Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Somalia for Christ

This is what I wrote a few weeks back after having a terrifying image of Somalia pop into my mind:

Somalia, oh Somalia!
Oh Lord
How my heart aches
How it is torn
For her
With years and years
Decades upon decades
Her people have been
Stricken, afflicted, dismayed,
And destitute
Helpless and without hope
Their hearts plagued
With animosity and pride
That have been manifested
Through years
Of conflict and war
Which have resulted in
Famine and drought
Much suffering
Much anguish and death

Oh and even more
To think
To ponder
Even for a sec
Of their spiritual state
Dead, in darkness,
And enemies of the Most High
They are
(As we once were)
Outside of Christ
Before a holy God
And that's a terrifyingly
Dangerous place to be
And they are blind to it

Yet who will warn them
Of the wrath to come?
Who will plead with them
To repent
And turn to Christ
Who will tell them
Of Jesus
Their only hope
Of peace and safety
Restoration and healing?
Whose blood
Can secure for them
A Redemption that's eternal?

I hear the call
Send me, Lord
I'll go!
To go shine
The light of the Gospel
In the darkness of Somalia
Not counting my life
Of any value
Yes, even willing to lose it
So that they may be saved
Willing to die
So that they may live!
I claim Somalia for Christ

Thursday, December 19, 2013

The Author of All My Days

 I guess I can spill the beans now, about what was, and well....still is in the works for me. Since...September I've been pursuing the opportunity to spend a year over in Ethiopia doing gospel ministry among Somalis there through PIONNERS missions organization. This past Tues I had submitted my application; moving forward I was looking at a week of orientation in January, assuming that would've gone well, I probably would started raising support in February, then by April would've been heading over to the Horn of Africa. It was all going well two days ago, but....

 Yesterday morning woke up around 4:40ish had breakfast, went to work at 6. About 45 minutes in my stomach started to ache, but ignored it and worked through it. A few minutes later though, it got worse added nausea to it. jump ahead a bit, one of my coworkers came into the break room laying on the floor, but not passed out....but it seemed like I was going to at any moment. One of  my managers came in to ask if I wanted my parents to pick me or wanted to go the hospital (even offering to get an ambulance). Knowing my condition, I agreed to be taken to the ER, even though I didn't want it. The choice had to be made. Happy side of the ending is that the blood test, and urine sample, came back good and clear. The not so happy side is that I'll be getting medical bills as a result of this ER visit, and to add, I'm not covered under insurance. This means, that there is a good chance that I won't be able to go over to Ethiopia till 2015. My heart is discouraged for sure.

 "I as on a good track, and not I'm postponed, why?", "Certainly the Lord knows that my heart aches for the Somalis, why would he delay me?", "I just don't understand God? Why would allow this?" These are honest heart felt questions that I've asked myself, and the Lord yesterday, and earlier today, but I know His answers, and His answers are found in "Who" He is, not in "Why" He has done what He has done....or better yet, what he has "allowed' to happen yesterday morning. I'm reminded, as if the Lord is saying to me, "I am God, there is no other", "I am good, and do good", "I am faithful and true", "I am the sovereign Lord of all". Ha! I know full well that it's foolish to blame God for the incident yesterday morning, even regardless of the fact that He allowed it. What happened...happened.

 So Being reminded of who He is, and the promises that are found in His Word to His people. Promises like:

"And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose." ~ Romans 8:28


"...who works all things according to the counsel of his will." ~Ephesians 1:11b

Among many others.

Then my mind goes back now to the character of God. More specifically to His sovereignty over all things. He's sovereign over all nature, all nations, all events that happen in the world (whether triumphant or tragic). He's even sovereign of my life; my life as a whole and every single intricate detail. These things take me to Psalm 139, where we find in verse 16...

"Your eyes saw my unformed substance; in your book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me, when as yet there was none of them." ~Psalm 139:11

 Yes! Even in this moment my heart is glad and rejoices at this awesome truth! The Lord most high is the Author of all my days, every single one. The one who knows the beginning of my days to the end in this life, orchestrates every one of them for His glory, from the best of my days to the worst. That includes yesterday; Dec. 18 2013, it's events was orchestrated for my good and His glory. So that is why I'm not distraught or am in despair, because I look to Him, cling to Him, knowing full well that He is good and does good!
 On another note. Just because my trip to the ER yesterday may postpone my going to Ethiopia to do gospel ministry doesn't mean I'm gonna stop pursuing it. Nope, because my heart still aches for the Somalis! I still aim on going, I just have to have patience, and be faithful with the Gospel in the here & now. When will it be when I go? The fall or winter of next year? Sometime in 2015? Not sure, but the Sovereign Lord knows!

Monday, December 16, 2013

In Christ, With Christ

 I know that this little writing will fall terribly short of the glory, beauty, loveliness, and dandyness of this stellar doctrine.....yet I can say that I've done my best to paint it.

I'm in Christ
And Christ is in me
He is the vine
I'm am a branch
I abide in Him
He abides in me

It's in Christ Jesus
That I have salvation
And have redemption
It's in Him
That I'm no longer
Under condemnation
And stand forgiven
In Christ
I'm a new creation
The old is gone
And the new has come
It's in Him
That I'm no longer God's enemy
But now His son
It's in Christ
I'm no longer in the domain of darkness
But now in the kingdom of light
And it's in the Savior
That I who was once blind
Now have sight

For it's with Christ
I've been crucified
And have died
That I've been buried
And have risen
To walk in newness of life
With Him my life hidden
And it's with Him
That I'll appear in glory
With Christ
I'm a fellow heir
And when comes again
With Him
I'll be caught up in the air
For with I share
In His death
His resurrection
The riches of  His glory
His inheritance
And the fellowship
That He has with the Father

Oh the beauty
The wonder & loveliness
And the mystery & dandyness
Of the reality
Of being
In Christ & with Christ

Again I feel, or rather....I know there's more that can be said here, but may what is written encourage you, and compel you to live in light of this glorious gospel truth.