Franklin Five

Let us not love with words or tongue but with actions and in truth. 1 John 3:18

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Thinking of Good Friday

Where would we be without Your love?
We'd still be lost in darkness.
Where would we be without Your cross?
It made a way to save us.
O, Your love! O, your love!

We couldn't escape the sin and shame that kept us bound.
We couldn't break through, we couldn't reach You.
So You reached down.

Safe in the arms of Your embrace
breathing in Your freedom.
Lifting a song of highest praise,
breathing out your anthem, O, Your love!

Where would we be without Your love?
We'd still be lost in darkness.
Where would we be without your cross?
It made a way to save us.
O, Your love! O, Your love!

words by Matt Redman

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Ice Crystals

Sometimes an ordinary occurrence passes without recognition of what it truly is intended to be: a message of love from the Spirit of God.  But at those special times when our hearts are longing for the Spirit's whisper, we catch it like a delicate snowflake landing on our tongue.  It's brief, but it can leave a lasting impression, one that you don't want to forget.

Today is the first day of Spring.  It is 20 degrees (Fahrenheit, I should add). As I struggled to help my youngest child into her snowsuit, mittens, boots, and hat for our walk to school this morning, my heart felt as cold as the frozen ground outside my front door. We recently returned from the land flowing with milk and honey, Nashville (I exaggerate for effect), and I have been working through some disappointment of realizing our move back home is not happening as soon as I would like.

On the way to school, I noticed a girl ahead of us holding a chunk of ice.  She lifted it up above her head and peered through the ice noticing the way the sun's rays were captured in the crystals.  I watched and smiled at her discovery, at her delight in the way something so ordinary and dull could be transformed into something magical.  It was then that I heard Him ask, "How are you viewing your life, Jo?" I've been discouraged and discontent.  I've been fighting resentment and frustration, yet when I hold my life up to His radiance, His glory shines through.  He makes the ordinary and mundane shine and shimmer in His light. He even can take something cold, hard, and void of warmth and make it beautiful.

Today I'm holding onto this truth, this idea of "uncomfortable grace". A guest speaker at our church spoke on this a few weeks ago, and his message has been resonating in my mind ever since.  He said sometimes God takes us to places we don't want to go to accomplish something in our lives that we could not accomplish on our own.

Uncomfortable grace...God's way of bringing blessings through suffering, of teaching, molding, and shaping us through difficult circumstances.  His way of taking our ordinary lives, shining His light in us, and creating something beautiful.