Chapel Prayer

I went to college at Mizzou. That seems like the appropriate thing to do for a Missouri Girl. Back in the 80’s MU was known as a party campus to the kids in my high school. As a young lover of Jesus, my motivation to go there was definitely not to party, I wanted to be a light and witness to my generation.

A.P. Green Chapel

One thing I loved about the campus at Mizzou was the A.P. Green Chapel, next to Memorial Union. It was like a small candle flickering light on a campus with so much darkness in it. I would go there frequently to pray and read my Bible. It was in that chapel during one of my times of prayer that I wrote this poem.

Chapel Prayer 

Let me see the world as You see it.
With the compassion of the Cross
That's a heart of Love that breaks
For the dying of the lost.
Let me cry as You cried and
Break me as You were broke
Make my heart like Your heart
And let me wear Your yoke.

Let me be as You are Full of love and kind,
Gentle and compassionate,
Sweet as the New Wine.

Let me see the world as You see it,
Through the eyes of the cross.
Willing to give my all for You
So others won't be lost.
(originally written January 21,1990)
Inside the Chapel

This morning as I started my time in prayer memories of that chapel and a young, wholly devoted heart that I had started to flow through my mind. I know that at that time if God would have told me to pack up my bags and head to the corners of the earth, I would have. I wanted to do whatever He wanted no matter what the cost. Over 30 years have went by since I sat in that chapel writing those words. I’ve had my times of living a life for God that I felt like I was red hot on fire and then lukewarm since then. I have often wondered If I heard God say, ” Pack up everything and go,” would I be willing to obey like my younger heart would have? Then I thought of the poem above that my younger heart wrote during a time of prayer.

Things haven’t really changed much since that day. The world I live in is still dark and full of death and destruction. Just this week two shootings have occurred in my country for no real reason except evil in the hearts of mankind. However, I know the remedy, Jesus. It seems like all that I can do is like a tiny band aid on a gaping wound.

In Isaiah 6 the prophet Isaiah saw a vision of the Lord. His way of going about life was wrecked by what He saw. He saw a God who was so holy, glorious, and awesome in power, that all he could think of is how sinfully human he was. But he also heard the voice of God asking, “Who will go for Us?” Sitting there realizing how unqualified he was he replied, “Here am I. Send me!” Sitting in the presence of Jesus has that effect on a person. Seeing what Isaiah saw, a God who is so much bigger than us and yet so loving and so kind, I also can hear His voice calling to me. “Who will go for Us?” Although I have no idea what that will mean for me, may my heart say as Isaiah’s did, “Here am I. Send me!”

As it usually does during my times of contemplation, I come across a song that stirs within me. The lyrics of this song are so powerful. May it be my prayer. May it be the prayer of all of us.

God has given us so much to be thankful for this season. Let us purpose in our hearts to not only give thanks, but give ourselves to Him fully! Taking the remedy to our brokenness to the world around us! Come Lord Jesus!

“If it’s bandaging the broken
Or washing filthy feet
Here I am, Lord, send me
If it’s loving one another
Even when we don’t agree
Here I am, Lord, send me
If I’m poor or if I’m wealthy I’ll serve You just the same
Here I am, Lord, send me
On the mountain or the valley
I will choose to praise
Here I am, Lord, send me
If I’m known by how I love
Let my life reflect how much I love You I love You
And before You even ask
Oh, my answer will be yes ‘
cause I love You I love You
If the truth cuts like an arrow
I will say it anyway
‘Cause here I am, Lord, send me
And if it’s means that they’ll reject me Lord, I will still obey
‘Cause here I am, Lord, send me
And if I’m known by how I love
Let my life reflect how much I love You I love You
And before You even ask Oh, my answer will be yes
’cause I love You Oh, I love You
When I’m standing in Your glory
I’ll be glad I chose to say
“Here I am, Lord, send me”
“Well done, good and faithful” I live to hear You say
Here I am, Lord, send me”

“Send Me” – Bethel Music

WOW Devotion- 1 Corinthians 12:31-13:13

I have been writing weekly devotions for a local ministry, Women on Wednesdays.

https://www.wowjcmo.com

Here is the latest written about how a heart that is wholly devoted to God loves:

Click on Link Below

https://mailchi.mp/a47ce29726bb/wow-devotion-for-our-scripture-reading-romans-5853097?fbclid=IwAR2PhSkja0bJwsk8YsYPm90d_1YwG_7uASFcKLlylt7HoA6N8lqRmvg6HEM

Hope that Makes Me Bold

“Therefore since we have such a hope, we are very bold.” 2 Corinthians 3:12

Our God is soooo good! I have been contemplating the goodness of God lately. Something that in my 40 years of walking with Him I have never done. I’m not sure why not, but here we are… I have been awed by a definition I heard of love in a class I am taking, “Living Life Live” at WOW- Women on Wednesday. “Love always wants the very best, the most excellent, and the most profitable for another to benefit them for their own sake.” In other words since God is love, He wants the most excellent, the most profitable, the most beneficial for me. Mind blown. Especially if for some reason you have lived your life with a distorted image of God, looking at Him as a taskmaster of sorts. One who demands work from us in exchange for His blessing that He occasionally doles out to keep us plodding along like a donkey following a carrot on a stick so it will pull a cart. Not so with our Loving Heavenly Father who has set His affections on us and gives so many rich gifts of love, joy, and peace to the heart who is open to receive.

This leads me to the verse above: “We have such a hope…” hope- the confident expectation of Good. Our God is the God of Hope- when we trust Him and believe Him He pours out a confident expectation of GOOD- Hope because all His ways are GOOD toward us, EVERY single one! He never acts as the false gods of ancient times did. They were known for manipulating their subjects, punishing harshly for any misstep or act that displeased them. Their ways were not able to be known because they simply cared only for themselves.

Our God is good! And He is our hope, confident expectation of Good, because Good is the essence of who He is. This goodness makes us “bold”- free from timidity, confident, brave! We are told in the word we can approach God boldly because of what Jesus did for us on the cross. We can be confident of His heart towards us, because it is filled with His great love. And Our God is always good!

I’ve been asking the Holy Spirit to fill me with Boldness the past few months: Boldness to obey God fully, boldness to say whatever He places in my spirit to say, boldness to do whatever He asks.

Yesterday I was in a break out session at the Inspire Women’s Retreat and this verse was one of a section of scriptures being discussed. It stood out in my heart as I heard it read: God’s hope- my understanding of just how GOOD He is and expectation of that GOODNESS to be poured out in my life moves me. It makes me free, free from timidity and fear. It makes me BOLD! It makes me willing to go wherever God leads me, to do whatever He asks. Because I am living a life close to Him, basking in His goodness. I am anticipating with hope His love has gone before me, goes behind me, and is in me. It makes me unable to fail! That Hope truly does make me bold!

He is Good!

Take Up Your Cross

“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 ‭10:38-39‬ ‭NIV‬‬

The cross was well known in Jesus’ day. Not as a decoration we hang on the wall of our home or set upon the top of a church steeple, but an instrument of execution and torture used by the Romans. It was used to punish the most hardened criminals. Jesus had not yet been to the cross when these words were spoken, but it was understood that a prisoner sentenced to death must first carry their own cross to their site of execution. It was a way of showing total submission to the ruling authority, Rome.

Jesus speaks of His followers being willing to follow Him in His act of total submission, not to Rome because at any time in His own execution He could have called a legion of angels to rescue Him from the cross, but to God and God’s will. Jesus knew what it would cost for Him to fulfill His purpose for which He came, a humiliating and horrendous death. He did so for the “joy set before Him”- you and me.

He requires no less in wholehearted devotion and commitment from us. All we are, submitted to God and God’s will- For all He is Life, Joy, Peace, wholeness. That is a life lived “taking up our cross and following Him”. Living in submission to Jesus and His will for us. With the promise that if we “die with Him (spiritually) we shall surely live with Him and reign. (2 Timothy 2:11-12).

The Pharisees and ME

“Going on from that place, he went into their synagogue, and a man with a shriveled hand was there. Looking for a reason to bring charges against Jesus, they asked him, “Is it lawful to heal on the Sabbath?” He said to them, “If any of you has a sheep and it falls into a pit on the Sabbath, will you not take hold of it and lift it out? How much more valuable is a person than a sheep! Therefore it is lawful to do good on the Sabbath.” Then he said to the man, “Stretch out your hand.” So he stretched it out and it was completely restored, just as sound as the other.”

Matthew‬ ‭12:9-13‬ ‭NIV‬‬

It amazes me the heart of the Pharisees, the Jewish leaders of Jesus time. First of all, they were looking for a reason to arrest Jesus so they could stop Him. He didn’t fit their religious mode. They could see the miracles Jesus did, but did they really see? In this miracle they watched a man’s hand that was “shriveled” be “completely restored, just as sound as the other.” I can’t imagine watching in an instant a hand that was obviously messed up restored right before my eyes. But what blows me away even more is how the Pharisees didn’t stand there with their mouths agape saying “WOW!!!” Instead, they watched, they saw, and they “plotted how they might kill Jesus”. That is unbelief!!

Now before I get all self-righteous saying, “I would NEVER do that!” The question that I am dwelling on today is “Would I NEVER do that?” Would I NEVER see the hand of God in circumstances around me and still refuse to believe? Would I NEVER try to discredit God’s miraculous in my own life?

Here’s what the Pharisees and me have in common: the desire to be in charge/ rule me.

They wanted control of their lives and the religious life of the Jews and themselves. All too often I want control of my life, following my own ways, my own opinions, my own desires- not fully obey. The only way I can do that is to discredit Jesus, not believe. Because a follower of Jesus must see what He has done, believe He is King of Kings and Lord of Lords, and follow Him whole heartedly. Not reason away His lordship of our lives and seek to figure out ways to “get around” obedience. The Pharisees tried to reason away Jesus so they could remain in control over their lives.

God grant me to stay close to You, obedient, always believing, submitted to You and Your will!