My Audience of One

About two nights ago, the house was completely silent and I was the only one awake. Moments like this are like a hidden treasure. Only the mothers reading this may understand how golden silence can be in the middle of the night. I smiled to myself as I basked in the moment, lavishing in the glorious goodness of seconds ticking without a stir in the wind. But as I stood there in my kitchen a thought hit me. At that very moment, there was indeed an Audience of One who was right there with me, watching me lavish in my thoughts. Watching me clean my kitchen counter-top to the perfection that I wanted it.  

I could not have planned this moment of joy any better. I smiled again knowing that my audience of One was my heavenly Father. He had been with me during the busyness of the day, but that particular day I hadn't noticed until the silence of night-time came along. You see, He is always there watching over us, yet sometimes we skim over the details of His presence because we get so busy doing other things. The kids. The home. Food. Work. Learn. Clean. And cycle about yet again. Nevertheless, our Audience of One still remains. He never leaves us. Like that good Shepherd who never lets His eyes veer off from his sheep, He's always there.

In the silence of that night, I thought I was by myself, but I wasn't. His presence became a comforting serenade. His arms became my solace. Tiredness was gone the moment I rested in His embrace and left every other thing to just focus on Him alone. 

So this one is for you who's up in the middle of the night, maybe feeling a little undone. Look, you're never alone. You always have an audience of One. He's there listening to all your stories. Whether they are stories of joys or woes, He's there for you anyway. Whether you shed tears of joy or tears of pain, He's there with you anyway. God neither slumbers nor sleeps. He's right there when we're really busy and also right there when we're done with the work for the day. He's there to fill up our empty vessels. To be poetic with us. To grant us increase. More strength. More grace. More and more...that we may be constantly replenished time and time again. Hallelujah. 

So What Should You Do When You Find Yourself Alone with God?

The essence of this post is not just to tell you that God can show up in your quietest moments. There's a call to action required here. You also have a role to play when it comes to unraveling the presence of God. The first thing to do when the thought hits us, just like when Moses encountered the presence of God in the burning bush, is to tell ourselves "God is here." And the second action to take: lose yourself in His presence. Embrace Him. Bow down in worship. Oh, not a second should go wasted in His presence. Take advantage of the solitude and the opportunity for it is precious. Ever wondered why Jesus would wake up so early in the morning and venture out to the mountains just to be with Him? Because you never come out the same way you came in. You become "better" in His presence. Just one moment with the King. It's nothing short of a miracle the way I emerged stronger than before after allowing myself to be free in His presence. I would give anything to have the same experience daily. 

What an amazing God. Such a priceless encounter with our Audience of One.   

Easy Life | A Post-Easter Reprise

Image source Flickr

AUDIO for this post: HERE

Exactly how
He designed the blueprint
A garden
Serenaded with
Endless supplies
Abundant life
Absence of worries
Inevitable Harmony
Undisputed Peace
Unquenchable Love
Unending Goodness

You see,
We've turned what He designed
Into what we created
We broke the ease
Shattered it like broken glass
On a lonesome highway
Diverted the course
Set ablaze the vision
We took the hard way
In our minds it made sense
our own work produced nothing but destruction and heaviness

On that unforgettable day
He stayed poised
Both arms stretched out
Left and right
On the cross at Golgotha
Not giving up
Even in death
His desire for our lives remained
His love
Given in the form of an undeserving exchange
His life for ours, our sins on Him
"Come to Me if you feel heavy," He says even now
"Take my yoke, it's easy and light
Take my spirit, it's gentle
Take my heart, it's lowly
Take all of Me,
I'll give you rest." (Matthew 11: 28-30)

☼ ☼ ☼ ☼ ☼ ☼ ☼ ☼ ☼ ☼ ☼ 

Easy Life...

Easy, easy, easy. If we have His rest, we would wake up every morning with excitement just to search for what the day holds. Like a man searching for treasure, we would do anything to find that one pot of gold. It won't matter if we have to struggle through the storm, lightning, and thunder to find the rainbow. Even if there are obstacles along the course, the only important thing would be to find the treasure in the dirt. Who said life was a bed of roses? No, I daresay not. There's always that dark horse of old whose only goal is to create obstacles. His one desire is to see you go down. As long as you are in this world, there will be challenges. But, you know what? Christ died to make your challenges nil. Zilch. Zero. Blank. Nul. Nada. Void. As if they never even existed. Victorious is what you are.

Just a Glimpse of Him

See, if we can just catch a glimpse of Him daily, then we will only see His face throughout the whole day. And if we can only see His face, then we can only carry His own yoke and not ours. And if we only carry His own yoke, then ours would become obsolete. Instead of heaviness, we will feel light. Instead of aggravation, we will become gentle. Instead of heartache, we will be overcome with laughter and joy. It takes daily reminders, sometimes we forget to catch a glimpse of Him.

You may wonder why certain people smile all the time. And even if they cry sometimes, they still break into a dance once morning comes. Why shouldn't they? It's great to know that there are real people out there that genuinely smile because they've found God. They can't wake up and focus their entire day on something they can't fix themselves. No, their eyes are continuously on the Master Potter. And suddenly what they couldn't fix becomes fixed because they praised Him through the storm. They are constantly aware of His power and capacity to do the impossible. Instantly, you wonder why they don't seem suicidal. You fidget with your fingers when you find out how that problem was so big but you never even noticed. You should stop trying to notice. You'll never find trouble in their homes. Never. They've given it all to God. They've let go, and ultimately they've let God invade their lives in a way that only Him can.

Stop now. Consider your own days. Are they fulfilling? Stop now. Take His yoke. Take it, take it. It's here right now for you. Don't try to find it in the wrong places. Today, I pray that the only face you will look upon will be the face of Jesus.


Prepare Your Horse for the Day of Battle | An Ode

Prepare your horse for the day of battle
Train it to be smart
Teach it to spot the enemy
Brush the hairs on its skin till they are smooth like silk
Let it neigh till the sun goes down
No sleep till the day's work is over

Prepare your horse for the day of battle
Be hardworking
Don't quit
Even if you are weary
Pick up your armor and do it again
There will be no horse like yours on that day

Prepare your horse for the day of battle
But when that day comes
Rise up in the morning with full confidence
Knowing the glory belongs to God
Rise up to do your best
But know God holds the Master Plan

Prepare your horse for the day of battle
But when that day comes
The strength will not be from the horse...or the rider
The strength will come from God
And the victory will be through God

Prepare your horse for the day of battle
But God decides what will happen
Guess what?
Whatever He decides at the battle field
Better than your choice could have ever been
Because He has seen the end from the beginning
He knows the plot inside and out
You can prepare all you want
But when that day comes
Give it all to the ONE who knows it ALL

Prepare your horse for the day of battle
But when you get to that day
Just let God, the Master AUTHOR write your victory story

Proverbs 21:31
"The horse is prepared for the day of battle, 
But deliverance is of the Lord."

God created us for His glory. No, you and I were not created to be mediocre. We are made in the image of a mighty God who surely has already orchestrated wonderful victories in our lives. The verse in Proverbs 21 speaks of preparing a horse for the day of battle. To me, this implies that anyone going to a battle field has work to do. You don't just wake up in the morning, sing a lullaby, and head to the battle field. No, a war requires years and years of training. It doesn't matter what the weather is like at boot camp.

You train under the scorching heat of the sun or while drenched in soaking rain. All for one fine day of battle. You suck in your breath, raise your legs, and jump through hoops. You climb up on wobbly ropes and slippery walls. You drag your tired self through the mud until you can no longer feel the blood rushing through your veins. You hold your breath as you swim through murky waters until you reach the target. 

That's how we are to train in this world. As children of the most High, there are daily battles to fight, and there are always victories to be won. So yes, of course we have to prepare the horse for the day of battle. We have to immerse ourselves daily in the Word. Pick up our armor. Practice how to use the gear. We have to surround ourselves with Godly people. We have to confess the Word into every atmosphere we come into. But friend, you know what caught my eye in that Proverbs 21:31 verse? That no matter how finely the horse is prepared for the day of battle, the deliverance is indeed of the Lord!

When it comes to that amazing day of victory, God knows exactly how He wants to write your story. You can prepare all you want (you should prepare, if you know that other proverb that says we should look at how the ants store up food for winter). Oh yes, you should have the spirit of excellence in every single thing that you do and in every place you find yourself. But when it comes down to how the story plays out, please sit back, relax, and let your Father unveil the story He has already written about you in the volumes of His book. Your life has been carefully orchestrated. Paths you're meant to take. People you are meant to meet. Lives you are meant to change. And accomplishments and awards you are meant to get. Prepare your horse. Your preparation is extremely important because the lessons you learn during training will help you on the day of battle. But, my dear, don't force things. Just trust God to unveil your victory. Let Him take the pieces of the puzzle and put them together being the wonderful Craftsman that He is.

Hallelujah. God be glorified in your life, and in mine, Praise His great name.

Love, J.