, I knew those words were true.

Savior, He can move the mountains
My God is mighty to save
He is mighty to save

I could feel the mountain inside of our boy’s heart and mind. It was a massive, seemingly immovable barricade. The weight of that mountain and it’s jagged cliffs were hurting him, and me, and the rest of our family. It was impeding forward movement.  Each time I heard those words I was reminded God could move that mountain, that He was mighty to save.

So take me him as you find me him
All my his fears and failures
Fill my his life again…

Those are the words I would sing.

Shine your light and let the whole world see
We’re singing for the glory of the risen King…

In my darkness I could sing for the glory of the risen King.

In October of 2012 my husband flew 1,500 miles with our boy, leaving him in a program that was to allow him time and space to mature and heal. 1,500 miles away. In a foreign country. On a mountain. It was the next thing that was presented to us in our journey. It was not what I had expected. It never occurred to me when we adopted him that we would send him away. But maybe, just maybe God knew He could trust us to make this hard, right choice. I don’t know that, but I wonder.

CMA ChurchMany months later when Kevin and I flew down for our first parent visit, our boy was still angry. The last day of our visit was a Sunday and we went to church with him. The church is on the campus of the academy; a simple but beautiful little church. The pews face a wall with a large window, and out that window is a stunning view of a very large mountain. As I stood next to our boy with his own mountain, the visual was not lost on me. An obscure verse we read on a screen recently while visiting a friend’s church in Denver  ~ which spoke to me about our boy ~ was now put up on the screen in this little church facing the mountain, while I sat next to our boy. “OK, God, I see you.” I thought. Then the worship team led us in “Mighty to Save”. My heart lurched and tears streamed down my face, I put my hand compassionately over our boy’s hand with a love I hoped would not fail him; he stood there rigidly. But I was at peace because I sensed God was once more affirming that He was in this whole thing.

Even with this perceived affirmation I wasn’t confident we would ever see this mountain move. But I also knew my Savior had the power to move it. I prayed through that song that God would take him ~ with all his fears and failures and fill his life.

When we returned home my heart was heavy. That first Sunday as I stood in our church I pictured our boy in his church so many miles away. My mind wandered to that mountain out the window and the one within his heart. Then our worship team led us in “Mighty to Save” and tears streamed, I was reminded once more that my God is mighty to save.

On March 22, 2015, after two years and five months, in which our guy   s l o w l y   completed the program, he stood next to me in our home church once more, no more than a few inches separating us.

I quickly had this little conversation with God as we stood to worship:

God,
I know you brought our boy home. I know it’s true because he’s standing next to me. But right now, right here, it would be really cool if our worship team led us in “Mighty to Save”.

Wait…sorry God, it seems I’m always asking you, “Please give me a sign so I know that it’s you.”  I don’t need another sign. I have it ~ the sign is life size and standing next to me. Only YOU could have moved the mountain within this boy. I am grateful. I do not need more of a sign than that.

I started thinking of God telling Moses “…this will be the sign to you that it is I that have sent you: when you have brought the people out of Egypt, you will worship God on this mountain.” Genesis 3:12

I was at truly satisfied and at peace.

And then our worship team launched into “Mighty to Save”. I felt my knees go weak and there was no stopping the floodgate of tears as my husband reached for my hand. How could God be so compassionate to me? I don’t deserve it, yet he takes me as he finds me, all my fears and failures and fills my life with the lyrics and timing of this song again and again. How Great is our God?! Oh yeah, we also sang a chorus of that at the end of Mighty to Save.

Thank you, God for your compassion and love that never fails. Thank you for your faithfulness and providence over these many years and in the years to come. Thank you for the healing you have done in this boy that you grafted into our family. May we shine your light and let the whole world see, we’re singing for the glory of the risen King!

(We’re on day 8 of the reunification and it’s going well. He has matured much. He actually wants to be here now. He finally trusts us. He’s letting us in. I’m not naive, I’m aware there are likely to be challenges along the way, but with the mountain moved, the journey likely won’t be on such rugged terrain.)

Mighty to Save by Laura Story
How Great is our God by