Part of our 5 year Wrecked plan includes establishing partners to combat sex trafficking. This past week we’ve had a team traveling across the world on a vision trip to see what opportunities might be available for us to partner … Continue reading
“And suddenly there came from heaven a noise like a violent rushing wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting.” Acts 2:2 On the final evening of our time in Haiti we experienced what would be recognized … Continue reading
A few weeks ago, my husband and I traveled to North Africa with the Manuel’s and Brian Zimmerman. This week, my mom returned from her second jaunt to Haiti with the Long Hollow Women. Both trips were full of relationships. … Continue reading
How many times have you told someone your story? Sharing mine is a relatively new thing for me to do, considering I was 20 years old before I discovered the freedom and the joy it brings. When I left for … Continue reading
I will forever remember that call I received from my son’s Sunday School teacher….”Mrs. Davis, I am not sure if you are aware of the fact that your son put a large sum of money in the offering toward the … Continue reading
2 Corinthians 4:5-6: “For what we proclaim is not ourselves, but Jesus Christ as Lord, with ourselves as your servants for Jesus’ sake. For God who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” has shone in our hearts to give … Continue reading
It’s often used as an adjective, as in worship service, worship music, or worship center. It’s also sometimes used as a noun: My boss gives excessive worship to his business.
I like it best as a verb. It seems to me that in its truest form, worship is action. It’s our humble engagement with and grateful connection to the God of the universe through our spirits, with our mouths, and in our minds.
Because He created us and desires a relationship with us through the blood sacrifice of His Son, Jesus, He alone is worthy of our praise, adoration, love and lives. That fact alone should move us—move us to sing, to share the gospel, to minister to and encourage others.
Romans 12:1 says, “Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God—this is your spiritual act of worship.”
The term worship wars has been used in the past few years to describe the debate over worship styles. It just seems wrong that those two words should ever be put together in a sentence. Whether you like traditional hymns or contemporary-style music, whether you think you can sing or not—if you have been saved by the blood of Christ, you have a song to sing and worship should not only be on your lips, but moving in and through you as you become the hands and feet of Jesus to others.
I recently went on one of our church’s trips to Haiti and was so incredibly moved. Their worship was palpable, visible, tangible. For an hour, they sang. Sometimes they stood. Sometimes they sat. Sometimes they raised their hands. Sometimes they swayed to the music.
I wept at the privilege of worshiping with them, of seeing their genuine joy! I couldn’t help but be convicted by their expression of sincere gratitude. These people have so little in areas most of us would describe as absolute necessities.
Yet, despite the fact that they have virtually nothing, they have everything. They have Jesus, and He’s enough. He’s ALL they need. And they reflect that—in their mouths, in their countenance, in their expression of adoration to the One who gave it all.
During Jesus’ triumphal entry into Jerusalem before Passover, the Pharisees asked Him to rebuke His crowd of followers to be quiet.
Jesus answered, “I tell you, if they kept quiet, the stones would do it for them, shouting praise.” (Luke 19:40)
Forbid it that we be so neglectful or unmoved in our worship that an inanimate object would be commanded to do it in our place.
So, I ask you, what does your worship look like? Do you stand there with your lips closed, hands crossed, mind elsewhere? Or do you focus on Him and allow His Spirit to speak to you and connect you with the Creator of the universe who loves you beyond comprehension? It doesn’t matter whether you raise your hands, or if you can carry a tune in a bucket. What matters is that you engage with Him and WORSHIP!
He’s the only object, the only focus–just Him. He’s an audience of One.
On a recent trip to Haiti, I was struck—not most by what vast differences there were between me and the people I met, but all that I had in common with these precious folks.
Obviously, we live in very different places. Though my family would be considered mostly middle class in this country, I was incredibly wealthy compared to those I encountered. I’m Caucasian; they’re dark skinned. I have a college degree. Most of them hardly have any type of formal education.
The differences are vast, no doubt.
But…we are a LOT alike!
What do we have in common? Sin. Death. The transforming power of the gospel, of human touch, of a smile. The language of music. The joy of knowing Jesus.
We were challenged to not look on the Haitians with pity, but with the knowledge that the ground is level at the foot of the cross.
“Thank You, Lord, for the privilege of seeing You at work in the lives of people everywhere and the reminder that Your love, grace, and mercy are for everyone, everywhere!”
I’ve traveled internationally on several occasions, but this trip put new meaning to international travel! On the way over, we traveled for forty-two hours before we reached our destination. We left Saturday, May 26th and got to Mbira, Uganda at 3:00 am on Monday, May 28th. Uganda is eight hours ahead of Nashville time, so needless to say it took our body clock awhile to catch up!
After arriving at the Mbira orphanage, you can only imagine how tired we were, but there was work to do before we slept! It took about an hour to get our cots set up and our living quarters in order before we were able to lay down for some rest. The following is a day-by-day journal of what we experienced:
Spent the day getting acclimated. We slept in Monday morning and had an orientation that afternoon with Tony Applegate, the missionary who was our host for the week. We ate all of our evening meals with the Applegates. After dinner each evening, the ladies went to the girl’s home for devotions, and the guys went to the boy’s home. We all sat on the floor with a small lantern in the middle that provided light. My favorite part of devotion was hearing them sing! I could listen to them all night.
We had the world’s longest VBS at Mbira. It lasted seven hours and was such a fun day! There was laughter and smiles everywhere. We did crafts, recreation and worship. The girls were extremely competitive! They also picked up the games faster!
We loaded into two vans and went off-roading! The goal was to visit ten Jajas, the name affectionately given to widows. At each stop we gave them bags with sugar and soap. The joy and excitement on their faces was worth the effort. Some shouted, some danced but all were thrilled with the gift. Continue reading
A flame was recently re-ignited in my soul. This little flitter of light has shed sparks and spread further on the canvas of my heart.
It’s the flame to learn.
And this flame is quickly turning into a blazing fire! I’ve realized that the more I know about the Word of God, the character of God, the heart of God and the purpose of the people of God, the more my heart becomes His and I understand the compassion of Jesus. If you ever had a glimpse of the compassion of Jesus, or felt this pang on your heart, you’ve realized…it’s something that changes you.
Prepare your heart for something wonderfully challenging and extremely urgent that you are about to read. Get ready for a life-changer and a perspective-shifter as we journey to the heart of Jesus (Matthew 9:38-38):
“Seeing the people, He felt compassion for them, because they were distressed and dispirited like sheep without a shepherd.
Then He said to His disciples, ‘The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few. Therefore beseech the Lord of the harvest to send out workers into His harvest.”
Did you get that? Jesus felt compassion for the people. In the Greek, “compassion” means to be moved to the depths of one’s soul where love and pity abides. This movement isn’t just a feeling, it’s followed by action. So here’s my top five for this Friday. A top five very dear to my heart. A top five, that when I first read it, my heart wept and my perspective on life completely shifted.
1. 6.87 billion people. This is how many other souls like you and me populate the earth. Oh how quickly we fall into the trap of living in a “me-centered” world when there are billions of others out there!
2. 2.84 billion people. (41.3%) Are unreached. There are NO believing Christians around these people. Of 16,500 unique people groups that are in the world, 6,900 are unreached with the Good News of Jesus Christ. Continue reading