Garment of Praise

Philippians 2:14-18

14 Do everything without grumbling or arguing, 15 so that you may become blameless and pure, “children of God without fault in a warped and crooked generation.”[c] Then you will shine among them like stars in the sky 16 as you hold firmly to the word of life. And then I will be able to boast on the day of Christ that I did not run or labor in vain. 17 But even if I am being poured out like a drink offering on the sacrifice and service coming from your faith, I am glad and rejoice with all of you. 18 So you too should be glad and rejoice with me.

This morning I was just sitting in my room, looking at my plan to see which part of the bible I had to read.  I was supposed to read Philippians 2:8, but somehow, I do not know how I ended up in Ephesians chapter 2 verse 8, and the verses after.  I started reading it and it really resonated with me.  It struck a chord deep in my soul, and so I decided that today I will focus on Ephesians 2:8-9, 17-18, and also mediate on Philippians – on how to worship God.  How to praise our Holy Father.  In fact I believe, that both passages are quite similar in some sense. It is interlinked.  Intertwined.

Often I wake up grumbling, and feeling sorry for myself. Self-pity. Self-obsessed. Worrying about my appearance.  Worrying about what others may think about me.  Low self-esteem, very low self-esteem, and self-hatred for the bad choices I made in my life.  Self-conscious. Thinking that people hate me, dislike me.    Is that a way to live life?  To grumble and to argue with one self? To hate one-self?  Is it not important what God thinks about me and not what the world thinks of me?  I am not of this world but I am part of God’s kingdom.  So in order to live according to God’s will I have to delve deeper into scripture, I have to sit still in his presence and actively seek to hear his word, his voice inside of me.  It comes to me in many different formats.  Two years ago, God’s voice came to me through the visions in my sleep.  Even now, I have vivid dreams, and I am slowly learning to discern between a God dream, and the devil’s dream and between my hearts desire.

It is a constant battle between the flesh and the spirit.  But let the spirit prevail.  Let the spirit win!  Dont succumb to your flesh.  Let the spirit win and guide you to make the decisions in your life.  Allow yourself to feel God’s presence.  Sit still in his presence.  Be still.  Instead of rushing around like a mad canine.  Take your time, look outside at the beauty of the world.  At God’s creation.  I am making a conscious effort not to grumble when I wake up in the morning because it will set the tone of the day… Instead I have made the decision to wear the garment of praise and worship my Lord.  My savior.  The only one that has the key to my soul and can unlock the deepest wounds in my heart (except maybe a few people have helped open my war torn heart).  I am making a conscious effort in talking to the Lord my God, my savior.  The one who knows every thought that goes through my head.  Scary really that he knows everything and yet oddly comforting.  I am not alone in the storming battles of my mind.  I am not alone for God is with me!

Ephesians 2:8-9, 17-18

8 For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— not by works, so that no one can boast. […] 17 He came and preached peace to you who were far away and peace to those who were near. 18 For through him we both have access to the Father by one Spirit.

I have been saved by the grace of God, countless of times. And the Lord knows I didnt deserve it, and yet I was saved.  I was rescued.  My 911 call was made and it arrived at my doorstep, carved a hole in my heart and God heard me in the darkness of my night and heard my anguish of deep heart ache.  I bring my broken heart to the Lord willingly, and I long to hear his voice so that I may be healed in his presence.  So that I may feel the love saturating through my inner cores.  Oh and how good it feels to be loved! To be appreciated.  To have hope.  The world would be a scary place if there was no hope.  But we have received hope freely, and we need to accept it readily, and not live in hopelessness, for we have hope in the cross.  Our hope is in the cross for Jesus died on the cross for our sins.  That is powerful! For God so loved the world that he gave his only son to die so that we may have eternal life. Wow, wow, wow…. Isnt that amazing?  I mean like wow?  The depth of God’s love runs deeper than the oceans floor, and the grand canyons in our lives.  It runs through our very veins, and so we have to accept it and live by faith.  Trust and obey God with all your heart and might.

I am blessed! I am loved! I am appreciated! I dont know about you.  But I know that I want to dive into God’s love even deeper, and learn more and more about God’s word.  And breathe it in to my very soul and hear his soft sweet voice telling me the errors of my ways, and teaching me to worship him with all my soul and all my strength.  I want to have a deep, deep relationship with God.  I want to be able to help people come to know God more and more.  I want to see a revival happen.  I want to be a part of this revival.  I want to see cataclysm occur.  I want to witness it all.  I want to be closer to God, and so I will deepen my relationship with the Lord, and I will lay my emotions and worries nakedly at the cross and God will help me sift through everything.  I only have to ask.  You only have to ask God to make a dwelling place in your heart and it will be well with your soul. It is well with your soul!  God is great. God is all powerful and magnificent and so I will keep living by his grace, and in his love, and I will make my shelter underneath his wings like eagles soar high.  I am alive in Christ.  My identity in Christ.  And I thank God every day for giving me the opportunity to know him more deeply and to be able to explore his word more closely.

I pray that it is well with you and that you will continue to seek his wisdom too. God bless you dear reader. May you have a blessed day, and put your hope in the Cross. May the Lord keep you save and help you with your endeavors wherever you are in this world. Let us live for Christ and not for ourselves! Let us go out and worship the Lord alone and together in fellowship.  Let us be beacons of light to the lost.  Hallelujah God.  Hallelujah.

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