May 23, 2015

A Seal and a Song



The words to an old hymn, "Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing" have been on repeat in my mind.  
 I've been reviewing the words of the next to last verse:

"O to grace how great a debtor
Daily I’m constrained to be!
Let Thy goodness, like a fetter,
Bind my wandering heart to Thee.
Prone to wander, Lord, I feel it,
Prone to leave the God I love;
Here’s my heart, O take and seal it,
Seal it for Thy courts above."

Life has been whirling at an extremely fast pace.  And I don't think that I am alone. Everyone I visit with has many activities and responsibilities as well. How about you? Do you find this season of your like full and busy? My to do list exceeds the hours of my day. In the dailyness of life, I find myself in need of, and extending grace. I am a debtor to grace. When the days are bursting at the seams, it is easier to wander from the closeness of relationship with God for the urgent and in-front of me agenda. 

My heart echoes the words:

"Here's my heart, O take and seal it,
Seal it for Thy courts above."

I selected Song of Solomon 8:6 for my tenth Scripture memory verse this year. Here is the link to Beth Moore's blog and my friend Becky Jo wrote the blog post for this entry!

And a special thank you to Victoria Leigh for making a Visual Verse for me! You can find her artwork at this lovely website.

Come, Thou Fount of Every Blessing by Robert Robinson:

Come, Thou Fount of every blessing,
Tune my heart to sing Thy grace;
Streams of mercy, never ceasing,
Call for songs of loudest praise.
Teach me some melodious sonnet,
Sung by flaming tongues above.
Praise the mount! I’m fixed upon it,
Mount of Thy redeeming love.

Sorrowing I shall be in spirit,
Till released from flesh and sin,
Yet from what I do inherit,
Here Thy praises I’ll begin;
Here I raise my Ebenezer;
Here by Thy great help I’ve come;
And I hope, by Thy good pleasure,
Safely to arrive at home.

Jesus sought me when a stranger,
Wandering from the fold of God;
He, to rescue me from danger,
Interposed His precious blood;
How His kindness yet pursues me
Mortal tongue can never tell,
Clothed in flesh, till death shall loose me
I cannot proclaim it well.

O to grace how great a debtor
Daily I’m constrained to be!
Let Thy goodness, like a fetter,
Bind my wandering heart to Thee.
Prone to wander, Lord, I feel it,
Prone to leave the God I love;
Here’s my heart, O take and seal it,
Seal it for Thy courts above.

O that day when freed from sinning,
I shall see Thy lovely face;
Clothed then in blood washed linen
How I’ll sing Thy sovereign grace;
Come, my Lord, no longer tarry,
Take my ransomed soul away;
Send thine angels now to carry
Me to realms of endless day.

May 10, 2015

A Tale of Two Gates



Life is full of choices, of opportunities, decisions to make each day.  When I read Matthew 7:13, I knew this would be my 9th memory verse this year:

“Enter by the narrow gate. For the gate is wide and the way is easy that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many." English Standard Version

I've seen the beckoning wide gate recently. I have felt the apparent ease of the wide gate. I have heard the whispers that lead to destruction.  When the Salesman and I walk in the evenings, I've seen a beautiful visual of a narrow gate tucked between a dense hedge and brick borders.  

Some choices look so good to me.  But when weighed by the Truth of Scripture, they are gates that lead to destruction. The end of some opportunities presented is destruction, no matter how appealing they seem.  

The definition of narrow is "something that is considerably longer or higher than it is wide."  Doing right can sometimes seem like a long path.  Doing wrong can appear to be easy and appealing.  At times recently, I've wanted to do the easy. Life is hard. The enemy fights with every ounce of his fiber to tempt us to sin against our Father. The enemy fights to keep many entering at the wide gate. Sin is fun for a season; but we know sin brings death. GOD brings life. His plans are good for us and include a hope and a future. The devil is in the business to steal, kill and destroy. 

Make no fleeting or superficial mistakes,
No matter how appealing, the reality the enemy presents is fake
Many enter at his wide and welcoming gate
But before you go there, please consider and wait:

The narrow gate
Is where GOD waits
The narrow gate

The wide gate beckons
And wouldn't you reckon
The devil and his cohorts make it enticing
Appealing to me, like buttercream icing

The wide gate beckons and calls to me
To just step closer, so I can see
What waits on the broad road
Are just lies from a toad
Destruction is at end
Just beyond the beautiful bend
Destruction is at the end

Do not go to the wide gate
No matter how lovely
No matter how inviting
No matter how enticing
No matter.
Because it does matter.

Run the other way - 
Now, today.

Go to the narrow gate
There you will find ME, there I wait
At the narrow gate

You know the plans I have for you
Jeremiah 29:11-13 states a few
I have good plans for you

Enter by the narrow gate
There you will find me, it is there I wait
Enter by the narrow gate

A special thank you to Victoria Leigh for creating a visual verse. You can find more of her designs at Her Awesome Website.  And you can join in the fun at Beth Moore's blog Verse 9 post