For this post, I am doing something a little different. Last night at Breathe, multiple ideas came to me (no doubt from the Holy Spirit). I know that if I just pick one, I won’t get back to the others. So! I am putting all three into one blog post.
Worship as I Can
The image that comes with worship is standing, hands held high, singing so the next neighborhood over can hear the verses. And I see that at Breathe and during Sunday sermons. But sometimes, when I’m standing in the crowd, singing the words I know by heart, I find myself distracted. Either by someone I know, or from thoughts I can’t get to leave.
In those moments, I feel my lower legs and knees grow sore. And I get either a feeling, or a thought, that tells me, ‘sit down and actually worship me.’ In those moments, God is reminding me that he can see my thoughts and knows that I want to worship him, but don’t know how.
But it isn’t every time. Sometimes, I just don’t feel the gravity of the words. So what helps me get it is by putting my experiences and memories into the words. When singing about how we fall short or we aren’t enough, I remember the times I had my back to the wall in my room, curled up on my bed, crying because there was an obstacle that I just couldn’t get passed. When singing of God’s great love and grace, I remember when I would call out to him and he would envelope me in the peace that surpasses all my understanding. I know those moments happened, they are real. And that reaffirms that the songs I sing are not just Christian karaoke we come together to sing each week. We sing them because they are praises of what God has done in our lives and the lives of people around us.
Opening my mouth and repeating the words doesn’t mean anything if the singer doesn’t have a reason to. So I remind myself of all my reasons for singing that God is my Heavenly Father, who loves me enough to allow me to mess up and willingly picks up all my broken pieces.
Giving up our Crowns: A blurb of a story
The room was filled with people. Every single one is different from all the others. There is not a single similarity, but one.
Everyone, wears a crown.
They could be made of paper, or even the finest gold. But everyone, tall or short, young or old, poor or rich, everyone had a crown.
A man walks into the room, armored with a quiet demeanor. He looks as though he just came from a battle. He walks up to the crowd and stands there. The crowd stares back, adorned in all their crowns.
One person sees the holes on the stranger’s wrists, and two more through his sandaled feet. This person walks forward, slowly, as it leaves the comforts of the crowd and the assurance of the next day.
This person stands a few feet away from the stranger, who looks at them with the gentlest gaze. The person takes off their crown. They hold it in their hands, scared to let go. This crown means everything to them. To give it up is to surrender their choices, their aspirations, their life.
The crowd watches as the person sets the crown at the feet of the stranger. The now crown-less person gets down on their knees. The stranger offers his hand. The person takes it, standing beside him, and the crown on the floor.
A few more people walk forward. They are as hesitant as the other person, but their crowns are on the floor in the end. People walk over to stand next to the new crowd forming, but don’t surrender their crowns. But when they see that those that have are different, in a good way, they surrender theirs to understand just what it is. Some pick their crowns back up. Some keep close to it on the ground, with it in arms reach in case they need to grab it and run.
Some don’t surrender their crowns and join the larger crowd again.
Some in the far back of that crowd never saw the stranger.
The stranger sends those without crowns into the crowd, so those too hidden to hear of him, and what he has brought and done for them.
Some crown-less people go, some bring people back with them.
Some stay at the stranger’s side, not understanding that he is wherever they go. And they are afraid to tell those with crowns the weight their crown carries.
And that they don’t have to carry it.
Fighting my Battles
When I hear God will fight my battles, I’m a little offended. I go on defense for some reason. ‘No God, this is my battle. Let me do it.’
But as I think about it, a battle is one in a war. And I’ve heard of wars. No one truly wants to be in a war. After a battle, there are soldiers, torn flags, blood and grime, and misery.
I can barely stand the sight of one major injury, if all my ‘battles’ were real battlefields, how could I fight in such a setting?
I couldn’t. I know this. (Add in how I’m sorta a pacifist, and…)
My battles may be mental, emotional, and spiritual, but God can be on all those planes. And I know they are as traumatizing as a physical battle, though some may not see it that way.
So I am thankful that God faces my battles. I’m glad he goes before and comes back, calling it my victory.
Because he knows I could never succeed in the fight.
Created to Write