Friday, December 23, 2011

A new Christmas song...

This month, God gave me another new song. It's been years since the last one, but this one is special to me because I specifically asked for it.

You see... last year, as new Christmas songs came out on the radio and old ones were resung and redone, I found myself wanting a new kind of Christmas song. I wanted one that didn't focus on the baby in the manger or what that Baby had come to do. I didn't want it to focus on angels or shepherds either. Rather, I wanted to sing one that told the story of what the One in the manger had already done before that Christmas morning.

Colossians 1:15-17 tells us who Jesus really is:
He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. For by Him all things were created, both in the heavens and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things have been created through Him and for Him. He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together.
That's a LOT of power. Seriously. One thing that I've gotten more revelation on this year has been that Jesus's power is the stuff of legends... the stuff that superheroes want and story writers try to give their heroes.

Read that verse again. It says that He literally is the power that is holding the earth in its orbit and the Milky Way galaxy together. He's the One with the power that made your heart beat its first beat when you were inside the womb. He's got power and authority over every king, prince, president, parliament, general, genius, CEO, and emperor that ever existed. So if you take every power that every hero in every story ever written has ever had and pull it all together in one person, you still wouldn't come close.

Jesus is the hero of the story that the Author of Life has penned. When authors write stories, they write the whole thing for the hero. They set up the forces of darkness and make them powerful, just to show how much the hero can overcome and prove that the hero is worthy of the name. As an author, if your hero looks weak, you just up the stakes against him, and then give him the skills to beat the villain anyway.

In a well-written story, everything that happens points, in some way or another, to the hero. And isn't that what that verse specifically says that God did? "All things are created for Him." History is literally His story.

But then, what did this hero do? Philippians 2:5-7 tells us how Jesus surrendered all that power:
...Christ Jesus, ...although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men.
And that is the truth that I wanted to sing about last year, for it awes me.

The thing is, though... I can't write songs. Literally. I can write these blogs (though I try to let the Holy Spirit write them). My day job is editing, so I can easily write smooth, grammatically correct paragraphs. I can polish a mediocre plot into relatively good prose. But I can't even write even a slightly-mediocre song.

And so I asked God to give me another, like He gave me the other songs years ago. But days and weeks went by, Christmas passed, and I heard no new song in my spirit.

This Christmas season, my worship leader asked if I wanted to sing a Christmas special. I told her I did, but I didn't know which one. In my spirit, I told God, "Lord, I know what I want to sing, but You haven't given me the song yet. Will You?"

Well... He started to give it to me that week. Just a few lines here and a few lines there. Over the span of three weeks, I kept listening and waiting, as I slowly heard line after line and they began to come together, along with the scriptures they were coming from.

And so today, as Christmas approaches, I am sharing the words and scriptures it references. I have no recording to share the melody, but I pray that God will whisper a melody to your spirit and that the Holy Spirit will reveal the truth of these words to you so that as Christmas dawns, you will enjoy a deeper revelation of just who the One in the manger was, what He surrendered just to be there, and why He did it all.

All He Was
© 2011 Kathleen Peters (since US copyright law doesn't recognize God's right to it)

Once outside of time began a story    (John 1:1)
It’s been told a thousand times and ways, or more
A virgin birthed and angels sang    (Is. 7:14; Luke 1:34; 2:13-14)
The wise men saw and shepherds came  (Matt. 2; Luke 2:15-16)
But the hero who lay within her arms
Had already made a sacrifice of love:    

He was the Maker of the universe    (Col. 1:16, John 1:3)
The Master of the stars     (Ps. 136:7-9)
The voice of endless power     (Gen. 1:3)
And everlasting love     (Jer. 31:3)
Before foundations of the world were laid      (Rev. 13:8)
Beyond the veil of time     (Ps. 90:2)
He knew the world would need a Savior’s touch      (Is. 9:2)
So He surrendered all He was.      (Phil 2:7)

He said that He revealed the face of God    (John 14:9)
That’s why the crowds responded to His power and love    (Matt. 4:25)
The sick were healed and blind could see   (Matt. 4:23; Matt. 15:31)
The lame made whole, possessed set free (Matt. 21:14; Mark 1:32)
Yet they took Him and nailed Him to a cross   (Matt. 27:22-31)
But He prevailed over death and conquered all!    (2 Tim. 1:10)

'Cause He's the Maker of the universe    (Col. 1:16, John 1:3)
The Master of the stars     (Ps. 136:7-9)
The voice of endless power     (Gen. 1:3)
And everlasting love     (Jer. 31:3)
Since the foundations of the world were laid
Beyond the bounds of time
He rules as everlasting Lord of all      (Phil. 2:9-10)
Yet He surrendered all He was…  (Luke 4:17-21)

         To bring good news to the afflicted     (Is. 61:1)
         And peace for the broken    (Is. 61:1)
         There’s freedom for captives     (Is. 61:1)
         The favor of God    (Is. 61:2)
         There’s joy now for mourning      (Is. 61:3)
         And strength for the weary      (Is. 61:3, 40:31)
         He’s made us the righteousness of God   (2 Cor. 5:21)

He's still the Maker of the universe    (Col. 1:16, John 1:3)
The Master of the stars     (Ps. 136:7-9)
The voice of endless power     (Gen. 1:3)
And everlasting love     (Jer. 31:3)
When the foundations of the world were laid     (Rev. 13:8)
The Father looked through time     (Is. 9:2-7)
He saw that you would need a Savior’s love...     (Rom. 7:24-25; Gal. 2:20)

         So Jesus came to be the Perfect One      (2 Cor. 5:21)
         What He did for you will always be enough…  (Rom. 8:1-4)
         Because He gave you all He was.     (1 Cor. 1:30)

For those of you who's a recording of it. Please forgive my shaking voice and fumbling fingers as both missed notes and chords. I pray that the words of the song minister to your heart.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Seeing into the spiritual...

I posted this on facebook a few days ago, but I want to share it here, too.

Do you ever wonder what you'd see, if you could see into the spiritual?

This is what happened at one of the many accidents on the bridges over 30 tonight.

I was headed toward the 598/30 bridge when I saw an oncoming car flash its lights (probably God), and a second later I realized that the bridge was probably icey (Probably also God) and I started slowing down. Then I prayed as I watched an oncoming pickup slide into my lane...and the truck in front of me hit it... and the oncoming pickup spin across the bridge. 10 seconds later, I was again praying as a second oncoming car slid across the bridge, narrowly missing the first truck...hitting the second. And I was still praying as the car spun toward my car, missing it by a few feet.

A few minutes later, I learned that there was a baby in the backseat where the last car had hit the first, but this infant was safe because the damage was minor (though it was still enough to send the car spinning).

A few minutes after that, I received the privilege of praying with a stranger who welcomed it and of telling her that I had been praying for her as she came across the bridge.

I wish I could see what all those prayers did. Did God only save my car by timing my crossing so I'd see the warning of the flashing lights? Or did He save my life? And did He orchestrate my timing so I was there, praying the other three cars through what could have been so much worse?

I believe He did, for God leaves nothing to chance...
Sponsor a Child in Jesus Name with Compassion