Thursday, December 9, 2010

Taste and See

Last week, I turned 24. I cringe even as a type those words. One more year and I will have lived a quarter century. It isn’t only the number that makes me realize I am getting older, but things are changing that makes me know the truth. For example, I’m in bed as I type this… at 9:30pm. After I go the gym, I really hurt. I often pass up invitations to do things. I desire to settle down. Now, I get up hours BEFORE I have to go to church. I talk about how some of the younger generation just doesn’t get it. I have actually thought music is too loud. My father and I used to see each other every morning… before, as I was just going to bed and he was getting up, but now we share a pot of coffee together and talk about business, the economy, and how great it is to be an Auburn Tiger. (I have always talked about that, but wow they sure do look good.) My “Save the Date” magnets are beginning to consume my fridge. I read... All the time… And I like it. Sometimes I even laugh aloud as I read. Last week, while frustrated I think I used the term “dag gommit!” I fall asleep during great movies. My Christmas list has gone from speakers to sport coats. The only thing that has kept constant is probably my childish sense of humor and my maturity. That doesn’t seem all that good.
Really I only joke about getting old. Twenty-four really isn’t old, but it has begun. The hands of time that count my years seem to be spinning faster than I ever remember them turning. I do know that if God has plans of keeping me on this earth, then He has many more awesome years planned just waiting for me to discover.
I look back over this past year and still can’t believe what He has done. My life has flipped in a way I never expected it to. I have been so blessed to do the work he has allowed me to do. I remember walking hand in hand with Fatuma (3 year old Ugandan girl) down the a Ugandan dirt road to get juice and bread and thinking to myself, “I get to do the best work in the world. I am blessed beyond blessed.” This time last year… if you told me all that has taken place, would have taken place this year, I would have called you crazy. Absolutely out of your mind. That is another reason that makes me realize one important truth; Sometimes I get so frustrated that God won’t reveal to me “His Will” for my future. I know I have prayed before, “God if you would just tell me then I will! But speak up!” I have realized that sometimes he waits… and waits… and waits until we are ready to hear it. We think we are, but often we are not ready to hear His voice or know His Will. This time last year if God would have laid out my list of things he was going to do in the twenty-third year of my life I would have laughed and said, ”Ok… good one…. Now seriously Lord… should I get the house in Ross Bridge or Meadowbrook?” Jesus elbows God and they exchanged smirking glances with each other as they watch me try to figure out my life. He has got this ALL FIGURED OUT! Why can’t I realize that? Why is it so hard for me to TRUST that?

All that really makes this scripture come alive and helps me understand that he wants to do SO MUCH in our lives.
Habakkuk 1:5
 “Look at the nations and watch and be utterly amazed.
   For I am going to do something in your days
   that you would not believe,  even if you were told.”

Over the past year, I have had ups and downs. There have been trials more difficult than I have ever faced and mountaintops experiences I didn’t realize were possible. This is what comes to my mind when I think of the process throughout the past year. God is so good and I am in such awe of his greatness right now. He has brought my life and others through so much and revealed his Grace more and more.

I have tasted of the Lord
I have walked away
I have trusted the world
And I know he is still faithful

I have tasted of the Lord
I have felt my heart convicted
I have tried to go my own way
And I know he has called my name.

I have tasted of the Lord
I have turned to Him in brokenness
I have been changed by his grace
And I know he is good

I have tasted of the Lord
I have surrendered my life
I have walked in his footsteps
And I know He is my guiding Sheppard

I have tasted of the Lord
I have trusted in His voice
I have stepped on the water
And I know he said Go!

I have tasted of the Lord
I have walked on unfamiliar ground
I have leaned on his understanding
And I know his ways are higher than mine

I have tasted of the Lord
I have stepped across the globe
I have held his children’s hands
And I know that he was with me.

I have tasted of the Lord
I have watched lives transform
I have observed countless miracles
And I know He is Healer

I have tasted of the Lord
I have witnessed evil and death
I have felt his wings of protection
And I know He is my refuge

I have tasted of the Lord
I have fallen
I have struggled
But I know His blood covers me

I have tasted of the Lord
I have given my trust
I have breathed new life
And I know He is my All in All

I have tasted of the Lord
I have experienced a love so deep
I have been given grace so sweet
I have for the first time found FULL life in Him.

Psalm 34:8
Taste and see that the LORD is good; blessed is the one who takes refuge in him.

I am truly amazed by God. Yahweh. I sometimes don’t even know how to say it, but I have become more and more aware of God in everything. Things I never used to see as God. The small things like the whisper of his voice that is inaudible, but like an impression on my heart that I know didn’t come from me. The big things like creation, the human eye and how it works, my dog Tommy dreaming and woofing quietly in his sleep at the foot of my bed, or for a split second grasping the beauty of the ripples across Smith Lake mirroring the orange and blue of God's brush-stroked sunset. Just like when I think of eternity, my human finite mind can only grasp God for seconds at a time. I can only imagine what it will be like seeing Jesus face to face. I strive for a “well done, good and faithful servant” followed by a powerfully swift high-five. Not sure if God gives high-fives, maybe he offers a closed fist for a solid “pound.” Whatever the greeting is, I bet it all will be greater than I could ever ask or imagine.

The next post that I am about to put up in a few days is going to be pictures of the restaurant we were at during the bombing. While in Uganda, I returned to take pictures and face the physical fear of the location. I did and it was quiet a chilling experience to say the least. 

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