Sunday, September 27, 2009

Sweet Reminders

I am so thankful for the people in my life who constantly remind me to rest in Christ. The lesson has continued to crop up this week...every time I start to forget the lessons I have learned, something or someone reminds me. Last Sunday, our lesson in Endeavor was about abiding in Christ. These verses continued to come up this week in my times with the Lord and in the time with my friends:

John 15: 9-11 "As the Father love Me, I also have loved you; abide in My love. If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love, just as I have kept My Father's commandments and abide in His love. These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may remain in you, and that your joy may be full."

Psalms 46:10 "Be still and know that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in all the earth."

John 17:24 "Father, I want those you have given me to be with me where I am."

Christ's desire is to abide with me. Abiding, being much easier said than done. It means to rest in Christ, in who He is and what He has promised. When we are doing that, when we are completely surrendered, we remove ourselves from the equation and give the Lord so much more room to do amazing things in and through us.

This summer, the Lord really broke me and worked in my heart in the area of being still before Him. I am someone who has to constantly be moving, constantly have a purpose, constantly be doing something with my hands and my mind. My senior year of college was stressful. I left a very angry, bitter, hurting girl. While at Focus, I met with Mrs. Ogden, a woman in her eighties who helped to found the Institute for college students. She wanted to know my story (the classic question from this summer) and I told her about failing to get into grad school at Tech and some things I had faced over the last year. She got angry for me, she laughed with me, she sought to help me find direction...and then she prayed for me.

She told me to bow my head and listen to God while she prayed for me, and then I could tell her what God told me. I am so terrible at being still before the Lord and just listening. So I prayed one of the most honest prayers I have ever prayed. I told the Lord I needed Him to tell me something in the next couple minutes, I didn't care what, because I had to tell this lady something when the time was up. So I sat quietly and just tried to listen. Song lyrics started flooding my head, such as,

"When peace like a river attendeth my way, when sorrow like sea billows role, whatever my lot, Thou has taught me to say, it is well with my soul."

"Rest my soul in Christ alone, know His power in quietness and trust. When the oceans rise and thunders roll, I will soar with You above the storm. Father, you are King over the flood, and I will be still and know You are God."

"I will praise You in this storm."

I remember thinking, "Seriously, God? I really need You to tell me something." So I got quiet again and the same lyrics flooded my mind. It was then I knew what God was trying to teach me. This lesson to be still before Him will be a lifelong process for me, but I am thankful that the people in my life, especially those that God used to soften my heart from this summer, are there to remind me the lessons God has taught me when I lose sight of His peace and focus on the waves. He calms my storm. Rest in His promises to you today. Being still is a conscious practice. It is daily surrender!

Being still before Him,

Wednesday, September 23, 2009


When I was younger, my mom would sing that old hymn with us as a reminder to "count your blessings, name them one by one, count your many blessings, see what God has done." It is past time that I counted my blessings. It is so easy for me to be consumed by the many changes in my life that are challenging and scary. It is easy to focus on them and forget to look and see what God is doing in the small, seemingly insignificant, intimate moments of my life. But as I have challenged my sophomore Endeavor leaders that God has given me the daunting, blessed task of leading this year...I am looking to see how God is leading, teaching, molding, and blessing in the small moments....

-my family is amazing, they love the Lord and love one another, they encourage and push me

-my Alpha family and friends from Focus all over the country are my constant source of encouragement, love and prayer

-I have started the Truth project with an amazing group of older leaders from my college group...they are already challenging and blessing me with a support system here in Lubbock and greatly desire to see God transform them and our world

-new job starts tomorrow! I have the amazing opportunity to be a light to kids all over Lubbock who need Jesus as I start substitute teaching

-my roommate has been an answer to pray. It is a blessing to see her smile and see her sweet spirit for the Lord.

-God has seen fit to give me the task of leading the sophomore Endeavor leaders at FBC and teach them how to lead. They passion to reach freshmen is infectious, and I pray I can pass the role off to them to lead this college group in the coming years.

-I have been blessed with a like-mind and kindred Spirit in Courtney, a new friend with a beautiful heart for her husband, her friends and family, and God's people

-I have amazing friends who have stuck for years that constantly remind me of God's faithfulness and goodness to give me something of the familiar in my new stage of life

-I have begun a new study through the gospels and I truly cannot wait to see what God desires to teach me about His very nature and about holiness.

-I serve a God who never changes and He promises to walk with me every step through this process. He has given me peace and joy in place of the stress and is my constant companion even when I feel all alone.


Sunday, September 20, 2009

Splashes of Color

It has been absolutely crazy being a graduate and not being able to actually go to support my Red Raiders. However, my brother is playing for the Hardin Simmons Cowboys this year and every other weekend I have been making a three hour trek down to Abilene to cheer him on. The drive back has blessed my heart. Each time, I get to see the gorgeous masterpiece of God's sunset for the night. They are ALWAYS unique, with different shades and colors and spreads. But without fail, they are always breathtakingly beautiful. Living in west Texas has made me fall in love with sunsets. They speak to my heart, soften it, and bring peace. It is God's way of reminding me daily of His faithfulness, the care He takes with His creation, and His promise to heal, restore, and renew what has been broken that day. Enjoy some of my pics from the last couple weeks in West Texas of some gorgeous sunsets reminding me of God's beauty...

"But to you who fear My name the Sun of Righteousness shall arise with healing in His wings; and you shall go out like stall-fed calves." Malachi 4:2
"For from the rising of the sun, even to its going down, My name shall be great among the Gentiles; in every place incense shall be offered to My name, and a pure offering; for My name shall be great among the nations," says the Lord of Hosts. Malachi 1:11

"Praise Him, sun and moon; praise Him, all you stars of light!" Psalms 148:3
"For the Lord God is a sun and shield; the Lord will give grace and glory; no good thing will He withhold from those who walk uprightly." Psalms 84:11
"Those who are wise shall shine like the brightness of the sun, and those who turn many to righteousness like the stars forever and ever." Daniel 12:3

"Your sun shall no longer go down, nor shall your moon withdraw itself; for the Lord will be your everlasting light, and the days of your mourning shall be ended." Isaiah 60:13
"The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies show His handiwork...In them He has set a tabernacle for the sun, which is like a bridegroom coming out of his chamber, and rejoices like a strong man to run its race." Psalms 19:1, 4b-5
Basking in His light,

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Thought for the Day

Nahum 1:7 says, "The Lord is good, a STRONGHOLD in the day of trouble, and He knows those who trust in Him."

Lamentations 3:22-23 says, "Because of the Lord's great love we are not consumed, for His compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness."

Praying that you see the goodness of the Lord today. Find the beauty in the brokenness and cling to the God who is your stronghold!

Clinging to my Rock,

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Tearing Down Walls

Another post for the day....I must be in a writing mood. I won't lie...being back in Lubbock has been difficult. I am floundering, trying to find a place, trying to find a job, trying to find a group to encourage me and push me through this transition year and so far all have been fairly unsuccessful. This summer, as I have mentioned in previous posts, God really broke me. He tore down walls that I had built around myself. I think a lot of times people build walls as defense mechanisms. Walls exist to protect, to shield, to provide safety, security, a level of comfort. But they are detrimental to a very large extent. I had gotten to a place where I was willing to serve and give of myself to a point, but I wasn't willing to let anyone in. Actions can tell a lot about us but when we let people close, they learn even more and have the potential to hurt you even more. This summer, God really used the people at Focus to tear down those walls of bitterness, pride, defensiveness, self-pity, and distrust. Like I said, He broke me. It has been difficult being back in familiar territory without the people that helped soften my heart this summer and learning to operate without these walls. They aren't beneficial or Godly, and ultimately they hurt me and others who desire to be there for me as the Body of Christ should be.

I always think once God has shown me something, the lesson is learned and we can move on to the next one. But He has to continue to teach me or the lesson becomes something really cool that God showed me but not something I apply to my daily life. I am determined these walls stay torn down. God led me to this passage the other night in my quiet time and it really spoke to my heart. I am in no way saying that the following is theologically sound but it was a great analogy for what God desires to do in my life if I give Him an open, willing heart, knowing that it could come with pain, and trusting that He will give me strength and healing if that is what He asks of me:

In Joshua 5:13-6:27, the Lord tells Joshua that He wants him to go march around a city wall and the wall will fall down. That is a very basic summary, but bear with me. Earlier in Joshua 1, God tells Joshua to be strong and courageous, and He promises to give Joshua and the Israelites (God's chosen people) every place they set their feet. Then back in Joshua 5, God promises to give Jericho to the Israelites and tells Joshua the place that the Angel meets with Joshua is holy. OK, so not only does God say, "Hey I am giving you this land," but He makes it holy. Also, notice the progression: the Angel (who some say is Jesus) told Joshua what to do, Joshua told the people, and they did it without asking questions or complaining.

Now, the Bible specifically says that the walls of Jericho were fortified and guarding the city against the Israelites (that's what walls do, remember?). The Israelites walk around this wall for 7 days in a row and then on the 7th day, Joshua tells them to shout for the Lord is giving them the city. Their command was to destroy everything within the city, except that which was most precious (the jewels, gold objects, etc.) and that stuff would be added to the tabernacle of the Lord. So the people shout, the walls are flattened, the people destroy everything and keep the most precious things for the tabernacle of the Lord. Then, Joshua charges the people not to rebuild the city or its walls or they would be cursed. And then the last sentence of the chapter says that God was with Joshua.

Now here comes the real life application and why this convicted me so hard: The Jericho wall reminds me of the walls I build in my life to protect and defend me, sometimes to the point where I hinder the people of God from using their strengths to minister in my life. My life, like that ground Joshua stood on, is claimed for Christ, therefore my life is made holy because of who I serve. God comes into my life, like He did this summer, and reminds me that I am His, claimed for Him, and He tears down my walls, destroying all the bitterness, defensiveness, self-pity, insecurity, pride and keeps only the precious things in my life to add to His tabernacle. In other words He refashions what I have built and rescues me, leaving only what He sees...the beauty of Himself in my life. And then like the people of Israel, He charges me not rebuild the walls in my life that He has torn down because He desires to do something through my vulnerability and openness. And His ultimate promise is to be with me!!! How exciting is that? I hope it encourages your heart and I hope that you allow God to tear through the defenses you have mounted. He can't use something that is focused inward because of walls. He desires to give us freedom and a life spent being used by Him.

Leaning on His promises,


This past week, one of my great uncles died. This may not seem like a big deal...I wasn't close to him, but if you understood the Lynch family, you would understand the significance. The Lynchs are close...I have grown up knowing great aunts and uncles, second and third cousins as if they were first cousins and close aunts and uncles. We are a close knit family. And this is our third funeral in a year. My granddad and his two sisters are the last three of ten Lynch kids.

It is amazing how much I realize what this family has given and taught me. The legacy they have entrusted to me. They love one another despite mistakes, difficulties, lifestyles, etc. They are protective of their own. They show up en mass at graduations, weddings, and funerals...they share in joy, applauding personal victory and sharing in it as their own. They come together to celebrate lives, cry together (although they don't show emotion well) and support one another. I have learned family loyalty, strength, and love from them. Those who have divorced from the family are still considered family. Those who marry in may be given a hard time initially, but once they are in, there is no getting rid of them. I have gained strength from this family and a strong appreciation of family history and identity.

As we drove back from New Mexico to Lubbock, my two aunts, grandmother, and dad stopped to show me the places my grandparents had grown up on farms, where my great grandparents had grown old, where my grandmother played basketball in high school, the ugly and beautiful legacies of generations before (including the fact that my great granddad at his death a few years back was the oldest bootlegger to live in the US...his dad had been a preacher in the late 1800s early 1900s). They introduced me to Cherry Newtons (a combination of cherry flavoring, milk, and doesn't sound good but it isn't half bad) at a little run down restaurant. Then we drove to the war memorial.

Apparently many men in my family, including my great uncle who just passed away, and my granddad have served their country. Their names were written on huge slabs on this little West Texas war memorial honoring the men and now women from the area who have served. I learned one of my uncles was a POW in WW2. I was proud to be a part of this legacy and hear the stories of those gone before me.

It made me curious about the legacy I will leave. Many of the Lynchs are not Christians...they live life according to their own rules and I can't help but think that the legacies they are leaving are ones that will one day be forgotten. I pray that the legacy I leave will be one of eternal significance. A Nicole Nordeman song says it best, "I wanna leave a legacy, how will they remember me? Did I choose to love? I pointed to you. Wanna leave a mark on things, wanna bring an offering, child of mercy and grace who blessed Your name apologetically, to leave that kind of legacy."

I pray my legacy will be the ones I get to spend eternity with. I pray that I pour into the lives of my brothers and sisters in Christ and that I bring others into this eternal family that I belong to. What kind of legacy will you leave behind? Matthew 6:26 says, "But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal."

Leaving a legacy,

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

My Own Personal Psalms

Back in April 2008, I wrote what I thought would be lyrics, maybe they are poems, but ultimately they are my psalms to my Savior. Enjoy!

Fill Me Up

I call on the One
who turned water to wine,
loved the unlovable,
gave His life for mine,
called the unworthy
forgave all my sin
gives strength to the weak,
calmed raging winds.

Fill me up.
Let my life overflow
an out-pour of grace
running the race.
Fill me up

Committing to you,
I take up my cross,
willing to die
I will suffer the loss.
I call on your mercy,
I beg for your strength
to proclaim you boldly
and walk unashamed.

Fill me up.
Let my life overflow
an out-pour of grace
running the race,
fill me up.

Empty I come,
a willing vessel.
Clay for the Potter,
it's all I can offer,
Fill me up.


Searching so long
a fear deep inside
a trunk full of baggage
and a lifetime of pride.
But a voice gently calls me,
He whispers my name,
a promise of peace
and relief from my shame.

Run to the cross
to the One who can save you
who died for the lost.
Arms always waiting to welcome me home,
Run to the cross.

Casting my burdens down
I fall at His feet
capture my heart
make my life complete.
To know and be known
is the cry of my soul.
To glorify the Lord of Lords,
my purpose, my goal.

Run to the cross
to the One who can save you
who died for the lost.
Arms always waiting to welcome me home
Run to the cross.

Healer of broken hearts
Father, my friend
Creator and God of all,
the One with no end
My Savior, Redeemer
my friend and my Lord
tearing my walls down
I fall at your throne.
Run to the cross.