Tag Archive: worship

I’m Undignified

Day 124 2 Samuel 5:11-6:23, 1 Chronicles 13-16

   There is a lot I could write about today.. but what I zeroed in on, likely because it was unfamiliar to me, was Michal, Saul’s daughter, watching from her window as David danced before the Ark as it was being brought into the city… and she despised him in her heart because he was being undignified in front of others.  She seemed particularly steamed that the slave women saw. David replied, “I will become even more undignified than this, and I will be humiliated in my own eyes.”  His dancing was for God and God alone and he it didn’t matter what others saw or thought.  Michal is a complicated woman… she was sadly a bit of a pawn promised to David then married off to another who seemed to really love her, at least he was terribly upset when later David came and claimed her  from her husband because she was originally promised to him.  But for David it seemed like more of a pride thing than real love… clearly Michal had little love for David.  So given the circumstances I’m hesitant to cast judgement on this situation, but the way she’s not just bitter about her circumstances but embarrassed by her husband’s love of God.. well that kind of stings me in a personal way.  Was anyone ever embarrassed by my love of God and how I showed it?  We worship so differently… but was my undignified nature before God ever just cause for embarrassment to someone else?  And more astonishing is my total lack of apathy if it ever was!  My outstretched arm, my tears, my dancing, my voice in worship is my offering to God, and God alone.  I can relate to David’s slightly angry response back to Michal… I WILL become even MORE undignified than this!! Watch out!


Desert Bloom of Unity

Day 122 Psalm 133

    I have  friend who during highschool presented an idea to me that has stuck with me my entire Christian walk… the image he proposed led us to come to two completely different conclusions about God, spirituality and our own lives. Yet  it has been a curious blessing in my life.

    My friend, one of these super smart kids in school who ran circles around me academically yet still found me interesting enough to chit-chat frequently on the phone, had decided to read the Bible in one sitting cover to cover.  The next day he called and explained to me why he was NOT going to be a Christian.  To date he still is a very vocal atheist, and still someone I consider a dear friend.  He said based on what he read that in heaven all we were going to do was worship God… worship worship worship. boring, boring, boring.  To him that was not a big selling point, so no point in believing in God, the bible, ect.  I’m sure his philosophy is slightly more developed than that, I take that back, I KNOW his philosophy of disbelief is MUCH more developed than that… but my point in telling this story isn’t so I could engage in apologetics.  His reasons are his own.  My point is this image of worship he planted in my head. It has stuck with me for almost 20 years and has been a curious blessing. 

      There are times when I am in worship standing by my siblings in Christ, thanking my Creator for His blessings and I think about those standing right next to me and those across the world whom I’ve worshiped with during my lifetime and I think about the Unity we experience through lifting God up in song and  then the idea of doing this all TOGETHER in heaven hits me and I am in awe at the thought.  I Love worship because I get a chance to draw close to God, to thank him in a unique primal way, but also because I’m doing it alongside others.  it is a profoundly liberating experience to worship God with others who are worshiping God.  I am not alone in loving my Savior!

   So what is the result of this experience?  What is the purpose? 

Psalm 133

   1 How good and pleasant it is
   when God’s people live together in unity!

   2 It is like precious oil poured on the head,
   running down on the beard,
running down on Aaron’s beard,
   down on the collar of his robe.
3 It is as if the dew of Hermon
   were falling on Mount Zion.
For there the LORD bestows his blessing,
   even life forevermore.

I actually put oil in my daughter’s hair.  Her hair is thirsty for it.  It turns her dry hair into soft moist ringlets.  But Aaron’s oil was that of anointing.  So when we draw together in unity it’s as if we are being anointed… but what does that mean?  I really got a lot out of verse 3.  I grew up in a desert.  Compared to Florida it’s dryness is profound, but once during an unusual season of consistent rain I came back to visit and was blown away at the change!  The desert, always parched, always dry came alive with plants.  The change was phenomenal and slightly spooky that such potential could be unlocked with just a little rain.   If God’s people lived in unity it’s as if the dew on Mount Hermon were falling on Mount Zion.  I’ve never experienced Unity with my adopted brothers and sisters in Christ quite like I do during worship… and the fruits of that experience can be profound.  But can it be extended into different aspects of our lives together.  I experience unity with those 105 members of my Facebook group who are reading the bible with me.  I experience unity with them in studying God’s word in our small groups.  I experience profound unity with them when I realize they are HERE for me during my time of turmoil like no one else is, with a depth of love that goes unmatched by others.  And while I’ve sat and enjoyed the experience of unity I’ve felt with others, I’ve never stopped to think what kind of impact could it have.  Lord,  May our unity bloom in this desert thirsty and waiting for the water of life.

Songs of Ascent

Day 110 Psalm 121, Psalm 123-125, Psalm 128-130

Upward movement, rising movement.. these are the words used to describe what ascent means in English.. I have yet to figure out what the Hebrew is and what it’s meaning is.  But I’m sure we have not missed the mark by much.  These songs of David have the ability to take you from one state of being and rise you to the next level.. How?  Through worship.  I’ve described in Desert Song how this has happened to me.  When reading this songs today I found that bits and pieces really spoke to me, I wanted to collect them and keep them for the day to console me, uplift me and help my spirit to ascend from is state of sorrow. 

Psalm 121:

1 I lift up my eyes to the mountains—
   where does my help come from?
2 My help comes from the LORD,
   the Maker of heaven and earth.

If the Lord had not been on my side during all that I have and am experiencing the raging waters really would have swept me away (My version of Psalm 124:1,5) and I believe that’s a testimony I need to share.  I know what I am experiencing is nothing compared to the writers of these Psalms and many others who are living through tough times. But I think having my life partner, my husband and best friend of 13 years telling me he is done qualifies as raging waters.  So when people comment, “Wow you seem to be doing really well,” I need to give credit where credit is due: If I didn’t have God through all this, I’d be a total mess.  SURE I hurt and mourn and cry.  But I am consoled by My Maker in a way that is indescribable.  IAM doing ok, and more than that I am GOING to be ok, because I have God.  There are no better times to fully comprehend this than when we are facing trials of such magnitude.  So there is a part of me that is grateful for the trial, because it draws me closer to my heavenly Father.  Where does my help come from?  My help comes from the Lord! Acknowledging that IS uplifting!

Desert Song

Day 108 Psalm 17, Psalm 35, Psalm 54, Psalm 63

If you’ve never been stuck in a third world country trying to navigate their judicial system and American Immigration I highly recommend bringing Hillsong United’s Desert song.. It was the balm that calmed my achy scared soul.. to be able to worship God while knee-deep in a pile of unknowns and veiled timelines was calming to me. I was worshiping God when I knew beyond a shadow of a doubt that I could do nothing but give up and give it all to God.  Compared to others’ international adoptions I am well aware that I am being melodramatic, but being there in the middle of all the stress we were often frustrated to tears.  I still experience PTSD symptoms just thinking about court.  When emotions began to reach the overwhelming stage I’d stop and slip on my headphones and start to worship God… suddenly I felt centered.  When reading Psalm 63 I was reminded of this time of uncertainty and the complete peace I found in God NOT myself or the empty promises of those working with me. 

      God got me through that trial, God will get me through my present Desert.  This one is less dramatic but it almost seems wider, bigger and scarier.  Divorce is the trial no bride ever wants to face… But in facing this I feel as though my worship has taken on new life, deeper meaning, and is having an ever-expanding impact on my life.  Half  the time time during worship I am crying, pouring over the words and meaning each and every one of them… My desert is directly responsible for the intensity of my thirst for God. So when David writes:

You, God, are my God,
   earnestly I seek you;
I thirst for you,
   my whole being longs for you,
in a dry and parched land
   where there is no water.

                                                                    I can relate to this deeply.

may the depths of my worship break free of its dependence on turmoil in my life… Lord I ask for the ability  to experience big worship during the good times, and the boring times, and all the in-between times.. not just the bad times.  Lord you deserve better… but for now, in this desert, I give thanks for what I have, I love You with desperation and I am in awe of how you sustain me.