…surrounded part 2…

Clang!  Thud!  That’s the sound of a chisel doing its work.  This email has a lot of that sound in it as well…it may seem a bit scattered and disconnected but stick with it…please.  (I’ll try to keep it short.)

Last week in praying over this upcoming Sunday’s message and last week’s email…the two collided.  Forgiveness was the topic, but I struggled with the idea of preaching on forgiveness.  Then as I was thinking through the ways God’s Voice surrounds us (last week’s email), there was this…Clang…Thud.  Someone shared with me after the last forgiveness class that it was difficult and hurtful and created some issues for them.  That gave me pause – caused me to reflect on the class…and introduced fear.  As the chisel fell again, I realized I hadn’t taught the class since then.  Others had mentioned that working through past hurts was painful, not sure why this time it bothered me.  Then another clang sounded…pride was the reason.  I wanted everyone to see “MY” class as the best thing ever, healed everything and they worked through forgiving others with no issues…again because of “MY” class.  Thud!  Somewhere I had let that fear of failure shut down an area of ministry in my life; it was time to set that fear aside.  God used my thinking about His voice surrounding me, to bring me to that realization.

So…I thought I had this week’s email all “wrapped up”…tell the story, in more detail that I just shared.  God had other plans.

Last Friday, Julie and I went to a Loud Harp concert (band mentioned last week).  They had Latifah from Page CXVI joining in on the show.  She has a beautiful voice.  And then there was this one song….”Fast from, Feast On”.  (Clang).  Julie and I were talking about the music when we both (pretty much at the same time) commented on the impact of a line from the song…”Fast from discontentment, Feast on the joy that He brings”.   (Thud)

That song has stuck with both of us…(God’s voice surrounds us)…since then, and has had a noticeable impact on both our lives.

So…my thoughts went to this week’s email needs to be about the concert.  There were so many other “God moments” that night.  I, often, structure these emails in my head during my drive home or into work…get some vague idea of what/how to write.  Had the concert one mostly done in my head when I got to “Fast from, Feast on.”

Another verse started grabbing me as well…”Fast from the fear that haunts us, Feast on the power of his might”.  (Clang…Thud).  I’m nearly sure I heard an angelic choir as the lightbulb finally clicked.  God, through his Love and direction, had brought me through that very thing.  He brought my fear to my attention, through His power I’ve been able to “set it aside”…aka Fast from…letting His power prevail in my life (Feast on).  That all came together as I was contemplating how His voice surrounds me.  Several things…unrelated when using my limited view…used by God to bring me to a place I cast aside fears (Fast from) to hear Him clearer and can follow Him better (Feast on).  God is awesome!

At first glance…none of this may seem earth-shattering.  May not be to some, but it is life-changing.  Becoming more aware of His presence, more willing to cast aside selfish wants/desires/hurts.  God showing ((me how my flesh is weighing me down.  Time to look for some more stuff to fast from…self-indulgence, more fear, discontentment….my list has a few more items on it.  I’m expecting I’ll hear a few more clangs and thuds along the way.

(Song: Fast On, Feast From by Page CXVI)

 

Fast from the swelling darkness,
Feast on the power of his light
Fast from discontentment,
Feast on the joy that he brings

Sustainer, Protector, the Well of Life
My Helper, My comfort, the bread of life
is you
is you

Fast from the fear that haunts us,
Feast on the power of his might
Fast from the trap of judgment,
Feast on all that’s been redeemed

Sustainer, Protector, the Well of Life
My Helper, My comfort, the bread of life
is you
is you

From the sorrow’s shadow to perfect light!
From the darkness of our doubt to a cleansing white
From the sorrow’s shadow to perfect light
From the blindness of our sin to healing sight

Sustainer, Protector, the Well of Life
My Helper, My comfort, the bread of life
Sustainer, Protector, the Well of Life
My Helper, My comfort, the bread of life
is you
is you

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