Worship Wednesdays

Peace

Isn’t it funny how small the world is in this strange era of social media and advanced technology. This week I discovered a random connection that stretched from USA to our wee country Norn Iron right out to India. I find it so bizarre that I’ve met people or seen them in the street and felt that I know them even though I’ve only ever encountered them on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram! It’s hard to know whether to stop for a chat about their kids, dog or fabulous decor or if it’s best to pretend to be strangers in case they think I’m mad!

Last year I started following an awesome Aussie chick on Instagram – turns out I used to go to the same church as her husband in Belfast. (What a small world eh?!) She shares her life as a mother, wife and Christ follower in such a natural and open way – so today I’m going to let her beautiful post and video about the new Hillsongs Young & Free song do the talking…

 

You will stay true
Even in the chaos
Your Word remains truth
Even when my mind wreaks havoc
I will be still for I’ve known all along
My Jehovah Shalom

 

 

 

Thoughts & Ponderings

Count Your Blessings

For the last week and a half I’ve been participating in Christian Aid’s Count Your Blessings Lent challenge. Here’s their little blurb:

Lent is a time for taking stock and reflecting. People often challenge themselves to give things up for Lent, but this year we’d like to take up the habit of gratitude for the ways in which we’re blessed.
Each day we’ll share a challenge, something to take a photo of and share on your Instagram feed, or an invitation to reflect and hear the stories of our sisters and brothers in Kenya and Nigeria.

Today we’ve been challenged to reflect on the journey so far. I have to say it’s been an eye opener – some days I find myself having a melt down over things that I’d class as “first world struggles” and then I look to the challenge for the day and I wind my neck in! It’s so important to find a little perspective in order to realise how blessed we are to have the provisions and freedoms that so many others do without.

It’s quite fitting that we had visitors at our church this morning from the SONshine Club Kenya Project who shared with us the wonderful projects they’ve set up and how they spend the money they raise. The kids were totally fascinated by a demonstration on how a new water filter can really change lives and I have to admit it has really given me an urge to step up and do more for people in need that simply don’t have the basic supplies that we take for granted.

But probably more importantly this challenge has made me realise how in every day there is something to be thankful for – even when some days are harder than others. Just as I was typing this post my big blue eyed princess started belting out this wee tune – she’s been singing it a lot lately but the lyrics have only just sunk in to my brain and made me realise just how special those words are…

If I were a butterfly
I’d thank you Lord for giving me wings
If I were a robin in a tree
I’d thank you Lord that I could sing
If I were a fish in the sea
I’d wiggle my tail and I’d giggle with glee
But I just thank you Father for making me, me
For you gave me a heart and you gave me a smile
You gave me Jesus and you made me your child
And I just thank you Father for making me, me. 

There is always something to be thankful for – we just have to be willing to find it!

“Be cheerful no matter what; pray all the time; thank God no matter what happens. This is the way God wants you who belong to Christ Jesus to live.”
‭‭1 Thessalonians‬ ‭5:16-18 (THE MSG)

 

Worship Wednesdays

Lean Back

I wanted to share this Worship Wednesday track early this morning – I have just had it blasting in the car on the way to work and it has totally set me up for the day! It was shared with me just yesterday and I can’t get it out of my head!

It makes me think of how when we get home in the evenings and get up on the sofa with our girls they lean back and cuddle into mummy and daddy knowing that whatever has happened in the day they’re safe and loved. That’s how we should feel knowing we’re safe in the arms of our constant friend…

I will lean back in the loving arms
Of a beautiful Father
Breathe deep and know that He is good
He’s a love like no other

So take ten minutes, lean back and let it prepare you for your day ahead surrounded by his sustaining love. And if it touches you then please share it with others and give them the opportunity to be blessed by it too!

 

Worship Wednesdays

Love has a Name

I’m going to keep it simple today… it’s Valentines Day and I’m sure you’ve seen hundreds of gushing posts about love and all the gifts that have been received. Don’t get me wrong I think it’s cute and lovely to see people expressing their love but let’s remember…

“We love because he first loved us.”
‭‭1 John‬ ‭4:19‬ ‭NIV‬ 

So today’s Worship Wednesday speaks for itself – it’s all about LOVE and love has a name…

Worship Wednesdays

Fighter

When I look around me every day I see people fighting their way through the challenges of life. For those who know the Lord as their Constant Friend it can be truly inspiring to watch as they trust and find courage in him.

We’ve been talking a lot at church lately about how we can be fishers of men and build the kingdom for his glory but we don’t necessarily have to be in a happy place on the mountain top to win hearts for the Lord. When we face hardships or troubles people are watching us to see how we react and often the greatest testimonies come from those who have come through trials or tribulations. It’s not always easy to stay strong but the Lord commands us to trust in him as he will be with us every step of the way…

“Haven’t I commanded you? Strength! Courage! Don’t be timid; don’t get discouraged. God, your God, is with you every step you take.” Joshua 1:9 (THE MSG)

For today’s Worship Wednesday I want to share a lovely song by Jamie Grace with truly inspirational lyrics. Imagine being one of the people in her story…

When he gets down on his knees, he finds
The courage to believe
He’s a fighter, he’s a fighter
Who inspires me

Wouldn’t it be amazing if our fight inspired someone else and encouraged someone to trust the Lord on their journey through life?

I want to challenge myself and you this week – if you’re up for it? When faced with difficult situations  – no matter how big or small the issue – let’s remember Joshua 1:9 and get on our knees and trust in him.

Let’s be a fighter – you never know who is watching and who we might inspire and encourage?

Little life snippets, Seasons

Bedtime Progress

When I was pregnant with our first born, the ladies at our church prayed for a healthy wee sleeper – and that she was! E.E. (as her sister now calls her and it matches her initials so I quite like it) slept through the night from two weeks old and even loved snoozing throughout the day. But every night since we moved her out of her cot one of us has had to stay by her side until she dozes off.

This weekend we turned a corner and at just under 5 years and 11 months she is now putting herself to bed at night – unaccompanied! Some people might think we’re mad doing it all those years and don’t get me wrong it has been tough at times but it was all done with love – a 1Corinthians 13 love – we’ve been patient, kind, we never gave up as we were always hopeful that this day would come in HER time so we endured it all.

Yes it was trying and tiring especially when little A.J. arrived and there was no longer a “night off” bedtime duty. But reflecting back E.E. knew by our dedication to her needs that she is loved and those little bed time discussions and cuddles have been so precious – those I will miss!!

So if you’re in a season, whether you’re a parent or not, that seems like it will go on forever, hang in there and just keep focusing on that big L word… LOVE – through it we can achieve so much!

Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged. It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance. Prophecy and speaking in unknown languages and special knowledge will become useless. But love will last forever!

‭‭1 Corinthians‬ ‭13:4-8‬ ‭NLT‬‬