Category Archives: quotes

rejoice!

o come, o come Emmanuel, and ransom captive israel, that mourns in lonely exile here until the son of God appear.

rejoice! rejoice! Emmanuel shall come to thee, o israel.

o come, thou rod of jesse, free thine own from satan’s tyranny; from depths of hell thy people save, and give them victory o’er the grave.

o come, thou dayspring, come and cheer our spirits with thine advent here; disperse the gloomy clouds of night, and death’s dark shadows put to flight.

o come, thou key of david, come and open wide out heavenly home; make safe they way that leads on nigh, and close the path to misery.

o come, desire of nations, bind in one the hearts of all mankind; bid thou our sad divisions cease, and be thyself our King of Peace.

rejoice! rejoice! Emmanuel shall come to thee, o israel.

what a holiday yesterday was! christmas eve here in southwest oklahoma was a snowed-in one, with power outages and the use of quite a few flashlights. :) christmas day was filled with pilfering through stocking stuffers, plugging in numerous AA batteries into my nieces’ new toys, and cooking a delicious dinner with help from my sister and sister-in-law. despite the blizzard and the sketchy road conditions brought with it, both my brother and sister’s families were able to make it down to the country to celebrate together. we, as a family, have more than we could ever ask for: love and laughter, a mother whose fight with cancer this winter has been nothing but a blessed one, and God with us. He is Emmanuel, the Word made flesh. prophecy foretold His arrival, and yet He was the Messiah few expected or recognized. may we celebrate each day how You came and walked in our skin.

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pricetags & provision.

twelve days into may and i haven’t the least entertaining things to write! the approach of finals next week, beginning my summer job, and the birth of my fourth niece, ari jade, in a month or so are leaving me in a big ole state of anticipation – so much that has to get done in the here and now, and even more events are waiting around the corner. very exciting, to say the least. :)
i’ve been thinking a great deal about stewardship lately, with a discussion on economics in my biblical ethics course, writing a research paper for the class about megachurches, and thinking long and hard about the conscientiousness i want to embody in finances throughout my lifetime. during one such discussion in class, my professor announced several things which captured my attention. first, he quoted barbara brown taylor, an author: “the opposite of being rich isn’t being poor. the opposite of being rich is being free.” oh dannnng. a few minutes later, this came from his own repertoire: “stewardship carries the pricetag of viewing everything as a gift.
i think i pulled my toes back under my desk a bit after that one. :)
what am i doing to show Him that i am grateful for His provision and that i can be entrusted with more of it in the future? if you know me well at all, you know my coupon organizer and check register are two items i keep a close eye on. i’m working hard toward reaching my first $1,000 in savings by the end of the month, and i have always been surrounded by incredible examples of frugality and responsibility in my family. but isn’t there more that i can do than just create a comfortable life for myself?

our textbook for biblical ethics, kingdom ethics, explores matthew 6:19 and states that the “treasure up treasures” imagery connotes hoarding of pride, greed, and stinginess. going on to verse 21, it becomes clear that, when we invest our possessions generously in God’s reign of justice and mercy, we’ll find that our hearts are invested there as well. and that, my friends, is where i want my heart to be found on the very last day.
“see if I will not throw open the floodgates of Heaven and pour out so much blessing that you will not have room enough for it.” // malachi 3:10

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the unrelieved quest.

from today’s passage in oswald chambers’ my utmost for His highest:

feed My sheep. // john 21:17
this is love in the making. the love of God is tin-made, it is God’s nature. when we receive the Holy Spirit, He unites us with God so that His love is manifested in us. when the soul is united to God by the indwelling Holy Spirit, that is not the end; the end is that we may be one with the Father as Jesus was. what kind of oneness had Jesus Christ with the Father? such a oneness that the Father sent Him down here to be spent for us, and He says – “as the Father hath sent Me, even so send I you.”
peter realizes now with the revelation of the Lord’s hurting question that he does love Him; then comes the point – “spend it out.” don’t testify how much you love Me, don’t profess about the marvellous revelation you have had, but – “feed My sheep.” and Jesus has some extraordinarily funny sheep, some bedraggled, dirty sheep, some awkward, butting sheep, some sheep that have gone astray! it is impossible to weary God’s love, and it is impossible to weary that love in me if it springs from the one center. the love of God pays no attention to the distinctions made by natural individuality. if i love my Lord i have no business to be guided by natural temperament; i have to feed His sheep. there is no relief and no release from this commission. beware of counterfeiting the love of God by working along the line of natural human sympathy, because that will end in blaspheming the love of God.

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someday.

it is hard to believe how quickly a year can pass, how four seasons can complete their cycle in what seems like a flash. it has been a year since brady passed away, a precious little boy who words cannot do justice. my first love’s baby cousin touched a multitude more than i can ever hope to touch, and on february 3rd – his sixth birthday – he was released from the pain and obstacles which had plagued him during his short time here. i attended his memorial service on my birthday last year, which i have often described as the most horrific and most precious day of my life. i dearly wish i could detail it much further than that, but his legacy really speaks the loudest. hundreds of friends, family members, nurses and doctors, even news anchors, were present to celebrate brady. the following night i posted this note, pleading for prayer for this wonderful family i came to love. tonight my plea is the same.

oh great God, be small enough to hear us now.
my heart has never ached so uncontrollably for another’s anguish, and i’m astonished at how unaware i once was of what it means to mourn with those who mourn.
it isn’t right to hear a mother and father wail for their child.
it isn’t right for this beautiful, brave woman to acknowledge my birthday on the very day she’s burying her youngest son.
yesterday was amazing, precious, and devestating.
i witnessed how one quiet but mighty soul touched thousands of individuals – something few of us will ever accomplish, but a feat brady conquered within six years.
i rejoiced for a boy who i only had the chance to be in the presence of for a handful of occasions, for a man among children who required only one brief encounter to make you fall in love with him.
i smiled at the thought of all the foods he is finally getting to taste, all of the songs and laughter he is finally getting to hear, all of the races he is finally getting to win.
and i continue to weep for the matchless family that had to give him up to Heaven.
they are all i see when i close my eyes at night. this heavy, horrible feeling consumes my chest when i even begin to think about it. i always thought there came a time when one was all cried out.
i now know that is only an awful myth.
i beg, i plead with you to pray for this group of people i love. if i could only ask you one thing for the rest of time, this would be it. pray for peace to be imparted tonight. pray for joy to show its face soon. pray for comfort to surround ripped and torn hearts. but i think this beautiful boy would also beg you to celebrate, celebrate all of the tiny things we so constantly fail to give a second glance. to celebrate the balloons and flowers he cherished in his tender hands, celebrate life and love itself.
the Father labored and toiled for six days to bless and cultivate everything that is around us, and rested when He saw His work was good.
brady labored and toiled for six years to the very day, blessing and cultivating everything that is around us. it was good. and he is finally resting.
someday all that’s crazy, all that’s unexplained will be beautiful, beautiful. someday all that’s hazy through a clouded glass will be clear at last. and sometimes we’re just waiting for someday. we’re just waiting.
now we see things imperfectly as in a cloudy mirror, but then we will see everything with perfect clarity. all that i know now is partial and incomplete, but then i will know everything completely… // 1 corinthians 13:12

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you’re the God of this city.

today at church we sang one of my absolute favorite songs, God of this city. it was all i could do to keep from letting the happy tears flow [though they definitely let loose later in the message – invasions has been an incredible series!] as i thought of so many places the lyrics remind me of – my hometown of mountain view, my college abode in shawnee, the edmond/oklahoma city communities i’ve invested in these last two years, and istanbul. this city captured my heart in just two short weeks back in 2005. my vision is there, my dreams are with the turks, and a little piece of me remained there as our plane took off of the soil. as i copy and paste these lyrics, let me also leave with you one of my favorite photographs from that trip. my former youth minister’s wife peeked her camera around the corner of this tiny street in an instanbul neighborhood and snapped a precious piece of time as we prayerwalked. He is the God of this city, and such bigger things than we can envision are already in preparation – for istanbul, for oklahoma city, for your hometown and mine. let’s join in and be a part of what He’s doing.

You’re the God of this city
You’re the King of these people
You’re the Lord of this nation
You are
You’re the Light in this darkness
You’re the Hope to the hopeless
You’re the Peace to the restless
You are
there is no one like our God
there is no one like our God
for greater things have yet to come
and greater things are still to be done in this city
greater things are still to come
and greater things are still to be done in this city

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a rainbow in the cloud.

from today’s passage in oswald chambers’ my utmost for His highest:

i set My rainbow in the cloud; and it shall be for the sign of the covenant between Me and the earth. // genesis 9:13

it is the will of God that human beings should get into a right-standing relationship with Him, and His covenants are designed for this purpose. why doesn’t God save me? He has accomplished and provided for my salvation, but i have not yet entered into a relationship with Him. why doesn’t God do everything we ask? He has done it. the point is – will i step into that covenant relationship? all the great blessings of God are finished and complete, but they are not mine until i enter into a relationship with Him on the basis of His covenant.
waiting for God to act is fleshly unbelief. it means that i have no faith in Him. i wait for Him to do something in me so that i may trust in that. but God won’t do it, because that is not the basis of the God-and-man relationship. man must go beyond the physical body and feelings in his covenant with God, just as God goes beyond Himself in reaching out with His covenant to man. it is a question of faith in God – a very rare thing. we only have faith in our feelings. i don’t believe God until He puts something tangible in my hand, so that i know i have it. then i say, “now i believe.” there is no faith exhibited in that. God says, “look to me, and be saved…” [isaiah 45:22]
when i have really transacted business with God on the basis of His covenant, letting everything else go, there is no sense of personal achievement – no human ingredient in it at all. instead, there is a complete overwhelming sense of being brought into union with God, and my life is transformed and radiates peace and joy.

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coverage.

lookin’ for some awe-inspiring stuff to light your fire this week? then have i got a list for you! somewhere in the middle of tests about the renaissance, western art, and the living God – not to mention a few papers about gothic architecture and the canterbury tales – i have come across some goodies which have provided such a blessed break-up of the mundane. and what kind of southern girl would i be if i didn’t spread the love around?

-projects:
soles4souls, a charity based in nashville, is currently holding a challenge to send 50,000 pairs of shoes in 50 days to bless those who desperately need shoes around the world. many of the recipients of these gifts have never experienced having such a simple yet vital possession. over 300 million people worldwide are forced to walk in unsafe and potentially life-threatening conditions because they lack this basic necessity. donating just $5 to this cause will provide two people overseas with a pair of shoes.as of this post, there are 42 days left in the challenge. 4,800 shoes have already been donated, and you could be a part of this with such a small sacrifice. as little as $5 can change so much – won’t you be a part of this with me?

-quotes:[these are words that have come to me at just the right moments, during this week and the past few. these may not speak to any particular situation you’re experiencing, but i can’t help but share them anyway!]

“single ladies…no matter what you’ve been through…you are NOT damaged goods! God STILL has a plan for your life…and you are SO WORTH THE PURSUIT of a man who is willing to fight to win your heart…do NOT SETTLE for a boy who wants to use you, wait for a man who will esteem you!” // perry noble

“you have a powerful story, and somewhere along the way you believed a lie that you have to pay for the sins of your past. the shame that you carry for the “bad” things you have done and the burden of the sin of your past are not from God. Jesus to paid for those sins with a very high price, which more than covers your sin no matter how bad you think it might be. you holding onto shame from your past gives power to the struggle and hinders the power of what Christ has done for you. you have all authority over the past and your pain and your shame. shame is not from God. He gives you grace and grace in abundance. His grace is sufficient for you.
you have a powerful story, and God wants to use the very specific things you have done to bring Him glory. He wants to use the things you have done to set people free from the very same things you struggled with. this is a part of a process that God has you on, and that process is different for everyone. some people need prayer of deliverance, some people need to make restitution, some people need to forgive themselves. it’s very different for everyone.” //
lori boucher

go here to read a quote by marianne williamson, which my beautiful suitemate and best friend has posted in our bathroom to remind each of us they our “playing small does not serve the world.” i hope you, too, claim this truth as your own!

-blog posts: [take note of a few postings i have adored this week so far.]
elohim my friend addison is such a beautiful person and writer. the words you’ll read here expose just a tiny portion of that!
the ties that bind – rachel has articulated everything i have felt this past year and of what i need to let go of. my own “soul tie” has rendered me paralyzed for far too long. traveling light sounds like such a good idea today. =)

-books:[i know, the pleasure of reading sure seems like a distant memory most days for us. but just in case the free time to enjoy a book shows up again soon, here are a few titles that have rocked my world lately.]


living the sermon on the mount – this book, by glen stassen, was assigned in my life of Christ class. though a hard read at times, it is a powerful examination of Jesus’ words that were meant to transform our lives.
the green book – i wish i was a hippie. if you read this book, you’ll become one. just kidding – but you really will learn of some practical ways to leave a better mark on the world!
walking on water – it’s been awhile since i last read this book, but it is something i feel i must promote regardless. madeline l’engle shares gorgeous reflections of faith’s influence on life and art. keep a pen or highlighter handy as you Linkread through this one! [p.s. my favorite singer, nichole nordeman, wrote the forward for this book’s latest printing!]

-music:
i’m not gonna lie, taylor swift’s new album fearless has been ringing in my head since it’s release last week. as i was sitting in my dorm’s hall lobby several days back, i heard “love story” being sung at the top of a group of girls’ lungs. i laughed at the time, only because i knew i had done the same thing in my own car not a few hours before. =)

[for links to all of these titles, please click on their pictures in the widget carousel on the left side of the screen!]

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