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I Will Praise You Anyway

I would like to share with you a song I wrote this week, “I Will Praise You Anyway,”  When our prayers don’t get answered the way that we hope, we can sometimes be angry, confused, and maybe hurt – OR we can choose to trust that God’s “No,” answer is for a better reason that He knows about because, well, He is God. We can make the choice to praise Him anyway, because He is so worthy!
If I am being honest, I am struggling with some prayers that He has answered with a, “No,” lately and I am still working on not being angry, confused, and a little bit hurt…I’m trying to come around to what I know the truth is…He is really good at being God, and He knows what is best for us! 🙏

Lyrics:
That is not what I pictured. That is not what I prayed for. Your answers have left me confused.
I thought I was praying for Your will. I tried to trust You and be still. But I can’t stop my heart from feeling bruised.
You’re always there to wipe the tears away. And You supply the strength to say: I will praise You anyway.
So when I’m in the desert again, remind me Your faithfulness will never end. And when You answer, “No,” it’s because of Your love.
If I’m only praising You, when You do what I think You should do, You’re not getting the praise that You are worthy of.
You’re always there to wipe the tears away. And You supply the strength to say: I will praise You anyway.
I don’t want You to be a God that I can predict or fully comprehend, but God, if I am being honest I am near the very end of my human understanding of why You’ve allowed some things to happen…
But You are God, and I am not. And when I was young, I was taught that sometimes Your best plans include some pain. I will praise You anyway.
You’re always there to wipe the tears away. And You supply the strength to say: I will praise You anyway. I will praise You anyway.

Good Night, Little One

I’d like to share the lyrics to my most recent song. It is a lullabye: “Good Night, Little One.” Scroll to the bottom, and you’ll find the YouTube link! Yesterday, I sang it to my grandson before his nap. 😀 I would love for you to listen and let me know what you think!

Good night, Little One. It’s time to rest. Today’s been such fun. We sure are blessed. In the morning you’ll awake, ready for the day with a smile upon your face. We have memories to make. We have dreams to chase. Although I do not know how many stars are in the sky tonight, and I don’t know how God designed them to shine such perfect light, I sure know Jesus loves you more than you can imagine. He will forever and ever and ever. Sleep in peace. Sleep in peace. God will protect you through the night and keep you from harm. He’ll hold you close; He’ll hold you tight in His loving arms. Although I do not know how many stars are in the sky tonight, and I don’t know how God designed them to shine such perfect light, I sure know Jesus loves you more than you can imagine. He will forever and ever and ever. Sleep in peace. Sleep in peace. Little One, Little One, Little One, Little One, Little One.

Good Night, Little One

All We Will Ever Need

We search and we seek. We wander and we roam.
We look for satisfaction and a place that feels like home.

When our pursuits fall flat, we put the blame in the wrong places.
We continue to find momentary void-fillers for our heart’s empty spaces.

As our vices fail again, we move on to the next transgression.
If only we would listen for Jesus’ voice and realize He’s the answer to all of our questions.

Nothing we attempt to replace Him with brings us His promised rest.
He offers peace beyond compare and our righteous efforts He does bless.

No cheap thrill or miracle pill will fulfill us the way Jesus will.

No fleeting fame or video game will set our hearts aflame as much as the power of Jesus’ name.

No hidden sin or gambling win will ever provide us with lasting joy within.

No material thing or shiny bling will supply us with the contentment that Jesus can bring.

So let’s be honest as we approach Him with our struggles and our fears.
Tell Him we want to trust Him. He has always-listening ears.

Let’s ask Him to reveal His perfect character and to show us just how real He is.
To strengthen us and assure us that when we accept His love and forgiveness, we are forever His…

Jesus, thank You for persevering as You draw us nearer and nearer.
Take the appeal of the darkness away and cause our vision to be clearer.

Please open our hearts and eyes to our life’s purpose of glorifying Your name.
Extend to us forgiveness, mercy, and love as You take away our deep shame.

Everything You offer brings us genuine completion and peace.
You fill our emptiness with a perfect love that will never, ever cease.

Thank You for being our refuge in troubled times, and help us to follow wherever You lead.
Give us a heart to seek Your face and wisdom to realize You are all we will ever need.

Set Aside or Set Apart?

Thank you for stopping by…this blog post is on devotableapp.com today! 

Being set apart sometimes has the connotation of being set aside. But it does not have to mean loneliness or isolation. When we feel as if we are standing alone, it actually turns out to be a very appropriate time to remember that we are, in reality, never by ourselves! God is always by our side.

God commands us to be holy. Scriptures such as Leviticus 11:44-45 and 1 Peter 1:5-16 make it clear that being holy is not a gentle suggestion or an insignificant request. He instructs us in a straightforward manner to be holy because He is holy.

If we take God’s Word seriously, then it is a good time to…

Read the rest at:

https://devotableapp.com/daily-devotion-living-a-holy-life/

Dry Spells and Distractions

An extended length of time has passed since I have written a song. There have been phases in my life when new lyrics and new melodies seem to flow, but recently the songwriting well has been quite dry.
In all honesty, my spiritual life has been in a bit of a dry spell lately also. I do not think it is far-fetched to surmise there is a connection between feeling distant from God and the lack of a new tune bubbling up from my soul.
Throughout my life, the faith I have had in the fact that God loves me and has a plan for each and every one of us has not faltered. I stand on those facts, and since I was a little girl I have felt compelled to strive to live in a way that hopefully encourages others to believe more strongly in those truths as well.
However, lately I have struggled to align my feelings with my knowledge. I know He loves me and has that perfect plan…but I have not felt it as strongly or confidently as usual. Questions about being worthy of receiving answers to my prayers have flooded my soul. Questions of whether or not God is truly concerned about certain details of my life have blurred my vision. I have been distracted by my emotions.
Simply put, my eyes, my mind, and my heart have been focused on some difficult circumstances in my life instead of the One who is in control of those circumstances. Instead of the One in whom we can have confidence that “…in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” (Romans 8:28)
There is a verse I take great comfort in. The Message version of 1 John 3:20 says this: “For God is greater than our worried hearts and knows more about us than we do ourselves.” God is greater than our worried hearts. We can, and should, put stock in the promises of God rather than the emotions that a number of us may give too much credit to.
Just because we do not feel God’s presence does not mean He isn’t with us. The truth is He is omnipresent. Just because we do not feel God’s love during certain times of our lives does not mean He has suddenly stopped loving us. The truth is He so loved the world He saved it through His Son. Just because we do not feel like God is answering our prayers does not mean He is avoiding us or our pleas. The truth is often He is working behind the scenes or in a different manner than we expect, because His ways are higher than our ways.
Focusing on facts, the Father, and faith very recently brought a new song (literally and figuratively) to my heart. It has also begun to reenergize my relationship with Jesus and bring some sprinkles of joy to this dry spell. A dry spell that is sure to soon come to an end. I can feel it. : )
I hope that this encourages any of you currently experiencing a dry spell, to believe that focusing on facts, the Father, and faith will bring a new song to your heart too.
Psalm 40:3 says, “He put a new song in my mouth, a hymn of praise to our God. Many will see and fear the LORD and put their trust in him,” and that is precisely what my prayer is…that this new song might bless you. That it might cause someone to see the Lord, be in awe of Him, and strengthen their trust in Him.

 

Fix Your Eyes

Verse 1: You are trying to wait patiently in the middle of this mess. You are staring at the sadness and the struggle. You’ve forgotten God’s past faithfulness. Friend, your eyes are focused on temporary complications instead of our eternal God, who’s in control of every situation.
Chorus: Fix your eyes on your Father. He will never let you down. He works all things for our good as only God, our loving Father could. The burdens you’ve been asked to bear just simply don’t compare to the future that He has in store for you.
Verse 2: God knows just what your hurting heart needs. He calls on you to press on. Your faith will deepen. You’ll feel His strength, and He’ll refill you when it is gone. Friend, your eyes are focused on temporary complications instead of our eternal God, who’s in control of every situation. Chorus.
Bridge: Faith believes in what it cannot see – through every trial; every test. Faith believes in God’s sovereignty and that He knows what is best. Chorus. Fix your eyes on your Father.

Your Time to Shine

In the Sermon on the Mount found in chapters five, six, and seven of the book of Matthew, Jesus covers a lot of ground concerning what the believer’s life should look like. Name a topic, and chances are He included it. He spoke to His audience about everything from judging others, adultery, how the needy should be treated, to reasons not to worry. It is straight-to-the-point and easy to understand for anyone who desires to hear words directly from the mouth of Jesus.
While reading through this sermon recently, a phrase in Matthew 5:14 jumped out at me like never before: “You are the light of the world.” Jesus was telling a mountainside full of listeners that they were to illuminate the world by doing the good works they were led to do, and in turn, observers would give credit to God.
The Bible does not say we should attempt to be the light, that a valiant effort should be put toward being the light, or that being the light of the world is an admirable goal. Matthew 5 straight-up says we ARE the light of the world!
Being a light is a tall order, for sure. However, God does not give us a command and then abandon us as we try to fulfill it. If He gives us an instruction, we can rely on Him to equip us to do it and to be right by our side the whole time!
Our job is not to produce the light. Our mission is to shine HIS light wherever we can; to allow HIS light to shine through us. If we live in such a way that His light is visible in our actions and words, others will see His brilliance and be drawn to Him! Something we do or say can be the cause of someone else looking at Jesus in a more positive way, or desiring to be in closer relationship with Him. What an awesome opportunity that is!
Ephesians 5:8 advises us to walk as children of light. In John 8:12, Jesus Himself says, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.”
That aforementioned Light of the World freely gives His light to each and every one of us. Our choice is to reflect that light in our Christian walk or to keep it hidden.
As we look around this world, does it seem as if darkness is overtaking the light in some areas? If we have the Light of the World in our life, then we can strive to shine His light in those dark places. Shining His light in this world means more Jesus in this world! It’s your time to shine!

New Year, New Prayer

New Year’s prayer from a year ago. Renewing my commitment to pray this prayer for 2017!

gwenthielges.com

Typically, as the new year arrives, we spend time thinking about what we want to carry forward and what we want to leave behind. We think about the things that we want to ‘start anew.’

It’s a new year full of new opportunities. As I grow older, I grow more and more thankful that I serve a God that makes all things new. Every time we see a sunrise, we can see it as a magnificent reminder that His mercies are new every morning. (Lam. 3:22-23)

I recently read 2 Corinthians 5:14-17 with a new perspective: “For Christ’s love compels us, because we are convinced that One died for all, and therefore all died. And He died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for Him who died for them and was raised again.So from now on we regard no one…

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