Friday, April 16, 2010

Sounds of Silence

The deafening sounds of silence
shakes my system
with volatility.
Fear and Insecurity
approach me
impishly and powerfully;
all I want to do
is cover my ears
but if I do,
that stinging sound of silence grows louder


I can’t escape


I must distract myself with noise
so I grab the remote
and turn on a life I don’t live,
I click on a computer
to search for friends
who aren’t as authentic
as the screen in front of me,
I flip open my wallet
and finger through an array
of faux Edens,
I press the button on my radio
and blast sounds of secularism
but even with all of this…


s i l e n c e


prevails.
It stalks like a jaguar in the night
for the perfect time to attack;
it skulks down low and waits.
I know of its existence,
I know it doesn’t want to devour me
but it does just the same.
Instead of becoming the hunter
I am the hunted.


I fall to my knees in defeat.


But, then,
I hear a Voice
a soundless whisper
like a gentle breeze
and suddenly I find myself
being led by quiet waters
and blanketed by peace


a different kind of silence.


No longer do I feel unsteady
in a silence that once haunted me.
Instead I welcome it with an open heart
and folded hands
because I know now
a sound of silence in my soul
resonates
a Shepherding Savior.


..AMY.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Taxes for Caesar

Then the Pharisees met together to plot how to trap Jesus into saying something for which he could be arrested. They sent some of their disciples, along with the supporters of Herod, to meet with him. “Teacher,” they said, “we know how honest you are. You teach the way of God truthfully. You are impartial and don’t play favorites. Now tell us what you think about this: Is it right to pay taxes to Caesar or not?”

But Jesus knew their evil motives. “You hypocrites!” he said. “Why are you trying to trap me? Here, show me the coin used for the tax.” When they handed him a Roman coin, he asked, “Whose picture and title are stamped on it?”

“Caesar’s,” they replied.

“Well, then,” he said, “give to Caesar what belongs to Caesar, and give to God what belongs to God.”

His reply amazed them, and they went away.


Matthew 22:15-22 (NLT)


All that we have belongs to God. It is not for us to keep or to cling to. Whether or not we pay taxes or receive a rebate, all of it belongs to God. What we do in obedience, in honesty and in honor to law, we do in obedience, honesty and honor to God. "That's also why you pay taxes—so that an orderly way of life can be maintained. Fulfill your obligations as a citizen. Pay your taxes, pay your bills, respect your leaders. Don't run up debts, except for the huge debt of love you owe each other" (Romans 13:6-8 [The Message]). Taxes to love--there's no comparison.


Saturday, April 10, 2010

Confident in Christ

"So do not throw away your confidence;
it will be richly rewarded."

Hebrews 10:35

It's so easy for us to throw away confidence because we feel so incompetent. The trust we need to have in an unseen God and an unseen future must be stronger and more complete than the trust we have in a visible world and a visible present. Often we throw away confidence because we are uncomfortable in our surroundings, in our present situations, and in our own bodies.

Comfort, confidence, and competence all come in our identity in Christ. We become less concerned with who we are not and more comfortable in who we are, "
I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well" (Psalm 139:14). The beauty of finding our identity in Christ is that He identifies with us. He knows what we are up against, "If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me first" (John 15:18). Therefore, do not throw away your confidence. Put it in Christ; it will be richly rewarded! Great is His victory! Great are His works! Praise God for the confidence we can have in Christ!


Sunday, April 4, 2010

HE IS RISEN!

A picture of the Garden Tomb in Jerusalem...


"'Don't be alarmed,' he said.
'You are looking for Jesus the Nazarene,
who was crucified.
He has risen! He is not here.
See the place where they laid him.'"

Mark 16:6