Wednesday, September 22, 2010

I Have a Shelter

Listen here for free.

I have a shelter in the storm
When troubles pour upon me
Though fears are rising like a flood
My soul can rest securely
O Jesus, I will hide in You
My place of peace and solace
No trial is deeper than Your love
That comforts all my sorrows

I have a shelter in the storm
When all my sins accuse me
Though justice charges me with guilt
Your grace will not refuse me
O Jesus, I will hide in You
Who bore my condemnation
I find my refuge in Your wounds
For there I find salvation

I have a shelter in the storm
When constant winds would break me
For in my weakness, I have learned
Your strength will not forsake me
O Jesus, I will hide in You
The One who bears my burdens
With faithful hands that cannot fail
You’ll bring me home to heaven

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

One week...

In one week from today we will be leaving Louisville. 

Wow.  Now you know why there has been a blogging drought.  Somehow I haven't been able to justify in my mind spending time uploading photos and writing witty things about the amazing travel experiences we have had in the last six weeks (EIGHT different states seen!  whew!).  But this morning as I wrote that first sentence in my journal, I could no longer resist the longing I've had to pause and to reflect on what God is doing underneath the crazy chaos that is our life right now. 

"And Abraham went out, not knowing where he was going." 

What a comfort that sentence is to me this morning.  Two weeks ago, as we began taking pictures off the walls and posting our possessions on craigslist, I found myself thinking with greater frequency, "Are we crazy?  What are we doing?  Are we completely foolish to be leaving our apartment and life here when we only have 27% of our monthly support raised?"  But as a precious friend said last night, these times (when our circumstances strip away all that we normally cling to and rely upon and expose the deep needs that are really in our hearts), these are the times when His promises become concrete realities, when we are faced with the decision to trust or to fear, and when His Word can become fresh and new to our often hard hearts.  (Click here and here to see to this playing out in other friends' lives in much harder circumstances than what we are experiencing.)

"And Abraham went out, not knowing where he was going."

"By faith he went to live in the land of promise, as in a foreign land, living in tents with Isaac and Jacob, heirs with him of the same promise."

The land of promise.  Sounds nice, doesn't it?  Sounds like golden sunrises and scarlet sunsets, like bunnies hopping and streams trickling and milk and honey and picnics.  But according to Hebrews 11:9, the land of promise is really more like living in a tent in a foreign country.  How does that sound to you

So why would a person do such a thing?  I asked myself. 

"For he was looking forward
                      to the city that has foundations,
                                        whose designer and builder is God....
"As it is, they desire a better country, that is, a heavenly one.  Therefore, God is not ashamed to be called their God, for He has prepared for them a city."

What is my hope, my reason, my motivation...
         ...for going out, not knowing where we are going?
         ...for living in tents, as it were, in a foreign country?

Promise.  The land of promise.  The promise of a city with foundations, designed and built by God, a better country, a heavenly one, that He has prepared for us.  And not only for us, but for them as well.  And them. And them.  Someone just has to invite them.

So it's encouraging to read in Hebrews 11 that, no, we're not crazy for doing what we're doing.  While it may seem and feel and look like crazy, it's actually just what the Bible calls faith.