looking for a pilot

“To lament is to be utterly honest before a God whom our faith tells us we can trust.” from Journey to the Cross, lent devotional

When I am utterly honest, my lamenting needs trustworthy ears. If I am going to tell true words – even if they are scary or joyful or heavy or childlike – I need to tell them to the most trustworthy sort. And this is my journey through Lent, toward the throne of grace with confidence to lay down the burdens Christ wants to bear. This week the theme is lament.

I believe He is trustworthy, so I can be honest. I can and should lament the stretching divide my honesty reveals – all the ways I am an imperfect human. But I believe He is trustworthy, so I can be honest.

I can hear myself giving encouragement about honesty to close friends, “If you are truly honest, though your sadness will be great, your gladness will be greater.”

I still think that’s true. We should never sugarcoat struggle or sorrow or sin. We should not try to “get by” with whitewashed smiles and mustered courage. We should be honest about brokenness and shortcomings and tired bones.

We should be honest because He is trustworthy and ready to hear the deepest laments of our souls. If you’re like me, the lamenting process will make you want to follow someone – it will make you desperate to be swept up into someone else’s plan, someone whose plan doesn’t muck up or peter out or fade to gray.

Lamenting my own depravity during Lent is like opening my eyes to find how far I’ve foolishly paddled out to sea in my little rowboat. And it makes me look for a pilot.

what you believe changes everything

Just this today, friends.

Our work is to believe and to keep believing. Garrels says,

“What you believe changes everything.”

This work of hanging on to the promises of future grace, of believing God for all that is promised in Christ, this transforms a life and shapes the way you see and mourn for tragedy.

for your viewing pleasure

With the explosive popularity of Youtube, we can watch things that would have been far outside our reach twenty years ago. The technology even in the past ten years is unbelievable – it puts in front of our eyes what we would never dream of seeing and conversations we would never dream of hearing. I’d like to just give you a sampling of some of the wonderful things I’ve stumbled upon.

I hope, in watching these, you taste and see that the Lord is good.

I hope you can marvel at Creation the way we were made to marvel. And I hope that marveling draws you closer to the throne of grace where we are invited to commune with the Creator.

it’s a good, good morning

I just wanted to send this off before the day runs away from me.

Christianity Today named Love & War & the Sea In Between by Josh Garrels Album of the Year for 2011. You owe it a listen. Oh, and you can download the whole album for free on bandcamp.

Nothing like a good soundtrack for naming blessings today. The tree outside the window, begging for snow, the slightly sore muscles after a workout, the Christmas gifts I’ll be packing up before I head to southwest Iowa after work today. All gifts, these.

let LOVE fly like cRaZy