Monday, December 15, 2014

Music Share: Silent Night by Pentatonix

It's the perfect time of year for a bit of Christmas music, yes? And this one is lovely, reverent, refreshing. Take a listen. Be blessed this Christmas season. All His best.

Monday, December 1, 2014

Music Share: A Little While Longer with Cory Asbury and Laura Hackett Park from OneThing 2011

OneThing is coming again in less than a month. I enjoy streaming it online. This song, this moment was one of my favorite moments from back at One Thing 2011. I hope it encourages you. If you want to watch OneThing 2014 at the end of December, check out for times. Once there, click Prayer Room and Live Webstream. Such a blessed time!!



Thursday, November 20, 2014

Music Share: On Our Side by Lincoln Brewster

Recently, I put together a playlist of songs that have helped encourage me. I've been sharing some of them with you over the last few weeks. Here's another one by Lincoln Brewster. See if this encourages you and remember God's got this.


Thursday, October 9, 2014

Music Share: Banner by Desperation Band

Just got this new CD from Desperation Band entitled Banner. Here's the title cut, featuring Jonathan Moos. See what you think:

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Music Share: Overwhelmed by Big Daddy Weave

I love songs that are directed toward God, (rather than, say, music that attempts to direct people). I heard just the tale end of this song on the radio one day a couple of weeks ago. Had never heard it before. Then, during a recent worship night at our church, one of our amazing youth singers sang it. His humility and sincerity ushered the Holy Spirit into the room in a way that hadn't happened yet that night.

Check out this song. I believe it will encourage you.

Monday, September 8, 2014

Music Share: Out of Hiding by Steffany Gretzinger

Steffany's new album, The Undoing, is still my favorite right now. Here's another song that's running through my mind and heart: Out of Hiding. The lyrics show a loving Father and a passionate Savior. See if this encourages you:

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Music Share: Morning Song by Steffany Gretzinger

Steffany's music touches me. She has a sincere, anointed, and raw style. Her first solo album (following all her work on Bethel's albums) came out a week ago. The whole album is so creative. I love it. The very first song is moving, helping us see God the way Chris Rice's "Smelling Coffee" did about fourteen years ago. God is with us as we awake in the morning. He's so near. Listen to the words, see if they make you consider God and His love in a different way.

Check out "Morning Song" from the album The Undoing here:

Monday, August 25, 2014

Music Share: We Dance by Steffany Frizzell Gretzinger & Bethel Music

Here's an encouraging song for your day and your walk with Jesus. (From Bethel's You Make Me Brave album.)


Saturday, August 9, 2014

Music: Today is Beautiful by David Dunn

Sometimes you just need a bit of encouragement, yes? This song speaks to me right now. See if it blesses you.


Monday, July 21, 2014

Sighs and Prayers


How often do you sigh? 

Recently I realized I was sighing a lot. And God spoke to me and said to pray every time I do. Generally when I sigh, I’m doing one of four things: 

1) Reliving an ugly moment in my life. 

2) Worrying about a future moment in my life. 

3) Needing a deep breath. 

4) Feeling content. 

Another question for you: is sighing a sin? 

No, I don’t believe it is. If it were, contented sighs would be ungodly, and that’s ridiculous. (grin) 

But I love God’s invitation: pray whenever I sigh. First, that causes me to stop and think about why I did. Was I feeling regret? Worry? Contentment? I could pray about all of these. I could leave the past in the past, extracting the lessons. I could trust God with the future—that upcoming situation that could require what I couldn’t give. I could thank Him for the current blessings that made me feel grateful. What an invitation. 

Oftentimes we sigh because we’re under a burden. By turning those things over to God, we let Him take the burden—which leads to less stress in our lives. 

Do you ever pray about something and “leave it with God,” only to fret about it later? 

This invitation to pray every time I sigh is a great exercise in praying without ceasing, in releasing my burdens to the Lord, in living out my trust. 

How has God graciously helped you lately? 

* Photo credit: "Daisies" by Gualberto107

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Music Share: You Make Me Brave from Bethel Music

Sang this one at church camp this week, a few times. Now it's running through my mind over and over. Enjoy!

Friday, June 27, 2014

Passion - Let It Be Jesus (Live) ft. Christy Nockels

Can't get enough of this song or God while I listen to this song lately! (From Passion Band's release: Take it All)

Sunday, May 25, 2014

The Answer is Yellow

Yellow paint*

Have you ever prayed desperately for an answer? I’m not talking about a “yes” or “no” answer, but a fill-in-the-blank answer. An I-can’t-figure-this-out answer.

Maybe you’ve needed direction about something.

Perhaps you’ve wondered why you aren’t advancing where you want to. Why, for example, if you’re investing all your efforts in your career, making sacrifices, praying, tithing, aren’t you advancing?

Why aren’t you seeing the breakthrough?

So, you ask God. “Lord, what am I missing? What is holding me back? What’s in the way?”

Sometimes He does answer, right away.

Sometimes God doesn’t answer.

Sometimes time will teach us.  

Sometimes God will send someone with a word of knowledge or prophecy.

The key is to be open.

You might say, “I’m open!”

How willing are you to hear?

“I’m willing! I’ve even fasted. I’ve been asking, seeking, and knocking. I’m asking trusted friends, mentors, my pastor. I’ve got nothing! What am I missing?!!”

Ever been there?

Me too.

But I’ve learned something.

Sometimes the answer is “yellow.”

Stick with me here. “Yellow” is a stand-in word. “Yellow” can represent anything. It’s the blank-filler.

“Lord, what is the answer? Why can’t I move forward? What am I not seeing?”

“The answer is _(yellow)_.”

But often times we’ve already ruled out “yellow.” We’ve got twenty-five reasons why “yellow” couldn’t possibly be the answer. It can’t be God. “Yellow” doesn’t line up with God’s best for us, with His word, or His message. “Yellow” isn’t it.

Still, one or two of your trusted friends said it was “yellow” just last week.

“Nah, can’t be. I know it’s not ‘yellow.’”

So, we push it aside. We search for something else. Anything else. Something that lines up with what we know to be true. Something that feels right, looks right, seems right.

Guess what?

We’re wrong.

The answer is “yellow.”

“Yellow” is why we can’t advance.

“Yellow” is what we’ve forgotten to do, to follow through on.

“Yellow” is the solution to the problem we’re facing.

“Yellow” is what we don’t want to see.

“Yellow” is God’s answer.

The moral: sometimes the very thing we’re ruling out is the thing God is trying to show us.

Ever grown frustrated with the silence of heaven?

Sometimes God will stop speaking. We’re not hearing it anyway. Then we get frustrated because all of our fasting and crying and searching doesn’t elicit God’s response. Now what?

We end up resenting God. But God has already spoken. In pride or human reasoning, we’ve ruled out His answer. We know better.

So, ask yourself: are there any areas in your life where the answer has already come? Where you may have ruled out what you heard, even though you have sound reasons for doing so?

Perhaps it’s time to go back to “yellow.”  

* Photo credit: "Abstract Brush Lines" by Janaka Dharmasena

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Sinking Deep by Hillsong

I cannot get enough of this song lately. Both the lyrics and the piano bless me. Give it a listen:

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Music Inspiration: I Am by Crowder

Music really encourages me. Here's a song I can't hear enough lately: I Am by Crowder from his upcoming solo release:

Friday, February 14, 2014

Encouraged by Love

heart made up of flowers*

Every spring (and other days throughout the year, actually), I pull out this gem from the Song of Songs 2:14—

“O my dove, in the clefts of the rock, In the secret places of the cliff, Let me see your face, Let me hear your voice; For your voice is sweet, And your face is lovely.” (NKJV)

The Song of Songs can be taken literally, to refer to husbands and their wives. The book can also be taken symbolically to refer to Jesus and the Church, His bride. I love reading the Song through that lens because you have to look beyond the more obvious interpretation.

In this verse, Jesus speaks an invitation to His beloved, an invitation to get alone with Him, to commune with Him. Not only that, but he affirms us as well. Symbolically, the voice and face could refer to insecurities we might have, imperfections we might perceive about ourselves. But, Jesus addresses those and displays His adoring heart.  

The picture that comes to mind (bear with me, it’s a parent-child picture, not a romantic one) is that of a child who has melted chocolate on her face. She’s come to you for a hug. Will you reject her because she’s a bit messy? Nope. That chocolate smudge will not hinder your adoration of her. Jesus sees our imperfections, better than we can see them ourselves, but those “smudges” do not, cannot block His love for us. So, He affirms us—come to Me, get closer. Don’t hide your face.

He also wants to hear us. The psalmist encourages us to pour out our hearts to Him. We might have insecurities about what we hold in our hearts, about what we would voice. But Jesus knows it all anyway. Don’t withhold your heart because it’s not full of beautiful thoughts 24/7. Just speak. Just pray. Just commune. Because Jesus accepts us!

Simply putting those thoughts into words today encourages me. How about you? 


Photo credit: "heart made up of flowers" by "africa" at