The Beauty of Holiness

is the beauty I want.

Straight from your holy place
Lord make us holy
As You are holy
Lord send it down
Just a little bit of heaven here on earth
Lord send Your glory

Lord, we need You,
Lord, I love You,
Thank You Jesus.

-Sara Groves, “Glory Come Down”

Holiness- a bit of heaven here on earth- His glory!  It seems crazy to think that this has been His plan since before the world began.  Despite the intense lack of holiness that has permeated earth for millennia, He keeps doing it: buying us back and setting us apart, sending bits of heaven to earth and making things right.

Lord, we DO need you.  May we always welcome the passionate and pure fire of Your love, no matter how uncomfortable the heat at times.  Thank You for making Yourself at home here on earth and in us.

On the Present: What I Thought I Wanted

“Some luck lies in not getting what you thought you wanted but getting what you have, which once you have got it you may be smart enough to see is what you would have wanted had you known.” -Garrison Keillor

I happened to hear this quote a few weeks ago, thought about a song by Sara Groves, pondered a blog post…and put the idea into my “blog” list on my phone.  Yay for the  memo function!

Before I add these lyrics, let me add a caveat: I am NOWHERE near Job.  My life has been basically as cushy as a life can be, especially when  I consider the challenges faced by people around the world.

That said…I’m broken.  There are things I’ve wanted that are vastly different from what I got instead, from who I am instead. In better moments, I see God’s sovereign hand in providing what I needed despite brokenness; in other moments, I just feel broken. My guess is that most of us realize our brokenness- some times more intensely, some times less.  But the challenge remains: be broken, and be faithful.

Ok, on to Sara’s thought-provoking lyrics:

When I get to heaven I’m gonna go find Job
I want to ask a few hard questions, I want to know what he knows
About what it is he wanted and what he got instead
How to be broken and faithful

A Promise Kept

“Better than our promises is the day we got to keep them.”

Sara Groves’ song, “Different Kinds of Happy,” is sweet in a realistic way that many songs about relationships lack.  She writes from the perspective of someone who has been married for awhile.  Several of the songs on her album explore the richness that comes from time together, and they make me look forward to experiencing that time myself at some point.

In the meantime, though, I found this phrase to be true for my relationship with God.  As I talked with a middle school Sunday School class recently about commitment to God, I remembered my own teenage prayers of consecration and surrender.  Without knowing all that it would entail (and realizing that at the time, to some extent), I committed everything I could think of.

Looking back, the days of keeping those commitments were sometimes much more challenging than whispering the words in naiveté…and yet, much better.  As I told the girls, those commitments made by the grace of God and kept by the grace of God in response to His faithfulness set a course for my life that I will not change.

On Being the Body: on to the moon?

It was there in the bulletin
We’re leaving soon
After the bake sale to raise funds for fuel
The rocket is ready and we’re going to
Take our church to the moon

There’ll be no one there to tell us we’re odd
No one to change our opinions of God
Just lots of rocks and this dusty sod
Here at our church on the moon

We know our liberties we know our rights
We know how to fight a very good fight
Just get that last bag there and turn out the light
We’re taking our church to the moon
We’re taking our church to the moon
We’ll be leaving soon

Sara Groves, “To the Moon”

This song is a good, sarcastic reminder of why the church exists.

If the local church could continue to operate on the moon exactly as it presently does, we are in a problematic place.  If no one in our culture is being impacted, something must change.  Jesus came to heal the sick, and He sent us empowered by His Spirit to do the same.