Thursday, February 24, 2011

A Whirlwind of Whispers

Remember those 'whispers' that were mentioned in my last post? Have you heard any?

I have. Let the series begin....

***Disclaimer: This post is all over the place, people. When I used the word 'whirlwind' in the title - I did it for a reason. Seriously. Pull your hair back in a pony and hang on, sister.***

A couple of weeks ago - I wrote a post about Psalm 27:8.

When you said, "Seek My face," My heart said to You, "Your face, Lord, I will seek."

For weeks prior to my writing that post - practically everything I read or heard pertained to the 'eyes and face' of Jesus. Weird, huh? It's kind of a random topic. Need some examples? I would too if I were you...

* Jesus Culture sings a song called 'King of Glory' that I had recently discovered.
"Your face outshines the brightest son. 
Jesus You're glorious. You are so glorious. 
With eyes that blaze like burning fire. 
You are so glorious."

* I watched a video of Geoffrey Cohen - a Messianic Jew - giving his testimony. 
Cohen grew up in a Jewish home, went to Jewish schools, and didn't think very highly of Christians. In other words....He wasn't looking for Jesus. One day, he and his friends were walking down a street in Jerusalem when Cohen actually had an amazing encounter with Christ. In his words, "When you see Jesus, you just know it's Him." His story and testimony are beyond powerful. It would take too long to recount it all here...but Jesus appeared to Cohen and the thing that struck him about Jesus - was His eyes. The absolute love and compassion in His gaze.

Smith Wigglesworth (1859-1947)
I had heard about this man and his ministry before - but I had never read any of his writings. I still haven't, really - I plan to. However, I picked up one of his books at a store one night and sat down to glance through it. I just happened to turn to the part of the book where Wigglesworth shares an encounter he had with Jesus. He had been praying over a very ill woman - and He appeared to them both - right as she was miraculously healed. He experienced this many times. What did Wigglesworth have to say about Jesus? He said that Christ looks nothing like our paintings of Him - that nothing could portray His beauty. And then..he talked about Jesus' eyes - and the unbelievable compassion in them.

*My post.
Psalm 27:8 has always been one of my favorite verses. But I had never read the NKJV of it - until I wrote my post. As you read speaks of seeking the Lord's face. There it is a again. While I had been experiencing an uncanny number of things pointing to 'Jesus' face' - I kinda shrugged it all off as coincidence. Because unfortunately, that's usually how I roll. But right after I pushed the 'post' button on blogger - I went to Google Images to look for pictures of dandelions for my profile pic. When Images came up and I went to type 'dandelions' into the search bar - I almost fell out of my chair. You won't believe what was on my screen. Already typed into the search bar was: pictures of Jesus and below it was dozens and dozens of pictures of Jesus' face. His face. I've never googled that. My husband has never googled that. I don't think any cookies software could have done it. I think the Holy Spirit did. Even now when I go to Google Images...nothing automatically appears.
Here's the thing ....I was gonna end this post by saying that I wasn't sure what all of this meant. And that bothered me. I'm an all-or-nothing kind of girl. Before I write a blog post on something - I want the idea to be complete. So smack dab in the middle of writing I stopped and prayed that God would help me with it - that He would finish it out and show me what all this meant. 

And He did. HE DID! Read on...

While I was proofreading this post - I received an email from my precious friend Brooklyn. In it, she said that she was praying God would reveal Himself to me this week - and she also sent me a link to a blog she thought I would be interested in. When I checked out the blog - I almost fell out of my chair again. Click here. You just might fall out of yours, too.

Friends, right in the middle of writing a blog post on seeing Jesus' face - I get sent to this cool chick's blog post about seeing Jesus' face. And not only that - her post brought the whole thing full circle. You want to see Jesus' face? Look into the faces of the needy. The lost. The lonely. The desperate. The despaired. The orphaned. The widowed. The hungry. The homeless. Look into their eyes. You have something they need. Give it. You know Someone they may not. Introduce them. To Him. It's what we're called to, really.

So are you a little bit weird-ed out by all this? People seeing Jesus. This crazy woman saying the Holy Spirit Googled something on her computer. Yeah. I get that. I don't blame you. The people I come from don't really talk this way either. (Except for MeeMaw - she's a blog post all her own.) It freaks me out a little bit, too. But please hear this from a self-proclaimed skeptic.....

He's real. And He knows you. And He sees you. And He loves you. And He looks on you - and your past and your issues and all your junk - with crazy compassion...with the tender, mercy-filled affection only a sacrificial Savior can muster up. And while it sounds pretty out of this world to say that the Lord is in the face of the fallen...He is. And while it sounds over the top to say that He speaks to people today - He does.

But don't take my word for it - take His:

Jesus said....

for I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in; I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me. Then the righteous will answer Him, saying, 'Lord, when did we see You hungry and feed You, or thirsty and give You drink? When did we see You a stranger and take You in, or naked and clothe You? Or when did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You? And the King will answer and say to them, 'Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.' (Matthew 25: 35-40)


How does your hair look after getting caught up in the eternal tornado that is this blog post? Whew. You should see mine.

Lord, we praise you for revealing Yourself to us. Help us all to position ourselves in Your Word and in Your work. Give us compassion and love and grace for those who need it so much. Move us. Stir us up. And let us recognize how real and intimate You are with us all.
In Jesus, Amen 

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Look Around

I've been dealing with doubt. Just when I think I've got a firm foundation- I'm shaken. I've never cracked - but I've come close. Right before I rupture - I'm rescued. Every time.....

Last night, I felt like I was suppose to pick up my Max Lucado Devotional Bible. I haven't read this particular version in a while. It's a cool Bible. The devotionals littered throughout it totally rock. This Bible usually hangs out on a lamp stand in our living room. I hardly ever use this version anymore. But nevertheless - I felt prompted to pick it up.

I took it back to our bedroom, climbed up on our bed, and just flipped it open. The pages fell to a devotional about God's Presence. Take a gander at the last few lines:

...because we look for the bonfire, we miss the candle. Because we listen for the shout, we miss the whisper. But it is in burnished candles that God comes, and through whispered promises He speaks: 'When you doubt, look around; I am closer than you think.'

Interesting. Coincidence? Maybe. God? Probably.

Isn't it so true? Even the prompting I had to pick up the Bible - was in the form of a still, small whisper. I only heard it because I was desperate. My heart and mind void of faith - yet yearning for it - seems to be perfect grounds for God encounters. I've experienced it time and time again. I'd love to share some of these stories with you. I think I'll make this into a little bit of a series. I like the sound of that. A 'series'. It makes me feel like one of those serious bloggers or something.

Until my next post, may the Lord reveal Himself to you in new and fresh ways. That is my prayer for all of us. Keep your eyes peeled and your hearts open. He's there....a whole lot 'closer than you think'.

And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart. - Jeremiah 29:13

Monday, February 7, 2011

Come Away

Psalm 27:8 has long been one of my favorite verses.

My heart has heard you say, "Come and talk with me." And my heart responds, "Lord, I am coming." That's the New Living Translation.

The New King James Version puts it this way: When You said, "Seek My face," My heart said to You, "Your face, Lord, I will seek."

I don't even know what to say about this verse. It just echos my heart's cry. And it makes me want to grab my Bible, my journal, my prayer list,some worship weaknesses, worries, concerns, and sorrows...and take them all to a quiet corner somewhere and bask in the presence of the Lord. I'm beginning to understand that when I seek Him with my whole heart - I will find Him. You will, too.

Be encouraged and know that when I do finally find that quiet corner today - I'll be praying for you.