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.

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!

Currently Crazy About: Worship Songs

Ah, Worship Wednesday. It is by far one of my favorite days and topics to blog about. I started a new series called “Currently Crazy About” a few weeks ago with some current makeup brands I have been loving. Today is a continuation of the same series but totally different topic!

Ya’ll know I am always finding new worship music that I want to share. There is just something about worship music that always hits home for me. I love worship and I am always in awe of how God can use people’s words to draw us into His presence. Here is what I’m crazy about:

Fall Afresh // Kari Jobe

Kari Jobe has a way with words… I pre-ordered her album “The Garden” that debuts Feb. 3rd and this song was automatically downloaded when I did. I am crazy about it! It is an anthem asking God to come and fall on us again. Asking God to open the heavens and fall on us, because there is nothing more powerful than His presence. I love when worship songs are prayers that our heart should utter, and this is just that.

“It’s the power of Your presence,
That changes us
Your glory all around us,
And we’re undone
You open up the Heavens
And fall afresh on us”

Let it Be Jesus // Christy Nockles 

In a world full of lies and chaos, our only cry should be, “let it be Jesus.” Jesus is the answer to all and the only thing we need. We need nothing apart from Him. I’ve always loved the phrase, “Jesus + Nothing = Everything” and this song is a verbal decree of that. I love the picture that this song paints…that we would call Jesus’ name before all other names. I could talk about this song all day, but I’ll continue on.

“For me to live is Christ
For me to live is Christ
God, I breathe Your name
Above everything
Let it be, let it be Jesus
Let it be, let it be Jesus”

This is Living (Acoustic) // Hillsong Young and Free

First off, I listed the acoustic version because I much prefer it…the simple guitar and vocals! Hillsong also has a wave of painting a beautiful picture with their woven words. This song is an example of what it looks like living for and in Christ. You don’t truly live until you live through Christ. I consider this song very poetic but such a perfectly written worship song that sums up what it looks like to finally be living.

“You take me higher than I’ve been before
It’s Your perfect love that sees me soar
God your freedom is an open door
You are everything I want and more”

Fighting for me // Warr Acres 

I’ve mentioned Warr Acres before, they are a local churches worship team that produces some amazing worship albums. This song is such a beautiful cry out to God that reminds us that God is never done fighting for us. In our world today, it is so comforting to know that God is always fighting for us even when those waves seem like they might overcome us. Honestly, this song just speaks for itself…it is so powerful I don’t have many words. Click the title and go listen for yourself!

“Buried beneath the waves, my heart was fading
Pulling me from the grave, Your love was waiting
Though I fight against You, You will never stop fighting for me
Relentlessly, Your love is chasing
Relentlessly…”

Good, Good Father // Housefires

I’m pretty sure I am talked about this song again, but I can’t help but bringing it up for this. I am crazy about this song. The simple words that are so deep and a great reminder that even though there is sin and bad things in this world there is but one good: our Heavenly Father. God is perfect in all of His ways and we need to remember that.

“You’re a good good father
It’s who you are, it’s who you are, it’s who you are
And I’m loved by you
It’s who I am, it’s who I am, it’s who I am”

What worship songs are you currently crazy about? I’d love to hear!

I am not alone

In a world full of people, it is still easy to feel alone. People let you down, family moves or passes away, you name it. Loneliness is a hard emotion to feel and sadly it happens so often. Do you ever feel alone? I have a song for your.

There is good news for those of us who have felt alone…even in our darkest moments and deepest valleys God is there. 

I am not alone
I am not alone
You will go before me
You will never leave me

I believe that there is something extremely comforting in knowing that the God of the universe, creator all things, the God who hears every prayer from every person…never leaves us. He walks before us in the valleys, He doesn’t leave us in the darkness, and He is celebrating with us on the mountains. 

We should never feel lonely because we never are. God is all we ever need and He is the one thing that will never disappoint us or leave us. The Bible talks about this throughout all the books.

Deuteronomy 31:8, The LORD himself goes before you and will be with you; He will never leave you nor forsake you.  “Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.”

Joshua 1:5, No one will be able to stand up against you all the days of your life. “As I was with Moses, so I will be with you; I will never leave you nor forsake you.”

Isaiah 41:17  “The poor and needy search for water, but there is none; their tongues are parched with thirst. But I the LORD will answer them; I, the God of Israel, will not forsake them.”

Hebrews 13:5  Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have, because God has said, “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.” 

I have this theory that when something is repeated throughout the Bible that God is trying to tell us something. It is apparently important enough to keep repeating so we understand. He longs for us to know that He is there!

In a chaotic world, He should be our constant. How comforting is it to know that He is waiting for us to call on Him. We turn to everything in this world but Jesus when He is the one thing that won’t let us down.

I love that He goes before us in those moments where the darkness seems to thick. He walks before us making the path straight and light. Hold onto Him today.

Rest in His arms knowing He doesn’t leave. Rest in His presence and thank Him for being constant.

From the archives: Redefine the Image

This weekend, I posted a picture of myself on my Instagram that was me without makeup enjoying the snow. It was by far my most “liked” and commented on photo to date. It reminded me of this post I shared a while back. This is still very dear to my heart and I wanted to share it again. We are beautiful people inside and out. The media defines a certain look of beauty but help me as I try to redefine that image.

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The other night, I was sitting in my bed about to head to sleep and God came and interrupted my life in a beautiful way. It was like I got hit in the head, God opened my eyes to this revolution I need to be spreading. I kept thinking these three words… REDEFINE THE IMAGE.

The way I see myself is horrible and I can all but guarantee I am not the only one who feels that way about themselves. Our society has taken the image of a successful and worthy woman and morphed it into something far from what Christ would claim as worthy. Size, relationship status, money, clothes, talent, and looks…all these things are what our society has given us as the image of a woman worthy of love, success, and encouragement.

I’m here to tell you something… we need to REDEFINE THAT IMAGE.  Our lives are not worthy because we are skinny, tall, rich, in a long term relationship, or anything else. Girls and women are constantly not living up to the standards that the world has presented for them and the standards they set for themselves because the image we long for is not the image Christ longs for us to be.

My heart cries for myself to see myself the way Christ sees me. He believes that I am beautiful, capable, worth the wait, and worthy of much more than I let myself believe. I long to look at myself and be thankful for the image I see, the image of Christ; but instead I am tied up on worldly aspects of my life-like my size and relationship status that reads single. I believe that God has incredible things in store for me and for you…we just need to understand that We are his beloved.

Psalm 18:19…”He rescued me because He delighted in me…”

Holy cow! Christ, the Savior of the world, delights in me. THAT is the image I want to see when I look at myself…not self-hate because of the world standards that I can never live up too.

Want to join me in my pursuit to REDEFINE THE IMAGE…I hope you do. Christ loves you more than anyone ever could. You are loved, wanted, worthy, and beautiful; these are the images we should see when we look at ourselves.

Jeremiah 31:3… “I have loved you with an everlasting love…”

God notices you. He wants you to see yourself through HIS eyes. In a bethel song called “you don’t miss a thing”—there’s a line that says, “In a crowd of ten thousand, you don’t miss a thing.” God is always there. And I don’t believe that he wants us to imagine these “perfect” people in society as the image that we should be…I believe that he longs for us to see himself when we look at ourselves.

Join me in this movement…as I daily try to REDEFINE THE IMAGE of what I should look and be like into what Christ sees when he sees me. Use #redefinetheimage in pictures, tweets, and posts!