Ice Cream Faith

6 09 2013

I have a friend who will tell you that ice cream is the world’s most perfect food. His son agrees. We ate dinner together recently, and there was a moment at the table that frames a perfect picture of faith for me. We enjoyed a delicious meal and even better company. Relaxing around the table, we continued to talk and laugh, valuing the doesn’t-come-often-enough time together.

All of the sudden, the little boy got a gleam in his eye. Despite having explained a few minutes earlier to his mom that he was full, he set his eyes on dessert. “Dad, can we go get some ice cream?” he said, with all the intensity, sincerity, and full-out cuteness of a six year old. I started giggling. His mom rolled her eyes. My husband nodded in approval. Dad, seeing his love for ice cream reflected on his little guy’s face, considered the request with deep thought.

The little one knew exactly who to ask for ice cream. If you want ice cream, ask an ice cream lover. He also asked with a boldness that makes me grin. He knew what he wanted and confidently, persistently, and passionately made his request. I want to be just like him.

My Jesus Resolution today is to have ice cream faith. Prayer requires this kind of faith. Often we go to friends, the internet, the refrigerator, the mall, or a celebrity to find what we need when the first lesson is to go to the One who is both able to answer our soul cravings and loves us beyond measure. Prayer also requires a bold courage. I tend to offer timid prayers, reasonable prayers, prayers that don’t stretch beyond my own imagination. You know, one scoop prayers. Big prayers help our faith reflect the glory of our big God and make room from Him to answer with triple scoop delight.

A Handful of Quietness

4 09 2013

The rich blessings that come from living in His presence and spending time in His Word are almost too many to count! We live in a world that makes it challenging to be attentive as we open our Bibles and listen to His voice. There are so many voices that try to pull at our hearts and command our attention. It is difficult sometimes to embrace the quiet stillness of God’s presence when we are swamped by the storms of stress and shame and the crashing waves of worry and fear. God has a remedy for our souls.

The wisdom writer wrote in Ecclesiastes 4:6, “Better is a handful of quietness than two hands full of toil and a striving after wind.” Busyness gets to us all. It can take over our days, command our time, dominate our thoughts, and pull at our spirits. Just a handful of quietness makes all the difference. A little stillness calms the storm in my soul. A touch of silence can open my ears to His voice. A moment of quiet refocuses my eyes and refreshes my heart. It helps me adjust my perspective and calm my anxious spirit. In the middle of the whirlwind that is life, I often find myself struggling to just stay upright as all of the responsibilities, expectations, and pressures swirl around me. Being still, even for just a moment, allows me to breathe in grace.

My Jesus Resolution today is take time for a handful of quietness. I am going to be deliberate about soaking in the presence of the Lord. I want to sit still in His love, allowing His mercy and grace to wash away my tension and stress. I am going to respond to the still, small voice that invites me into peace as I put my hand in His hand and rest in the quietness of His presence.


2 09 2013

Have you ever caught your breath in a moment of worship? His glory peeks over the horizon and, for just a moment, you can’t speak. His mercy overwhelms you, and you can do nothing but sink to your knees. His holiness whispers to your soul, and the only thing to do is cover your mouth. His love or power or grace takes you by surprise and the intensity of the moment compels you to bow in wonder.

Worship is the response of a heart that captures a glimpse of the eternal in the present. His nearness opens our eyes and readjusts our perspective. His power realigns what is possible in a world that is determined to show us our limits. Worship is the experience of stepping into His presence, offering praise, and walking away from the moment transformed.

Worship isn’t something that is relegated to Sundays. Worship flows from hearts that are sensitive to His presence, grateful for grace, and determined to be dependent. Our society encourages us to keep worship in a back drawer, something for Sundays or special occasions. Hearts committed to being like Jesus breath worship out like air. We draw in His blessings, His power, His mercy, His nearness, His peace, and worship flows out in response. Breathe in His goodness. Breathe out a word of praise.

My Jesus Resolution today is to make this a day of praise. I want to be especially mindful to let worship shape my perspective, praise align my priorities, and devotion define my direction. I long for worship to be as integral to my soul as breathing is to my lungs. When I am stressed or nervous or worried, I want the rising and falling of my chest to remind me to fall on my knees and raise my eyes to His face. “Let everything that has breath praise the Lord! Praise the Lord!” – Psalm 150:6