SO BE IT
Where have been and what have I been doing??? A lot, actually. But, maybe it has been a distraction from what God is doing in my heart. But He finally got my attention today. Since I am not spending any time in my bed anymore (PRAISE GOD FOR HEALING ME), I am still trying to figure out what my life looks like now. I did not realize that this would be something that I would have to do. But, here I am. Words like balance, time-blocking, rest, devotion, STRESS, and, “Oh, I don’t think I am quite ready for that” are in my vocabulary now. Before, I just couldn’t do it. Period. So, the outside world went on without me. Now, I am engaged in that outside world – and it is fast paced. Crazy. And there is a lot to do. To enjoy. Be a part of. It’s as if I have to learn how to say NO all over again, but this time for different reasons.
If You never part the sea, then I’ll walk with You on water.
If You never light my path, then I’ll hold the hands of God.
If You never grow my dreams, but grow my faith instead.
You’re the Living Bread and You see what lies ahead.
So be it. So be it, Lord.
Lord, what You have in store is more, more than I’ve ever dreamed before.
So be it. Trade my will for Yours.
So lead me on the journey You see fit. So be it.
If You never do the miracle I thought I’d see You do,
If You never feed five thousand with the gifts I give to You,
If the things I think I need will keep my heart from knowing the peace that comes from growing
In You, then let me say –
So be it.
So lead me on the journey You see fit and in the valley, teach me to submit.
My spirit, to You, Lord, I commit.
So be it.
If You never part the sea, then I’ll walk with You on water.
If You never light my path, then I’ll walk at night with God.
Words and music by Heather Sorenson
If there ever was a song to explain my life, then this one is it right now. We are singing this in choir at the moment in preparation a singing in church a few Sundays from now. If I do not pay attention, it is very east for me to just sing. And not pay attention to what I am singing. Just mouth the words. But, I have to say it right now – SO BE IT. Whatever God has in store for me is more that I could every dream before. It’s more:
Pressed down, shaken together.
I am going to keep this as written (the above) because I wrote it a week before the girls and I went to Europe. I really cannot believe that we went to Europe - London and Paris to be exact. And, the truth of those words still hold, I am just going to add some more.
As I type this, I am doing my old routine. Heating pad, foot up, miserable. BUT......
I am the same one who walked over 68 (!!!!!!!!) miles in Europe in 13 days. I am still in awe over what God did in my life there. In London, I walked tons and tons of stairs. There are stairs everywhere. In our flat. To the underground. What was comical was when we got back to the flat for the day, in order for me to go to my room, or even the bathroom, I had to yank my tired carcass up another flight of stairs. Up and down no matter where I went. It was an incredible trip. You know, Westminster Abbey, St. Paul's Cathedral, Tower of London, Tower Bridge, Greenwich, Burroughs Market, High Tea (Charlie and the Chocolate Factory themed), Tate Modern, National Gallery - Monet, Van Gogh, Renoir. Digestives. British Bake Off.
Then, the girls and I went to Paris and walked even more as we did not use any public transportation there. We had heard it was confusing and we had just done a lot of that in London, so any where we wanted to go we walked. It helped that our flat was in a VERY good location. We were in the 9th arrondisement, right bank, about about 3 miles from the Louvre. We did everything that we wanted and we did it all by walking. Again, we saw some famous pictures from the masters - Degas, Monet, Manet, Van Gogh, Renoir. Eiffel Tower. Musee d'Orsay. French sidewalk cafe. Coffee. Chocolate. Perfume museum - buying real French perfume in Paris, Hillsong Paris. We had so much fun. We saw so much.
The day I left for Europe, a friend of mine gave me a challenge - pray for the world as you see it. Let me tell you, the world was represented where we were. I heard so many languages and saw so many cultures!!! Those two big cities are melting pot of the world. And I am so glad that God brought to mind her challenge. I DID pray for the world as I was walking the streets. I couldn't help it. I saw such hurt in the eyes of my fellow man. I saw loneliness. I saw brokenness. But, I also saw a movement of God in both cities. We went to Holy Trinity Brompton Church, in London. On fire!!!! God is moving in London. A small remnant but it's growing. And in Paris, we went to Hillsong Paris. Again, God is MOVING. So many young people. This service too was on FIRE!! Incredible sermons at both places. Comforted by God's Word as well as challenged to stay engaged in my relationship with Jesus.
So, why do I type all this? Because I need to be reminded of all the amazing things God did for me while I was gone. As I type this, remember, I am back with my heating pad. I am at level 8 pain. Why? Who knows. But maybe, God is wanting me to REMEMBER His movement in my life. He did answer prayer. He does answer prayer. I can only shout from the rooftops of London - MY GOD IS GOOD. By looking back, I remember His faithfulness. I think when I am forced to be still I allow myself time for reflection. When I am at rest, I can have a pause. I see God in all His glory. In all His faithfulness. I can't help but give Him glory for all He has done for me.
I GIVE HIM ALL THE GLORY.
I have been studying Romans 12 in preparation for teaching it in a couple of weeks. I am only doing it a word at a time, and I have been gaining so much insight.
And so, dear brothers. I plead with you to give your bodies to God because of all He has done for you. Let them be a living and holy sacrifice - the kind He will find acceptable. This is truly the way to worship Him.
The word GIVE is paristemi in Greek. It means "to stand beside, exhibit, proffer, to be at hand, show." The picture I got was a little child standing next to his/her science project at an exhibit. He worked so hard on it. Hours and hours and now she is show casing all the hard work.
Then, moving on in the verse I land on LIVING. In the Old Testament any sacrifice was killed at the altar. But Christ fulfilled that when He became our Sacrifice. Because of of His death, I am forgiven, and can LIVE. I can now have a relationship with the Father. But, what Paul says here is to present a LIVING sacrifice. The Old system is no longer in place. I am the living sacrifice. By living out my life before God and man, I am offering myself to Him. Every time I love, it's an offering. And at times a sacrifice. I don't always find it easy to love. I am toooooo selfish. I want my way. I want what I think to prevail. But Jesus is asking me to die to myself. Death. Yes, that is the death that is to take place, but I am to go on living unto Him. Because it is Christ living in me.
As I was going to bed last night I had an AH-HA moment. In verse 3 Paul writes that God has given each one of us a measure of faith. On this verse, I had quite a time of worship because I asked the Lord for more. More faith.
I want everything He has for me. And even more. There were leftovers with the loaves and fishes. I want leftovers. I want more. increase my faith, Lord. Well, God gives us faith, He wants to offer ourselves as living sacrifices. So what does that look like in this day and age? I think the answer is found in verses 6-8. Paul has a list here of different gifts in the body of Christ. How we offer ourselves as living sacrifices is by operating in faith as we practice our gift - prophecy. encouragement. giving. teaching. When I am being who I was created to be in the kingdom, I am that living sacrifice. When I practice my gift, I feel His pleasure on me. There are times when it is so overwhelming.
One of my gifts is teaching. When I teach, I feel VERY empowered by the Spirit. Especially when I have completely submitted myself to Him. Allow Him to breathe through me. Boy, do I know His good and pleasing perfect will at those times. It is so obvious to me. It is to WORSHIP Him in all His glory in my gifting. I hope I am making myself clear. I believe He wants us to know Him more, have all that we can from Him, give back to Him through loving Him and loving others. And He wants us to do that by living unto Him here.
Ok. Let me bring this back to SO BE IT. I went to Europe not knowing I would survive all the walking. In fact, I tried to gear up for it by walking about a mile every day and I even did a 2 mile walk the week before. And I was up to 50 squats and 24 reverse lunges. I was miserable before I left because of that!!! Great. How was I going to do Europe? And, at the time, I did not know how many miles I was actually going to walk. I went to Europe with SO BE IT, on my heart. Whatever happens, happens.
He will raise me up on eagles' wings. A song by Shane and Shane. Which is based on Psalm 91. My son, Andrew had this playing for us, and I was overwhelmed at the power in the words, as they are straight from Scripture.
Psalm 91 was my life. I trusted Him to do a work and I was ok with whatever that looked like. I took one step at a time. I took advantage of a bench. I had brought my disposable heating pads and wore them every day in London. I completely trusted that He would carry me. AND HE DID. He increased my faith. My strength. He did it. I am in tears as I write this because I realize how incredible this is. I did as much as I could but it was He Who carried me on eagles' wings so that I would soar.
There were times that I grew weary. Like the steps to our flat in Paris. Extremely narrow. And spiral.
I had to climb up them after a long day. And climb down first thing in the morning. We went to Sacre Coeur (Basillica) in Paris.
It was about a mile up from our flat. And when I say up, I mean up. About 300 stairs up. After walking the mile to get there. It gave me the creeps walking up those rainbow steps. It was a mind-over-matter moment for me because I was so tired. And, yet, I had to climb. The view was gorgeous when we got there. The catch? I had to walk back down those same steps!!!! Stairs in Europe are straight up and straight down. I had the creeps so many times. Even on the escalators. How did I handle it? One step at a time. I knew God was with me, I I stepped out in faith, one step at a time. One foot in front of the other. I followed Jesus on this journey He had for me and I saw Him in so many ways. I didn't have a magic carpet to get me around......I had something better.
Sent by God to carry me.