Earlier this week, Ryan and I arrived to our comfy little home in Costa Rica after a 4-week furlough in the States visiting friends and family. We had a great time seeing people we hold dear to our hearts, breathing in the Bay Area breeze, and simply cherishing the moments we had while there. Now that we are back in the place that has become our home over the past four plus years, we have been spending time reflecting on all that God has done in our lives, and seeking His heart for what He longs to do this year.
As I woke up this morning, after a night of unsettling dreams, a pounding headache and twisted stomach, I decided to feed my soul with some quality, alone time with my Creator. As Ryan headed to church, I rubbed some lavender and coconut oil on my temples, turned on some United Pursuit, and crawled back into bed with my journal and Bible in hand.
I seem to always connect with God best through writing out my thoughts, desires, and preoccupations, so that’s exactly what I did. As I began to write, this song was playing through the speakers:
“I’ll lift my hands if my hands fail me
I’ll bend my knees if my knees grow weak
I’ll raise my voice and I’ll sing, I’ll sing
I know that you love me
So give me a song to sing
Give me a song to sing
Give me a song to sing
And I’ll sing it.”
As the words played on, it was almost as if God put a song on my heart… but one that had been there for quite awhile. My hands started moving the pen across the pages of my journal, and my soul simply poured out one of its deepest longings:
“Give us hearts that beat with Yours.
Fill us with Your Spirit and cleanse us from the inside out.
Let us walk unashamedly towards Your throne.
May our footsteps touch only the path that You’ve called us to.
May we not waste any of our time or efforts on a trail that You haven’t set out for us.
For where are we going if we aren’t walking with You?
Where will we end up if we don’t follow the path You’ve lit up for us?
For if we don’t stay on this journey, we’ll be without You in the end.
And without You there is no life, nor joy, nor freedom or truth.
But to be with You in the end is worth every step, every obstacle and storm.
For with You, there is peace.
These steps may not be easy, but they lead me to safety and love and truth.
And when I grow weary here on this path, You never cease to renew my strength, to refresh me with Your living water, to assure me that You’ll never leave, to remind me that You’re here.
And there’s nothing else I’d rather have, than Your presence.”
You see, once upon a time, I was lost. I thought I knew what was best for me, and I had everything planned out. But God in His amazing grace came and interfered with my plans. He showed me that my way wasn’t the best way, and that if I only went after what I wanted, I would find myself empty. The best thing that ever happened to me was the time that God gave my heart unrest. I had no peace in going forward with my own plan. I simply couldn’t go on knowing that there was something more!
I knew there was something greater than myself. I realized that surrendering my plans and moving towards the path that He created for me was going to bring the greatest joy and freedom I’d ever experienced. And that’s exactly what happened. I began to lay down all my longings, all my rights, all my pride. And He gave me a new life, a new heart, a new dream. I can’t say it’s been an easy journey, but it’s been better than anything I’ve ever known. The freedom that comes with giving everything up and wholeheartedly following the One who created every passion and desire inside of you is inexplicable. There’s nothing more freeing in the world, and it’s everlasting.
It’s my prayer. It’s the song I have to sing. It’s been given to all of us. A special journey with Him has been set out for each of us. For you it might start with befriending your neighbor, or quitting your job. It might mean forgiving that family member or old friend who hurt you. It might look like talking with the homeless guy you pass every day on your way to school, or praying for the lady at the front desk. It could be finally committing to adopting that child, or becoming a teacher. It might mean volunteering at the local food bank, or moving across the globe. Whatever it begins with, let it end with Him. With His promise of all that is good and righteous. His path will not fail you.
So give me a song to sing. Give me a song to sing. Give me a song to sing.
And I will sing it.