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Battle Songs

Sometimes the lines are scary.

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The ones that draw creases near my eyes, that point out that I’m tired. Broken, exhausted.

Sometimes, you want to duck. You’re wary of where the next bomb might drop.

A broken-down car seems like a small thing, right? But it’s the car that takes you to work, takes your family to church, provides a way to the store for groceries and takes your kids to the park.

Job loss is a bit bigger of a deal. But in the big scheme of things, it’s just a job, right? But how does a man feed his family, pay his mortgage, offer any kind of security without work?

And then there’s sickness. When the broken-down state of this world invades your very cells and you are dependent on medication, bracing for a better prognosis, doing all you can but knowing it’s not really up to you.

As I lay here in bed, recovering from surgery and elevating my leg above my heart. I pray. I think of the facebook posts that reveal frustration, pain, loneliness and loss. Little cries for help called status updates.

I think of conversations I’ve had with those I love and the places where the talk settles: kids growing up and growing apart from Jesus, marriages that can’t flourish because trust easily erodes like sandcastle walls, job interviews and unmet expectations.

We’re all of us battle weary. Even when we praise, even when we look to heaven and really mean it (the praising and the singing to God) we praise from the trenches. Even lives that look shiny and clean and enviable are touched and smeared and marred by the sinfulness of this world.

We need a tidal wave of grace.

A total drenching of Jesus’ love.

A free-fall into the depths of true goodness.

We need to lie broken on the beach, even if to faintly sing back to God the song of his love.

He will pick us up. Even if in pieces.

He will hear the faint song and he will take us home.

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Come in, O strong and deep love of Jesus, like the sea at the flood in the spring tides,

cover all my powers, drown all my sins, wash out all my cares, lift up my earth-bound soul,

and float it right up to my Lord’s feet, and there let me lie, a poor broken shell, washed up by His love, having no virtue or value,

and only venturing to whisper to Him that if He will put his ear to me,

He will hear within my heart faint echoes of the vast waves of His own love which have brought me where it is my delight to lie, even at His feet forever. (Charles Spurgeon, Morning and Evening, April 12)

My heart is like wax. It is melted…” {Psalm 22:14}

Broken shells still sing of the sea.

Does Jesus’ love sing from me?

Do parched lips, though weakly, declare

My joy in His faithful, loving care?

Does my voice, cracked but loyal, say,

“Jesus met me on the shore today?”

Am I content to be a broken shell, and motionless lie

Within the hand of Him that for me did die;

And sing to him songs of love and praise

Small echoes of the sacrifice he gave?

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3 Comments

  1. Kayla Stewart says

    Wow…what a great reminder of where our strength lies in these days of trouble on this earth and may our hearts be focussed on the ONE who redeems and brings joy in the midst of pain! Thank you for helping me do that, my friend, who is in the midst of pain! Love you!! Kayla

  2. timelesslady says

    Hi, I must say your post is one of the reasons I love blogging and the Internet. Amazing insight. You captured so perfectly how I feel, how we all feel at times in our lives. I found your lovely post by searching for seashells and seashell crafts. God led me to this post…a good devotional read for a rainy Sunday morning. God bless. Kathy
    PS Charles Spurgeon is one of my favorites. His wisdom endures.

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