October 23, 2017

Your Presence

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All of my life I search for You Lord, You call me to Your side
With all of my heart I’m desperate for more, Your Presence is my light
The cry of my heart is to be where You are

I love Your presence, I love Your presence
Father, where You are is where I want to be
Hidden in Your courts is ev’rything I need

You are my strength You are my shield, surround me with Your song
All that my soul will know is Your peace, hide me in Your love
The cry of my heart is to be where You are

I love Your presence I love Your presence,
I can hear You call, I run into Your arms, Jesus
You are all my heart is longing for

Father,  You are my heart’s desire,
Overwhelmed I will worship You
I will dance to the dance of heaven
All my heart be enthralled by You

Gabriel’s Message – Sting

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The angel Gabriel from heaven came
His wings as drifted snow
His eyes as flame
“All hail” said he “thou lowly maiden Mary,
Most highly favored lady,” Gloria!

“For known a blessed mother thou shalt be,
All generations laud and honor thee,
Thy Son shall be Emanuel,
By seers foretold
Most highly favored lady,” Gloria!

Then gentle Mary meekly bowed her head
“To me be as it pleaseth God,” she said,
“My soul shall laud and magnify His holy name.”
Most highly favored lady, Gloria!

Of her Emanuel, the Christ was born
In Bethlehem all on a Christmas morn
And everyone throughout the world forever saved
Most highly favored lady, Gloria!

Gabriel’s Message  ~  Sting

I first heard this song sometime in the ’80s.  Musically depicting the events told to us in Luke  chapter 1 (verses 26-38, 46-55),  I was originally drawn to the description of the Angel Gabriel and what it must have been like to have been visited by a messenger of God!  Now that I am older and in a different place in my walk with God, I am still drawn to this song, although now focusing on Mary and her obedience.

To me be as it pleaseth God.” – that line always brings goose bumps! In Luke 1:38, Mary says more specifically: “I am the Lord’s servant. May it be to me as you have said.”  What beautiful humility!  What a servant’s heart! What a willingness to be a vessel (literally) for God. Surely she had to know the risks, the potential to be shunned and humiliated.  What would Joseph think?  What if he left her? She was a “lowly maiden” – what if she was financially unable to take care of herself and her child? What an amazing trust in God to fulfill His promise to her!  In verses 46-55 we see Mary’s beautiful song of praise:

“My soul glorifies the Lord and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, for He has been mindful of the humble state of His servant.  From now on all generations will call me blessed, for the Mighty One has done great things for me – holy is His name.  His mercy extends to those who fear Him from generation to generation.  He has performed mighty deeds with his arm, He has scattered those who are proud in their inmost thoughts.  He has brought down rulers from their throne but has lifted up the humble.  He has filled the hungry with good things but has sent the rich away empty.  He has helped his servant Israel, remembering to be merciful to Abraham and his descendants forever, even as He said to our fathers.”

To me be as it pleaseth God.”  Mary’s obedience brought our Savior into the world!  Do I say to the Lord, “May it be to me as you have said”?  May we follow Mary’s example and be as obedient, sisters!  When we do, God uses US as vessels for His divine purpose, and brings blessings to others!

Merry Christmas!

And may God bless you richly with rewards for your obedience to Him!

How Suddenly a Baby Cried

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“How suddenly a baby cried and all forever changed.
Through history soul by soul have come to find His healing grace.
He filled my troubled heart with peace, with hope of endless worth.
My voice will join the song of praise that tells Messiah’s birth.”

How Suddenly a Baby Cried ~ Keith and Kristyn Getty

A baby’s first cry gets the attention of everyone around, yes? At the very moment of birth, all in attendance pause to hear a baby’s first cry—expectant parents, other relatives and loved ones, the nurses, doctors, and other caregivers—and then sigh with joy, with relief and with thankfulness at that wonderful sound! When the baby Jesus was born, His cry, too, brought great joy to his parents, Joseph and Mary. Think of the setting:

And while they were there, the time came for her delivery,
And she gave birth to her Son, her Firstborn;
and she wrapped Him in swaddling clothes and laid Him in a manger,
because there was no room or place for them in the inn.
Luke 2:6 and 7

Joseph and Mary had traveled many, many miles to come to Bethlehem to register in the census. Upon their arrival, there was nowhere for them to stay but in a stable…and this is where Mary birthed her firstborn, Jesus, God’s Son. Not the best surroundings! So I would think baby Jesus’ first cry meant oh-so-very much to them!

But, remember, both Joseph and Mary were fully aware of just Who this tiny Baby was! Both had been told of the significance of this Baby’s life by angels. (Read the records here: Luke 1:26-38;  Matthew 1:18-25). They each had contemplated, wouldn’t you think, for the entire duration of Mary’s pregnancy the magnitude and the awesome, eternal implications of just Who their Son would be! Think for a moment…place yourself in their sandals…when the baby was birthed and took His first breath and released a cry, can you only imagine the praises that must have welled up out of their hearts? Can you imagine the look they must have exchanged as they realized that the promises that the angel had made to each of them came forth into fruition? That initial cry of baby Jesus truly changed the world! Perhaps Mary remembered the words she spoke when she was visiting her cousin Elizabeth:

Oh, how my soul praises the Lord.
How my spirit rejoices in God my Savior!
…because the Mighty One has done great things for me, and His name is holy.
His mercy is from generation to generation on those who fear Him.
Luke 1: 46-47 and 49-50

And so we do also exclaim and praise! Even now, don’t we love to sing these beautiful carols and anthems and songs that tell of Jesus’ coming and His birth. We are reminded of all that first little cry meant as it sounded out that the Savior was born! He had come…just as promised throughout the ages!

As the words of this beautiful song say,
“How suddenly a baby cried and all forever changed.
Through history soul by soul have come to find His healing grace.
He filled my troubled heart with peace, with hope of endless worth.
My voice will join the song of praise that tells Messiah’s birth.”

♥  ♥  ♥  ♥  ♥

May your voice rise up in praise and thankfulness to your heavenly Father!  Because of His great love for you, He sent His Son to redeem and save you; to rescue you and make available to you a relationship with Him for all eternity.  Never—don’t ever—doubt His love!

For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Romans 8:38 and 39

God bless you!    ♥    Merry Christmas!