He’s in the waiting 


If you’ve been around W&W for a while, you’ll know I’ve been in about a year and a half long waiting season. Waiting for a job. Waiting for a husband. Waiting, waiting, waiting. I know this is something I speak of often, and for that I am sorry, but my goal with WW is to be honest and share what God is doing in my life. I have a feeling I’m not the only one waiting.

If I’m honest, this season has been lonely at times and there are moments when I feel like God has forgotten my requests and my future. I face interview after interview, and no after no. My student loans need to be paid and are a reminder of the degree that I paid for and have yet to use. It’s easy to begin to think that God has left me here to fend for myself. Satan loves to make us doubt Gods hand in our lives. He is quick to make us impatient, selfish, and bitter about the seasons that are rough or long.

As I listened to the song Take Courage by Bethel Music I was overcome with the truth of Gods promises. I was overwhelmed with His steadfast love to be with us in every season, including the waiting. It’s so easy to get so wrapped up in what we want for our lives and what we think we need that we forget that Gods plans and ways are higher. I might not want this season of waiting, but there’s a reason I am right where I am.

In those seasons of waiting, I think it is easy for us to feel abandoned and that God has sent us here as a punishment. If we are real with ourselves….we are angry about these seasons. But God is in the waiting. He is in the tears we cry, the prayers we shout, and the future we long for. I have to remind myself that every no might be keeping me from harm or a bad situation; maybe the no is leading me to an even greater yes. He will reveal all in His time. Just like the song says,

“Take courage my heart
Stay steadfast my soul
He’s in the waiting
He’s in the waiting
Hold onto your hope
As your triumph unfolds
He’s never failing
He’s never failing” 

God doesn’t promise our lives will be easy but He does promise eternal victory and that we will never be alone. He doesn’t promise that our problems will go away but He does promise that He will help us face them. This song is such an encouragement to me. It was like it was written just for me. Songs let us speak what our hearts and minds often cannot.

We must have courage and hope during all seasons. even the lonely ones. He is in the waiting, the trials, the fear, and all seasons. Don’t let Satan steal your hope and your joy. He will reveal your future when it is His right timing. He fulfills His promises we just have to hold on. He is faithful to finish what He started, we just have to have courage and patience.

Hold on friends, God is there.

5 songs for the mourning

I’m sure we have all heard about the tragedy that shook Manchester England. I am honestly just broken and overwhelmed at the thought of innocent lives being once again shed and taken.

I know it is hard to understand tragedies and death but I do know this: God is standing by us and holding us. My heart goes out to those poor families that have lost loved ones, friends that have lost friends, and people who had to witness death and carnage after such a fun night.

Today, instead of trying to put this sorrow into words…I am just going to share 5 songs that have brought me comfort in times of sorrow and mourning. God speaks through song and heartache. I pray that these songs will touch someone today and be just what you needed.

Blessings // Laura Story

“Cause what if your blessings come through rain drops
What if Your healing comes through tears
What if a thousand sleepless nights are what it takes to know You’re near
What if trials of this life are Your mercies in disguise”

Homesick // Mercy Me

“I close my eyes and I see your face
If home’s where my heart is then I’m out of place
Lord, won’t you give me strength to make it through somehow
I’ve never been more homesick than now”

Hold My Heart // Tenth Avenue North

“One tear in the dropping rain
One voice in a sea of pain
Could the Maker of the stars
Hear the sound of my breaking heart?

One life is all I am
Right now I can barely stand
If You’re everything You say You are
Would You come close and hold my heart?”

There Will be a Day // Jeremy Camp

“There will be a day with no more tears, no more pain, and no more fears
There will be a day when the burdens of this place,
Will be no more, we’ll see Jesus face to face
But until that day, we’ll hold on to you always”

Be Still my Soul (in You I rest) // Kari Jobe

“In You I rest, In You I found my hope.
In You I trust, You never let me go.
I place my life within Your hands alone.
Be still, my soul”
Today isn’t about finding the words but resting in His presence and I hope these songs will help.

From the archives // 5 Songs for the Weary

One thing I love about music and worship is the fact that songs allow us to be refreshed, encouraged, and sit in Gods presence for a little bit. On our most weary days, God is there; and one way He can encourage us is speaking to us through a song.

Today I’m sharing 5 songs for the weary. These are ones that I clinge to when I’m just worn out and in need of Jesus’ strong presence. Word are powerful and sometimes certain worship songs are just exactly the words you needed to hear in that moment, these are those songs for me. 

Impossible by Meredith Andrews 

I stumbled upon this song on accident one day (well, not an accident, Jesus lead me to it I’m sure!). This song is all about reminding us that it’s impossible for God to fail; impossible for Him not to go before us.

In a world that constantly fails and let’s us down, knowing God never does is a huge comfort. I don’t think we dwell on that thought enough. On our weariest days, God is there and walking with us. No matter if we’re in the valley or high on the mountain God is there is nothing sweeter than that. Listen here.

“It’s impossible for You to fail me
There’s not a day that You won’t go before me
Even when I’m at the end, I will not forget
It’s impossible for You to fail.” 

Find you on my knees by Kari Jobe 

Kari Jobe is known for writing worship music that is for the broken and the hurting; music that encourages and uplifts. Find you on my knees is a song about finding God on our darkest days and in the weakest moments.

The Bible says that the Lord is closest to those with broken hearts. This song is a proclamation that we will find God no matter where we are; and sometimes where we need to be is on our knees at our end with nothing except for a longing with God. This song is incredibly powerful and anointed- I could talk about it for days. Sometimes all we have to offer God is our brokenness and that exactly what He wants. Listen here.

“But I will find you in the place I’m in,
Find you when I’m at my end,
Find you when there’s nothing left of me to offer you except for brokenness.”

Come to the River by Housefires II

When we’re weary, what we need to do is come drink from the river of life. We need to soak up Gods presence and love. Our soul needs to be filled with His word and His love. He is always ready to give us fulfillment we just need to com and receive.

Come to the River is a call for us to come to the river and take in what Jesus offers; for us to taste and see. So that our soul can rejoice and not be weary. Listen here.

“Those who are weary, those who are needy
Come receive
Come to the river, come to the river
Taste and see.” 

Deeper by Meredith Andrews 

Deeper is an upbeat and exciting song that is a call to rejoice in every situation. Our valleys will make us lift our eyes up, our sorrows make our joy grow deeper, and our our giants are calling out the fighter inside of us.

Even when we are worn out we don’t give up because even at rock bottom God is working and moving in our lives. He’s taking us deeper and our love for Him grow deeper every trial and valley. This song makes me want to dance and praise because it has such encouraging words in it that my weary heart needs to hear. Listen here.

“Thrown down but not defeated
I’m worn out but not giving up
I’ve hit ground but even at rock bottom
I’m just getting started, yea, I’m just getting started.”

Fighting for Me by Warr Acres 

Restlessly. God is fighting for us relentlessly. Warr Acres writes such incredibly deep messages in their songs. This song is all about knowing that even when we feel the waves crash over us, Jesus is fighting for us. His love is chasing us.

When we are weary, it’s probably because  we’ve been trying to do and handle everything on our own.  But even in those moments when we get ourselves into those pits and swells: God never stops for fighting for us. There’s nothing more comforting. Listen here.

“Buried beneath the waves, my heart was fading                                                                 calling me from a grave, Your love was waiting                                                                 though I fight against You, You will never stop fighting for me. Relentlessly, Your love is chasing. “

What songs do you listen to when you are weary? I really encourage ya’ll to go listen to these!

OKC Bombing: Story of a Hero // From the Archives

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9:02. One minute changed Oklahoma. It’s a day we will never forget. April 19th will mark the 20th anniversary of the OKC Murrah Bombing. Like in any major tragedy, hero’s stepped up in Oklahoma’s greatest time of need. Fireman jumped into action, business offered services, and people gave their time. One of those was Allen Houck of OKC. He is now a retired fireman that still remembers the bombing like it was yesterday.

Allen said that his first thought was to “get the job done.” He knew that it was his duty to help in the recovery efforts. Allen, like so many, spent days working the bombing.

20 years later we still remember the ones we lost and the ones who scarified their time and energy to help.

Here is Allen’s story: https://soundcloud.com/hilaryparr2015/okc-bombing-story

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Gethsemane, Where Heaven Met Me 

“Knees to the earth that You breathed by Your word
As You watched the darkness come
Crushed by the weight of the cost as You prayed
Not my will but Yours be done
Gethsemane, where heaven met me
Redeemer, crowned in endless praise
My Savior, name above all names
King Jesus, take the highest place…
Oh the power of the cross
Oh the power of Your blood”
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The song Oh the Power by Kari Jobe has really been on my heart lately. Every time I sang or listened to this song, one particular phrase stood out to me. Gethsemane, where heaven met me. 
The song details the power of Jesus being on the cross and what He did. It begins by talking about when Jesus and the disciples went to the Garden of Gethsemane. The story is something I have heard all my life…but today this one phrase has really hit me.
In the Garden of Gethsemane, Jesus was anguished, broken, and asking God to take this cup from His hands…only if it were His will. Jesus, in a moment of complete distress, met with God. In enough distress to sweat blood, Jesus prayed even more earnestly the scripture says (Luke 22) and God met Him.
Luke 22:43 says, 43 And there appeared to him an angel from heaven, strengthening him.” This is where the phrase Gethsemane, where heaven met me led my heart. Thinking about Jesus in the garden and all He was facing. And in that moment…heaven met Him. It met Jesus in His anguish and distress. It met Him in the frantic prayers He called out. In the place that signified the beginning of the end of His life here on Earth, heaven met Him.
God sent His angels to comfort and assure His Son that He was there and in control. God was there when He needed Him…just like He is for us. The God that met Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane is the same God that meets us in our cars, on our beds, and in our most frantic and lonely moments.
As a worship leader, I saw glimpses of what heaven will be like as I watched crowds of people worshiping and calling on the name of Christ. And I have been met with heavens love and comfort many times in my life. I may not have seen an angel appear before me but I have felt God’s presence.
None of us have ever felt the amount of anguish Jesus felt in that moment in Gethsemane but we have had our own versions. And in those moments, have we allowed heaven to meet us?
This post has taken me weeks to finish; for some reason, this phrase has just been really influencing me and I’ve wanted to articulate it as best as I can. I want you to understand that God meets us where we are. He is not a distant God but a relational God.
In Gethsemane, with His death hours away, Jesus met with His Father. In a secluded garden where He would be betrayed, He cried out in pain and sorrow but also pleaded for GODS will alone. While Jesus prayed and felt God’s presence many different times and probably every moment of the day…on what would be His worst day, Heaven met Him.
Jesus fought to bring us those moments. Jesus died to allow us those moments where Heaven could meet us. Because of Jesus, we can now say that Heaven has met us if we are saved and one of Gods children.
That night in the Garden of Gethsemane, Heaven met Jesus. The angel appeared and strengthened Him. While I have never had an angel appear, I have had moments where Heaven met me, where God met me where I was and strengthened me. On my strongest days, on my weakest days, Heaven has met me. 
I am so thankful for my Gethsemane moments. For those moments when everything seems to be crumbling and falling but God meets us and strengthens us. It is all because the power of the cross and the power of Jesus’ blood. 
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Have you let heaven meet you where you are? Do you know the power of the cross and what this day represents? I pray that you have had those moments where heaven has met you and strengthened you. I pray that you take time to really ponder the days leading up to and the crucifixion today on Good Friday.
Let heaven meet you and strengthen you today.
Listen to the song HERE
 

Top Songs for Easter Sunday

Welcome to the Easter addition of Worship Wednesday! For the past two years I have shared my favorite top songs to sing on Easter Sunday and they have been, by far, my most searched posts so I knew I had to keep up the tradition this year as well. But if you want to check out my last two years posts, here they are! (These songs are still amazing)

 My 2015 Top Songs for Easter 

 My 2016 Top Songs for Easter 

It is always hard each year not to duplicate songs because there are always certain ones that would be perfect to worship with on Easter Sunday. Each year I attempt to research and find you all some new songs as well.

This year, Easter and what it means has really been on my mind. I have been excited to share these songs with you. Easter, to me, is about acknowledging and praising God for sending and resurrecting Jesus from the grave but also about just showing Him how thankful and forever grateful we are as sinful people for His sacrifice. A song doesn’t have to say the words Easter or resurrection to be great songs to use for Easter Sunday!

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*click on the song title to watch/listen to the song*

What a Beautiful Name It Is // Hillsong Worship 

“Death could not hold You
The veil tore before You
You silence the boast of sin and grave
The heavens are roaring
The praise of Your glory
For You are raised to life again”

I am falling in love with the song the more and more I listen to it. What a simple chorus that means so very much. God has no equal and His name should be praised. His name is beautiful and powerful and deserves our highest praises. The heavens should roar His praises! Death couldn’t hold Him and because of that…we can have eternal life! I love this song at any moment of the day, but I think it would be a beautiful praise to God on Easter Sunday as we thank Him for what He has done in our lives and allowed us to have eternal life with Him.

Oh the Power // Kari Jobe 

“Oh darkness, You have lost Your strength
O hell, you lost everything
King Jesus, take the highest place

Redeemer, crowned in endless praise
My Savior, name above all names
King Jesus, take the highest place.”

I have had this song on repeat since this album was released earlier this year. There will be a longer post about this song in particular coming on Friday, so I won’t discuss it too much right now. But there could not be a more perfect song for Easter Sunday. If you haven’t heard it, I highlight suggest you click the title and take a quick listen.  We have hope because of the power of the cross and the power of His blood. On the darkest day, God won and His light overcame the evil. Jesus took the highest place after taking the lowest which was where we belong.

Because He lives

“Because He lives, I can face tomorrow
Because He lives, all fear is gone
Because I know He holds the future
And life is worth the living, just because He lives.”

An oldie but a goodie in my book. This is one of my favorite hymns of all time. There is nothing more comforting than knowing that no matter what we face…we can face it because He lives and holds us up. What better way to praise His resurrection than singing about what we can accomplish because HE lives. I am so thankful that He holds the future and walks each step with me.

Impossible // Meredith Andrews 

“…You rose and left an empty tomb behind You
All to save, all to save

It’s impossible for You to fail me
There’s not a day that You won’t go before me
Even when I’m at the end, I will not forget
It’s impossible for You to fail
It’s impossible for You to fail.”

Meredith Andrews paints a beautiful picture of Jesus’ ministry, death, and resurrection in the first verse of this song. The whole song is about how it is impossible for God to fail. Even when Jesus died, it wasn’t a fail…it was the plan and Jesus knew what He was doing. He freely gave up His life for me and for you. I loved this song and knew it would be a perfect one for this post. It’s all about praising God for His power and His presence that never fails us.

War is Over // Bethel Worship 

“It is finished, it is done
The blood of Jesus overcomes
It is finished, He has won
He has won.”

This song is on the recent album release from Bethel and I just happened to stumble across it and thought it would be perfect for Easter Sunday. Because Jesus died and rose again, the war is over. He made a way for us. It should have been us on that cross but Jesus took our place and HE is our victory. I love the words of this song-such a declaration! He has won. We wouldn’t have hope if it weren’t for that sacrifice of Jesus. I am so thankful that HE fought the battle and still continues to fight our battles for us. Thank you Jesus for your blood that overcomes.

What songs will you be worshiping to on this Easter Sunday? Which of these were your favorite?? Let me know in the comments below!

Greater than circumstances 

Yesterday I woke up to the news that my parents car caught fire and burned on the side of a road, praise the Lord that my sister got out safely. But now we’re a car down.

The weeks before that my grandpa was in the hositpal again. But now he’s home and resting.

Yesterday I found out that a job I really wanted was filled and actually went to a person I knew who graduated after me. Happy for them, upsetting for me. But I know there’s a better job out there for me.

I say all this to say, God is FAR greater than any circumstances I could face. I wasn’t trying to complain, just show that it’s been a rough few weeks. I could let those circumstances keep me down. In fact, I struggled yesterday to be happy, to trust God, to be positive. My flesh fought to worry and be angry. But I’m thankful I’m surrounded by such a great and God fearing community. 

All my friends and family, even my blogging community, rallied around me to remind me how in control God really is in my life.  God is higher than me and He has such a beautiful plan for my life. We can’t let the valleys define us. We must praise Him in the mountains and the valleys.

I might not see the point to the trials life brings but there’s always a point. God is never not in control. 

If anyone would have had a reason to hate God and not trust His plans, it would have been Jesus. He was literally sent to die. But Jesus knew that God was greater than His suffering and what He would face. Jesus was sent to not only save us and die on that cross for us but to act as a guide for our lives. Today I’m choosing to trust like Jesus did. I’m choosing to take that leap of faith and continue to praise even when my heart might be heavy or the world throws me some punches.

God is greater than my circumstances 

God is greater than my fears 

God is greater than my problems 

God is greater than my mind can comprehend 

My God is greater. 

Are you trusting God with your circumstances? Or are you trying to let your flesh win. Do you truly know that He is greater? 

My prayer is to trust Him and remember that He is greater and the valleys don’t define me. We will find a car. My grandpa is home and relatively healthy. And I will find a job when it’s time. No circumstance I face is to big or to hard for God. He already has my life set out and planned and I just have to have faith. I must walk in faith even when I don’t understand. Faith requires a leap and I’m ready to take it. 

It’s not something I’ll never struggle with but I’m praying for peace and patience as I wait to see what God has in store for me.