Welcome to Friday’s Praise.
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Today, with the girls at Opa and Oma’s, I’ve taken the time to sit and listen to God’s heart. A song came up on my list of subscriptions, and as I listen to it, it moves me to tears.
This Love has and continues to pursue my heart, mind and soul out of fear and into unfathomable peace. As a Prodigal, the enemy kept a blindfold over me, a blindfold I cherished because I felt it kept me safe. You see, any piece of light frightened me. When I look back on those twenty plus years, I see how fear pervaded so much of my life. I couldn’t be myself, I couldn’t share the anger, the grief and hurt that lay buried deep, I couldn’t get beyond the cloak of fear that held me captive.
But when God ripped that cloak from me by the awesome power of His Spirit, I was brought into the Light. Since then, I keep going back to hide behind the clefts in the rock because it is the safe I know, but unlike before, I am no longer tethered to that fear. Now, because I know who my Savior truly is (gentle, kind, merciful), I have given my Savior permission to draw me back into the Light. And He keeps doing it, again and again. For I am tethered to Him – a Love that remains.
By Anna Louise Smit
I’ve been cowering in fear
Of voices harsh I hear
Telling me to hold back
To hide and slink from You.
From Truth who lives in me
To believe You’re less
Less than whole, complete
Than Love who’s set me free.
I flee who lives and breathes in me
The girl You shaped and formed
Fearfully, wonderfully made to live
Not to slink and hide, but freely give.
But Truth You breathe as song in me
No longer dead in fear and shame
But crucified with Christ I live
Not to slink and hide in fear, but rise.
To run there where You send me go
Believing tethered soul You’ve made
For more than sitting shackled still
But for waters deep, on faith to walk.
For Life to breathe and soar
Secure and safe in You
Perfect Love my trembling fear
In Kingdom Power meets, me sends.
Where broken, wearied hearts reside
Waiting long for eagle’s wings to fly
For not my own, but precious King’s
Own Spirit Song to sing.
Of Hope not flown, but carried strong
On wings of Dove, of Promise Self
Still beating strong in children gone
Weeping tears, Your blood bled for us.
That they, as I, might run again
Toward, as Peter standing strong
On nothing less, but solid Rock,
Jesus Christ our righteousness alone.
Our only Truth and Way and Life
The One on whom our sin was cast
Our freedom bought in Spirit sealed
Our sinful hearts You breathe alive.
Softened, held in Father’s arms we cry
Our pain and grief You bore
Our hearts to hold, return
In cast and poured.
Silenced, all accusing tongues
We hear You call us come
On Abba’s stone inscribed
Our Names You have Beloved writ.
This Love is taking me places I would never have dared to go before. It is taking me deeper and deeper into pain and suffering, but in the process more and more layers of fear are being stripped and more and more joy is being released. It has meant giving God the control. The God, who is placing safe boundaries around me, by pruning everything that keeps me from His loving arms.
I am discovering the truth of Colossians 2: I AM already free. Nothing and noone can ever separate me from the Love of God. Each and every curse, each and every power of evil, each and every lie spoken into me has been nailed to the cross and destroyed. All I have to do is speak God’s Word – the Truth – over myself and my loved ones. That’s all it takes to send the enemy packing. For God’s Word slices through any accusations directed at me by the enemy. Hallelujah! Praise be to our mighty, mighty God.
Oh Father God as I recall the smothering fear that once held me back from Your beautiful, beautiful face, my heart aches. Aches for all Your children who are still sitting in the dark, too scared to come forth. Father God, I so thank You for the power of the cross. I thank You that even now these children enslaved to fear are covered in the blood of Your Son, in the freedom of their birth right as children of the Most High King. I thank You that even now, You remain in their midst. They cannot yet see Your beautiful face, but we declare the truth of Your Word over them: they are Yours. Safe in Your Hands. Your Love has never and will never, ever fail them. For when You rip that awful blindfold off them, they will see who they truly are: co-heirs with Christ, created to do the good works You have prepared for them. Thank You that as You strengthen and lead them, they will learn to live into their true identity, as Your beloved, cherished, chosen and called children. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.