Who would have thought that I could have an amazing worship experience at the gym? I love that Jesus will meet me anywhere! The last 2 days I went to the Y with Matt to walk on the treadmill. I brought my little mp3 player and thought it would be nice to listen to some music to help pass the time. I began with some Chris Tomlin, Phillips Craig and Dean, and Hillsong. That in itself was amazing. I listened to the Revelation Song, Jesus Messiah and Worthy is the Lamb and wondered if I raised my hands if people would look at me funny (or if I would fall off the treadmill!). But I kept feeling like I was in heaven just praising my Saviour!
Then I remembered that I had Steven Curtis Chapman's newest album on there so I switched to that. Wow.
A brief background on that album. A year and a half ago at a family celebration, one of the Chapman's daughters, Maria was tragically killed. The whole story is heartbreaking.
As I listened to the songs that Steven wrote out of this tragedy I was wiping away tears. The emotion is so raw but the words and his heart are absolutely a testimony to the character and love of God. I have followed his and his wife's blogs and know of the hurt and the grief they are experiencing, so to hear this testimony of how God is bringing them through is so neat.
It all comes at a time for me when I am remembering more than usual my own loss and my own grief. Sometimes the hardest part of remembering tragedy is the fear that more tragedy will strike. The thought that "I got through this once, I could never do it again."
I can't even say how encouraged I was by the words to the songs on Steven's album. The reminder and the TRUTH that one day ALL will be made right. This life is only a moment compared to eternity. I just read a couple of days ago that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that is to be revealed to us.
The Haiti situation has been on my heart as well. Do you want to know what helps me through the news of such tragedy? Instead of looking at the number of the dead or injured or the grieving, I remember and KNOW to be true that each one of those people were (are) not alone. God never lumps them all together. He was (is) with each individual offering comfort and hope in a way that only God can. For the mother whose son is trapped in a building- He is there. For the child who is now an orphan- He is there. I know that. He is there for me, He is there for the Chapmans, He is there for every Haitian and He is there for you.
Steven's reminder was that God's plan is to make it all right.
I can hear it in the distance
and it's not too far away
it's the music and the laughter
of a wedding and a feast
I can almost feel the hand of God
reaching for my face to wipe the tears away
You say it's time to make everything new
make it all new
this is our hope
this is a promise
but right now all I can say is, "Lord, how long?"
before You come and take away this aching
this night of weeping seems to have no end
but when the morning light breaks through
we'll open up our eyes and we will see
it's everything He said that it would be
and even better than we would believe
and He's counting down the days till He says, "Come with Me"
He'll wipe every tear from our eyes
and make everything new
just like He promised
And how does one get through a difficult time? These words reminded me of the need to consciously remember and lean on the truth of who God is and what He has promised.
You are faithful, yes, You are faithful
I will proclaim it to the world
I will declare it to my heart
I will sing it when the sun is shining
I will scream it in the dark
You are faithful, You are faithful
when You give and when You take away
even then still Your name is faithful
You are faithful
and with everything inside of me
I am choosing to believe
You are faithful.
Jesus met me at the YMCA on the treadmill. He wowed me with His presence, the awesome truth of how worthy He is to be praised. He answered my questions with promises and He calmed my heart with His peace. I have no idea what the remainder of my life on earth will bring. But I know and I WILL declare to the world and to my heart, whether in the sunshine or the dark.... HE is faithful!