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wife. mom. adjunct professor. we homeschool. i'm a little bit OCD. i love math. bright colors and geometric designs make me drool. we live with a medical rarity, and Jesus saved his life. through that, Jesus is changing us. The american dream and status quo is overrated...and sometimes just plain wrong. our lives, our family, our careers, our faith are all now filtered through a new lens-- thank you Jesus. welcome to our crazy. feel free to take some of it with you, we have plenty to go around.
It's not the load that breaks you down; it's the way you carry it.
-- Lena Horne

The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.-- Jesus Christ

Sunday, October 2, 2011

i can't sing. but i do.

I have a terrible singing voice. Terrible, really.  In children's choir, many moons ago, I would always try my best to sing my heart out and be assigned a no avail.  So, while I don't sing solo for any one's ears to hear, I've been known to belt a tune or two when I'm in the car or at home or whatever...and some songs, you can't sing passively, even if you have the worst voice imaginable.  I'm talking like Happy Feet quality here-- imagine:
Go ahead and skip to about 1:45 if you are time crunched...(I can't embed the video, it won't let me)

So, now that you know how talented my singing voice is, imagine me belting something out.  It isn't beautiful to the ears, by any means.

But I've been in love with a song for I downloaded the album on itunes...and you have to hear the song (if you haven't already...and let me say this, the entire album is fantastic, so go right ahead....purchase it).  But first, you have to read the lyrics....spliced with my commentary/this post.

Yes, I said you have to.  I'm bossy.  I once read, "I'm not bossy, I just know what you should be doing."  So, yeah.

Your Great Name; Natalie Grant 
Lost are saved; find their way; at the sound of Your great name
           Jesus.  I mean, really-- we are rescued by Him...We are given direction through Him...
All condemned; feel no shame, at the sound of Your great name
            There is no condemnation for those in Christ Jesus.  Even those who don't know Him, any lack of worth you feel or condemnation you feel...or whatever...that isn't the way Jesus looks upon us-- that is the way some of us, as humans-- imperfect, calloused, ugly and rude, and even sometimes inhumane, as well as hypocritical-- that is the way some PEOPLE who claim to know Christ treat others who seem to not know Him.  But that is NOT how Christ looks upon us.  He loves us...OH, how He loves us.  Some people, and certainly the devil, would have us think that we are too unloveable or whatever, but we aren't.  We aren't worthy of the love of Christ, but He looks upon us with unfathomable love.  There is no condemnation for those in Christ.  He loves us, each of us, all of us.  Without Him, we are all condemned to die, but in Him, we are freely forgiven.
Every fear; has no place; at the sound of Your great name
           Jesus saw what was coming before it got here-- no matter how big the problem, no matter how scary the circumstance, there is no fear in Christ...The name of Jesus can light the darkest of times.  I know.
The enemy; he has to leave; at the sound of Your great name
            I think this is my most favorite line of the song.  The enemy- he HAS to leave.  There is no place for doubts and fears and insecurities in my life, in your life.  If we are in Christ, we are victors.  The devil has no place and no hold on us, and I will not be submissive to the negative thoughts, behaviors, attitudes he sends my way-- because at the sound of the Name of Jesus, the devil is as weak as Christ is strong.

Jesus, Worthy is the Lamb that was slain for us, Son of God and Man
You are high and lifted up; and all the world will praise Your great name
    Christ is worthy of my praise.  He has given more for me than I can ever give back to Him.  He is worthy of our praises, and I will write those praises, I will struggle daily to live a life of praise, and I will squawk them out of my sandpaper voice as loud as I can (but I will be polite in doing so around others.  I think Christ has a little bit more mercy upon hideous voices than our human ears do. :) )

All the weak; find their strength; at the sound of Your great name
   True. True. I know it.  I don't know how in the heck else we would still be standing after the past two years if it weren't for the supernatural strength we were given, and there is no explanation for the ability for us to still be standing, in tact, other than the grace of Jesus.
Hungry souls; receive grace; at the sound of Your great name
       People all over the world are searching, are in need, and Jesus can meet those needs, through His people, and through His grace.  Again, I know.
The fatherless; they find their rest; at the sound of Your great name
        This line is difficult for me.  It's an easy line to sing over for many of us-- many of us aren't fatherless; my dad is still living, I see him or talk to him regularly.   He helped Brandon put a new gate on our back fence recently, and I know if I have a question about that kind of stuff, or about my car, or whatever, I can call him and he can help me figure it out.  My kids can sit in his lap and read books with him, they know who he is, and they love him.  But some of us are fatherless, maybe in different ways.  I think of orphans, or kids in foster care, and how we can be used to show them literal fathers through adoption, and that is totally a way for Christ to become their eternal Father-- we can be the vessel He uses for that.  I also think of my husband, and the early loss of his father a few years ago.  He had no idea he would find himself in that position so young.  It isn't easy, even still.  There are days that are difficult.  There are days my heart breaks because my incredible father in law will never be a part of our lives on earth again.  My husband will not get to hunt with him again, and my boys will not get to hunt with him ever.  Sawyer probably won't remember him, and Ridge never even got to meet him. There is no explanation, and there is so much humanity that screams, why??? why did that happen?  I won't ever understand.   There is no way to fill that absence, but there is a Jesus who loves us through it.  We survive, because we have someone to fall to, someone who loves us through it, walks us through it, and gives us strength when we are weak and when we are totally floored by our circumstances.  Just saying His name, just calling on Jesus, brings comfort in times like these. 
Sick are healed; and the dead are raised; at the sound of Your great name
    I know.  My Ridge...he was physically saved and healing is happening in his body.  His disease could easily have taken his life-- he has lost so much blood, only to have it poured back into him through transfusions.  I can't even believe that we lived through that.  I remember telling my mom that I thought living through it would be harder than having him just be immediately better or him even being taken from this earth.  I remember feeling totally desperate.  I knew things would be okay, but I didn't know HOW- I didn't know if that meant Ridge would be okay, or if it meant we would survive, no matter if Ridge was okay or not.  I can't even try to think about what life would be like had Ridge not have survived.  Prayers for his healing were going out all over the state and much of the nation.  We used to get tons and tons of cards and letters from people we didn't even know, letting us know they were praying for Ridge.  And by the power of Christ, Ridge was spared, Ridge is doing fantastically.  But not everyone who becomes ill is healed.  And I don't think that means people aren't praying for them, I don't understand what it means, and I don't think it's fair.  But I don't get to call the shots-- I remember sitting there thinking, more than once, that I would be that mom whose child didn't live....and in the turbulent moment that was, a peace flooded me because Christ wasn't going to leave me, even if that disease took my child.  But that disease didn't take my child, and  I know it isn't fair that some children live and some children don't, and  I will never understand will always disturb me.  But I am thankful to Christ that Ridge is still here. 
My father in law wasn't healed.  No matter how much we prayed and cried for him, he wasn't healed.  He was taken, quickly.  Within days.  But while he died physically, he was raised to new life.  He trusted in the great name of Jesus, and I know he is with Christ now. 
So. the sick are healed-- either they are left here with us, healed, or they are raised in death if they belong to Christ.  And both of those things are only possible by the power of Christ. 

Jesus, Worthy is the Lamb that was slain for us, Son of God and Man
You are high and lifted up; and all the world will praise Your great name

Redeemer, My Healer, Lord Almighty
My savior, Defender, You are My King

Jesus, Worthy is the Lamb that was slain for us, Son of God and Man
You are high and lifted up; and all the world will praise Your great name

The song is heavy. The song is beautiful.  And the power of the name of Jesus is unmatchable.  Here's a listen to the song if you want to hear it.  And it's okay if you can't sing as pretty as Natalie Grant. I can't, either. :)