What Can I Do But Praise You?

When I see the beauty of a sunset’s glory,
amazing artistry across the evening sky

When I feel the mystery of a distant galaxy
It awes and humbles me to be loved by a God so high

What can I do but thank You?
What can I do but give my life to You?
Hallelujah, hallelujah!
What can I do but praise You?
Everyday make everything I do a hallelujah!
A hallelujah, hallelujah!

When I hear the story of a God of mercy
Who shared humanity and suffered by our side

Of the cross they nailed You to, that could not hold You
Now You’re making all things new
by the power of Your risen life!

– Paul Baloche –

(originally posted on 8/23/10)

One Year

A year and two days ago I was hugging my family and friends goodbye in the Denver airport.

One year ago today, I had flown across the ocean, spent 12 hours in Germany, and was now landing in Uganda.

I took a deep breath as the wheels touched down on the runway.

I was in Africa.

 

I still, a year later, haven’t yet found words to describe the emotions that were going on inside of me. The emotions that are still running rampant in my heart.

God gave me a lot that day.

A burden in my heart.

 

A depth of love that I had never experienced for people I didn’t even know.

 

A true peace, even in the face of huge “unknowns”.

 

Glimpses of joy in the face of desperation, poverty, and desertion.

 

Visions of God’s heart that I still haven’t yet comprehended.

 

A deeper desire to know my God.

 

The reality of what it would truly mean to spill ones life for the glory of God.

 

And lots and lots of memories that are still working in my heart and life to draw me ever closer to God.

 

(as an aside: I’m not allowed to post direct pictures of the kids that I worked with while in Africa, but, believe me, if I was, you’d be completely inundated. Completely. Inundated.)

365 a year.

Pictures, that is. I mean, days, of course, too, but . . . I’m venturing on a get-better-with-your-camera-by-doing-a-photoshoot-every-day-with-a-specific-purpose-in-mind spree.

Follow my photographic journey over at my Tumblr!

I, of course, decide to start the day after I’ve been slammed into bed with the stomach flu and thus have just about the busiest day ever because of the catch-up work I have to do. But . . . what better day to start perfecting something than today?

A bowl of fresh peaches, coming right up!

*edit* Sorry, folks, about the links. They’ve been fixed now!

God Takes A Prayer

Faithful saint, on his knees
Imploring,
Fighting for the truth,
Storming the gates of hell.

Faithful saint, on his knees
Tells of his need to God
And God alone.
No one else knows.

Faithful saint, on his knees
Pleads with the King above.
He doesn’t know how
His prayer could be answered,
But he has utter faith
That it will.

Faithful saint, on his knees
Knows of a dire need–
To save a lost soul
From physical death and spiritual.
Perhaps a child.
An orphan who is dying.

God takes a prayer.
He hears a prayer
And stirs the heart of another
with the answer.

Someone across the nation
Who doesn’t even know
The saint upon his knees
Is even now feeling
The gentle nudging of Something Unknown.
The nudging of a Holy God
Who is answering a prayer.

God takes a prayer
And gives it to someone else.
Someone else who has the resources
To go themselves.
Or give.

A soul is burdened
With words to say
Right when they need to be said,
To someone they don’t even know.
“That was an answer to prayer!”
Comes the reply.

God takes a prayer
And orchestrates a happening.
To human eye
We can’t understand why–
But God is answering a prayer.

God takes a prayer
And answers it.

Faithful saint, on your knees,
God is answering your prayer.
Though you may never see
The outcome of your prayers,
Your Father in heaven
Has already taken your prayer
And begun to answer it.

God takes a prayer,
And a miracle occurs.
Circumstances are perfectly arranged
Outside our control.
Hearts are changed.

Sometimes we don’t understand
Why God would choose us
For a certain task,
Or why He would ask a certain thing of us–
God has taken a prayer
And is answering it.

God takes a prayer
And answers it.

(Keep in mind that anything like this that I may post is usually posted in its very raw form. I don’t write them–they write themselves . . . bear with me as I venture into a new road of expression. ;) )

The Untitled Poem

Do you hear the cry of my heart, God–
Do you hear its silent cry?
The ache which overwhelms threatens to unleash
The unshed tears that never reach the eye.

God Almighty
My King and Redeemer.
Endless swells of love and compassion,
Guidance and strength
From the fountain of His Spirit.
He is ever faithful!

Never quench this deep hunger,
This longing of soul.
To know You more deeply
To see You more clearly.
Release my tongue to tell
Of Your goodness, Your faithfulness.
Your promises unbreakable
To those who will stand.
Believe.

These desires, these passions.
Is this my heart or Yours, beating in me?
The sweetness I taste of You while
On this earth
Is but a taste of the majesty
I will behold when on heavenly
Plains I walk.
I glory in You, Jesus, King of glory!
The quiet sanctuary of devotion
leaves no thought of danger or risk
in the life surrendered to You.
Make me bold to approach
The formidable lair of the enemy.
With You at my side,
I will not fall.
Risk is not risk, but a calling;
To save the distressed, to reach out,
To love the unloved, to wash the feet of the saints.

I love you, Sweet Jesus.