Lyrics, Other

Lecrae Is Second

A music artist I have quoted many times in my posts is a Christian rapper named Lecrae. The Lord has blessed him with an ability to articulate the truth of His word, to explain it and expound upon it in a clear and beautiful way. I would recommend him to anyone searching for Christian music without shallow or nebulous lyrics. I have included a link to his testimony recorded on the I Am Second website. I have also included the lyrics and a link to one of his songs called Take Me As I Am. It had a profound impact upon me when I was a young believer. I pray that it will on the reader as well.

http://www.iamsecond.com/seconds/lecrae/

Take Me As I Am – http://grooveshark.com/#!/s/Take+Me+As+I+Am/4fdZxy?src=5 (If this doesn’t work, you can find this song on youtube or other websites)

Christ through faith
I talked to a cat the other day
And he was like;
“Man I really wanna come to Christ
But I gotta clean my life up first, get my sins together”
I told em: I used to think that way too
I thought I had to change myself before I could come to Christ
But Christ changed me
Let me tell you my story, it starts like this

[Verse One]
It’s 5:46 in the mornin’, tossin’ and turnin’
Chest burnin’, sermons in my head keep reocurrin’
Havin’ visions in my head of a kid
Cryin’ at the feet of the Father, for all the wrong things that he did
Now I’m sweatin’ in my sheets can’t sleep
My mind keeps tellin’ me I’m six feet deep
Don’t remind me, even though I’m still alive I can’t tell
The way I’m living my life I feel I’m going to hell
God they telling me I should accept you
That you had to leave the world, cause the world left you
Reason I can’t change, like a mystery to me
So I make believe there really is a heaven for a G
Even though they say you loved the world so much, you shed ya blood
God I feel I’m too messed up for love
They tell me come as I am but I smell like smoke
My whole lifes full of sin cause it’s all I know
The bible told me that you died for my sins
If I believe in Christ, it’ll save me from the end
But I’m scared to ask you, to save me my heart
So evil, I got thoughts, that’s full of hatred hurtin’ people
I thought at first I had to clean up my life
Now I’m hearin’ I just need to cling to the light
I’m ready to do it, but Lord I pray you understand
My life is a mess, will you take me as I am

[Chorus]
Will you take me as I am
I know the way I’m living is wrong
But I can’t change on my own, trying to make it alone
I wonder, how could you love me when my life so ugly
But you came down and died for me

Will you take me as I am
I know the way I’m living is wrong
But I can’t change on my own, trying to make it alone
I wonder, how could you love me when my life so ugly
But you came down and died for me
Will you take me as I am

[Verse Two]
I’m sick and tired of trying to me the man, my daddy never taught me to be
I’m grown up now, life ain’t what I thought it would be
I made many mistakes in my past I can’t fix
Now I’m staring at this crusifix tatted on my wrist
Is it true what they telling me, am I just crazy
Did ya bleed on the cross, for my sins to save me
But why would ya die for me
My whole life I’ve been working for Satan, while He fed lies to me
And now I’m hearing too much, trying to get a true touch
Of a love that can change me, I’m all screwed up
Figure Hell is what I deserve
But your word says we all fall short so I guess we all outta burn
Teach me I wanna learn
How you could save a wretch like me, before death says it’s my turn
I think I finally understand
No matter my past, you’ll still take me as I am

[Chorus]

[Verse Three]
My father had a few last words to give
I be telling people the reason to live
The reason to die, united with the King in the sky
This life is passing us by, I got no reason to lie
You’ll never give the world enough, they’ll hunger for more
They figure there ways are nuthin to the wonderous lord
More security than the man that left you
More love than the moms who kept you
He’ll always accept you
Be everything your supposed to
Let Christ rule ya heart, mind, body and soul cause He chose you
And if the world don’t know you
It don’t matter you’re Gods child and he’ll never disown you
Ya purpose on earth is far from worthless
That’s why ya glorified like ya life’s been purchased
And it don’t matter if the world don’t seen us
We still mean the world to Jesus

[Chorus]

[Talking]
Yeah, we’re saved by grace through faith
It’s not works
Ain’t nuthin you can do, ain’t nuthin I can do
That could get us this great salavation that we got man
It’s only Christ
So if you feel like you gotta clean yourself up
Before you can come to Him
Forget it
Just come to Him
He’ll take you as you are, and He’ll change YOU
From the inside, out.

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Puritan Prayers - The Valley of Vision

The Love of Jesus – The Valley of Vision

I have recently begun to read Puritan prayers from the collection, The Valley of Vision, and I have been greatly encouraged by them.  The Puritans who truly believed in Christ, those who had truly repented, lived mildly ascetic lifestyles, dedicated to glorifying God in thoughts and actions. This prayer in particular shook me to the very core, as it illustrated the beautiful love relationship I have with my Savior.  I desire to love Him so much more, and this prayer words that desire in a completely elegant way.

The Love of Jesus

 

O Father of Jesus,

Help me to approach thee with deepest reverence,

not with presumption,

not with servile fear, but with holy boldness.

Thou art  beyond the grasp of my understanding,

but not beyond that of my love.

Thou knowest that I love thee supremely,

for thou art supremely adorable, good, perfect.

 

My heart melts at the love of Jesus,

my brother, bone of my bone, flesh of my flesh,

married to me, dead for me, risen for me;

He is mine and I am His,

given to me as well as for me;

I am never so much mine as when I am His,

or so much lost to myself until lost in Him;

then I find my true manhood.

 

But my love is frost and cold, ice and snow;

Let His love warm me,

lighten my burden,

be my heaven;

May it be more revealed to me in all its influences

that my love to Him may be more fervent

and glowing;

Let the mighty tide of His everlasting love

cover the rocks of my sin and care;

Then let my spirit float above those things

which had else wrecked my life.

 

Make me fruitful by living to that love,

my character becoming more beautiful every day.

If traces of Christ’s love-artistry be upon me,

me He work on with His divine brush

until the complete image be obtained

and I be made a perfect copy of Him,

my Master.

 

O Lord Jesus, come to me,

O Divine Spirit, rest upon me,

O Holy Father, look on me in mercy,

for the sake of the well-beloved.

Yes, Father, perfect me into a perfect copy of Him, my Master.

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Holiday

Merry CHRISTmas!!!

Isaiah 9:6-7 “For a child will be born to us, a son will be given to us; and the government will rest on His shoulders and His name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace. There will be no end to the increase of His government or of peace, on the throne of David and over His kingdom, to establish it and uphold it with justice and righteousness from then on and forevermore. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will accomplish this.”

Christmas. The very utterance of this word carries hundreds of images to the mind at once. Lights, trees, decorations, candy, fudge(white chocolate in my case), love, friends, family, comfort, Santa, and Jesus are examples of the kinds of images that would scurry through one’s brain at this word. There are so many topics I could write about under the Christmas category that I will not be able to expound upon them all. I’ll fit as many as I can in this post though.

First off, the TRUE meaning of Christmas. Watch any secular children’s Christmas movie and you’ll get a different spin on it. “It’s about getting gifts from Santa for being good,” and “The true meaning of Christmas is giving stuff to people you love,” are the most common meanings that the culture projects. Looking in from the outside, one can see that for the typical family, Christmas is a holiday filled with discontentment and spawned from greed. People will become angered if they don’t like what they got or didn’t get as much as they wanted. One might feel jealousy over a friend who received something better than they. One could become greedy, hoarding as much as he can get, giving nothing in return. For an unbeliever, Christmas is a holiday rampant with sin. This should be in direct contrast with the conduct of a believer on this holiday, or really any time. For a follower of Christ, CHRISTmas is just that: a designated time that we offer up praise to God for the gift of His Son being sent into this world, as a perfect and holy sacrifice for our constant sin. Really this is nothing we shouldn’t already be doing everyday of the year, everyday of our lives. Jesus Christ has given us the greatest gift that only God could give; why should we only praise Him for it once a year? No, as already stated, we should do much the opposite!

So then, why should we participate in the traditions of our culture? Why should we give gifts? Is God not enough? If we have accepted the free gift of God of eternal life, we know He is enough. As I have said before, “no money, cars, relationships can compare to joy in Christ,” to borrow from the Christian rapper Lecrae. Nothing we can possibly desire on this earth can match up to who Christ is.

Psalm 73:25-26, 28 “Whom have I in heaven but You? And besides You, I desire nothing on earth. My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever. But as for me, the nearness of God is my good; I have made the Lord God my refuge, that I may tell of Your works.”

See, to become discontent would defeat the purpose of Christmas: praising God because HE is enough! Each of us has been blessed beyond measure, so to sin in greed and discontentment would be like sneering at the Mighty God saying, “You are not enough. I want more! Your sacrifice was nothing.” How could we? Our Eternal Father deserves our lives and more for the boundless love which He has for us! We give gifts as a reflection of the gift we have been given, and should be proclaiming Christ the whole time we do.

In light of the fact that we must have this praise for Christ all the time, I believe many Christians should change their perspective of the Christmas season. To paraphrase John MacArthur, “When the world throws you a pass, catch it.” For the unbeliever, Christmas is a time of sin. For the child of God, Christmas is a tool. A tool for the furtherance of the gospel, of the good news of Jesus Christ, so that more may come to know Him. Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying this is the only reason we celebrate Christmas. Far from it. We are finite humans, bound in weak flesh, and Christmas season serves to remind us of the gift of our Savior’s birth. We commemorate and celebrate the day of His birth at one time, together as a body.

I hope and pray that you will keep your focus on Christ throughout the Christmas season, throughout the year, and throughout your life.

Here is a little something I was shown on youtube. It’s a hilarious narrative of the birth of Christ by a British pastor. Enjoy!

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Psalms, The Word

Psalm 19

First I would like to apologize for the absence of posts upon this blog. The school year has been hard for me, so I have had almost no free time so far this year. I will try to be more diligent in my posting habits, even if all I can put up are song lyrics. With Christmas day fast approaching, one would think I would write a Christmas-themed post. I will try to before then, but no promises.

This is a psalm that has been so encouraging to me. It speaks of God’s ownership of the world, the beauty of His handiwork, and how it proclaims His name to all who desire to hear. How wonderful is the Word of God! It contains everything needed for a life in godliness. It restores, makes wise, rejoices, and warns us, as adduced by this passage. Nothing compares to the Word. “No money, cars, or relationships compare to joy in Christ,” to borrow the words of Lecrae. It’s easy to say these things, but the product will be found in our everyday lives. Do I really love the Word? If I do, the evidence will be clear to all those around me. I must examine myself daily, praying for the love the 119 psalmist had(and still has) for the Word. I would encourage the reader to do the same.

Psalm 19

1 The heavens are telling of the glory of God;
And their expanse is declaring the work of His hands.

2 Day to day pours forth speech,
And night to night reveals knowledge.

3 There is no speech, nor are there words;
Their voice is not heard.

4 Their line has gone out through all the earth,
And their utterances to the end of the world.
In them He has placed a tent for the sun,

5 Which is as a bridegroom coming out of his chamber;
It rejoices as a strong man to run his course.

6 Its rising is from one end of the heavens,
And its circuit to the other end of them;
And there is nothing hidden from its heat.

7 The law of the LORD is perfect, restoring the soul;
The testimony of the LORD is sure, making wise the simple.

8 The precepts of the LORD are right, rejoicing the heart;
The commandment of the LORD is pure, enlightening the eyes.

9 The fear of the LORD is clean, enduring forever;
The judgments of the LORD are true; they are righteous altogether.

10 They are more desirable than gold, yes, than much fine gold;
Sweeter also than honey and the drippings of the honeycomb.

11 Moreover, by them Your servant is warned;
In keeping them there is great reward.

12 Who can discern his errors? Acquit me of hidden faults.

13 Also keep back Your servant from presumptuous sins; 
Let them not rule over me;
Then I will be blameless,
And I shall be acquitted of great transgression.

14 Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart
Be acceptable in Your sight,
O LORD, my rock and my Redeemer.

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Struggles, The Word

Love As He Loves You. Forgive As He Forgives You.

To all of you who were wondering, the reason I haven’t made a post in a while is because I have been struggling. I’ve been struggling against the sin of the flesh, and it’s been harder than anything I have ever dealt with aside from when I first believed. Praise be to God, for He is strong when we are weak! The only way I can overcome these sins that infect my thoughts and actions is through Christ, as Colossians 1:13 and 14 say:

For He rescued us from the domain of darkness, and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.

Oh, His beloved, precious Son, how I long to look like Him! I thank and praise my Father for giving me such hard times, because when we suffer and overcome our sin through Him is when we tend to grow the most.

My struggle was with three sins in particular: jealousy, bitterness, and selfishness. It all starts with the way I view my friends. For the longest time, I have viewed the majority of my friends as the world views them: sources of pleasure, wanting all of their attention to feel good about myself, feeling important, or even loved, in an ungodly way. What was this view of my friends coming from? Selfishness. I did not pursue relationships with them so that they would be built up in Christ, or encouraged by me to follow Him with more of a passion. If I may pause from the story to challenge you. Examine your relationships, your friendships. Have you sought out friendships to encourage the other person in Christ? Or have you chased them because that other person made you feel good about yourself. What about your love relationships? Have you truly kept Christ at the center of that relationship, so that the one you love will look more like Christ in every aspect? Or have you pursued that person they made you feel loved, important, beautiful, or handsome, as the case may be. Please, examine closely. If looking more like Christ is not at the center of your relationship, and it’s goal is not the glory of God, then your friendship with that person at this moment has no eternal benefit. What matters in the end of all things? That, in your life, you glorified God in all things. So glorify Him in your friendships.

So, as an effect of me not having my friendships centered around the right thing, when someone else came along, who was another close friend of mine, and stole the spotlight from me, what do you think my reaction was? Jealousy. The point of my relationships with these people was my own pleasure, so when a friend came along who was more entertaining than me in almost every way, my reaction was jealousy. When he was there, my friends ignored me for him. He deprived me from feeling good about myself. I tried to change how I acted, so that I could get that prideful feeling from my friends again, but it didn’t work. I was still ignored, and that made me angry. I wasn’t content with Christ, with how He had made me, and I still desired that prideful feeling I got from my friends so much.

But, I was also committing another sin towards this person in response to past sins committed by him. Bitterness. I forgave him for what he did, with my lips, but hadn’t truly forgiven him in my heart. I felt a festering bitterness towards him for what he had done, and this made it hard for me to even be around him.

Through help from my parents and the careful examination of God’s Word, I saw my sin, and I saw what I needed to change in my actions and thoughts toward my friends. Love. I need to love them as Christ loves them. As Christ loves me. Forgiveness. I need to forgive them as Christ has forgiven me. If I am to be like Christ in everything, then I should not be hesitant to pour out forgiveness upon my friends. Christ forgave me of my vile sins against Him, an eternally holy God who loves me, by dying on a cross for my sins. So why should I be so hesitant to forgive a friend who has offended me? Here are some passages that have encouraged me, showed me my sin, and what I need to do to combat that sin. I have put off the sin, and now I put on Christ’s love, and forgiveness.

1 Corinthians 13:3-8a: 3 And if I give all my possessions to feed the poor, and if I surrender my body to be burned, but do not have love, it profits me nothing.4 Love is patient, love is kind and is not jealous; love does not brag and is not arrogant,5 does not act unbecomingly; it does not seek its own, is not provoked, does not take into account a wrong suffered,6 does not rejoice in unrighteousness, but rejoices in the truth; 7 bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. 8 Love never fails.

Romans 8:31-39 What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who is against us?32 He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him over for us all, how will He not also with Him freely give us all things?33 Who will bring a charge against God’s elect? God is the one who justifies;34 who is the one who condemns? Christ Jesus is He who died, yes, rather who was raised, who is at the right hand of God, who also intercedes for us.35 Who will separate us from the love of Christ? Will tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?

36 Just as it is written,

“For Your sake we are being put to death all day long; We were considered as sheep to be slaughtered.”

37 But in all these things we overwhelmingly conquer through Him who loved us.38 For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers,39 nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, will be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Colossians 3:12-14 12 So, as those who have been chosen of God, holy and beloved, put on a heart of compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience;13 bearing with one another, and forgiving each other, whoever has a complaint against anyone; just as the Lord forgave you, so also should you.14 Beyond all these things put on love, which is the perfect bond of unity.

I pray that you who are reading will examine yourself according to the Scripture here, and that you will be able to see through the Lord where you have failed, and where you have done well. If you have failed, repent, and pursue Christ’s righteousness, love, and forgiveness. If you have succeeded in these things, rejoice, give the glory to God, and continue to excel still more.

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