Sunday, May 22, 2011

love lifted me

This past Friday I struggled with some hard condemnation. The accuser was whispering in my ears all day long. "Look at what you've done." "You can't escape the shame." "You will never truly be accepted." "You haven't been punished enough." Condemnation, his same old tricks. And then Saturday came, and LOVE LIFTED ME.

My sweet husband had a surprise for me. He told me to pack for the weekend that we were going on an excursion. Saturday was an amazing day. The kids left for their grandparents and George and I went shopping. SHOPPING. We tried on clothes in the same dressing room, giggling like best friends. He told me to pick two outfits and I did, swooning like it was Christmas morning. Then we drove to Ashville, where we had lunch at the Olive Garden. We ordered a bottle of Red Wine, we only  had a glass, but the bottle looked so pretty sitting on our table in the decorative ice bucket.(We had them seal it and took it with us) 
Then... wait for it, here it comes.. we went to "The Cove" for the night. In my opinion there is no place like "The Cove." It's a little piece of heaven on earth. The presence of the living God dwells beautifully there, and we were staying for the night.

George had arranged for an evening at "The Cove" with Shaun Groves.  For George and I, Shaun was our first exposure to a Christian artist and Christian music. He came to the church we were attending nine years ago and played a concert, in the beginning of our faith walk. The lyrics to his songs and the message of his life spoke deeply to the brokenness that we were muddling through at the time. Several weeks later I gave birth to our son, and George brought me Shauns CD, wrapped sweetly in a package, to the hospital. Over the next several years I wore that CD out. I listened to it daily and memorized every song. The music brought deep healing to my hurting soul and many of the songs became my prayer. As I began to speak to women, sharing my testimony of grace and redemption, that CD came with me. The song "Should I Tell Them" became my prelude, my time of worship and praise, my prayer that God would let His light shine through all my dirtiness and sin. The ministry God was doing in Shaun was somehow being weaved into the ministry that He was doing in me.

Walking with You is not without hazards
Tripping's this traveler's curse
The price paid for falling is more than my stumble
In a world that is watching and waiting for worst

But I listened when you said to go
And I set out in spite of my fears
I brought truth mixed with my imperfections
And the question of what to say when I got here
And now that I'm here

Should I tell them that You are
The One who has made me
And saved me to set up a home there inside
Should I tell them that I am
A perfect example of all You can do with a life
What should I say to them, what if I'm failing them?
What should I tell them tonight?

Don't get me wrong
I'm thankful to be here
With this song to sing and a spotlight on me
But lately I'm wondering if You are mistaken
If You're seeing all of me there is to see

But on every face I detect
These same questions I've posed to you
Like do You speak through the imperfect
Or are we too dirty for Your light to get through
I want You're light to get through

'Cause they're thirsty but my cup is empty
Come and meet me here in this place
'Cause I'm unashamed, and I'm unprepared
And I'm just plain afraid

We had an incredible dinner followed by a concert last night, with 50 people present. It was sweet, intimate, and personal. And Shaun opened with "Should I Tell Them." Through out the concert Father was saying, "I'm NOT finished with you, there is NO room for condemnation." An act of deep surrender took place in my heart during the evening. "I have given God my sin and my hell, but have I really given Him my life?" Love was lifting me. 

So I lent my beloved CD to a friend of mine who was going through a hard time of her own, and like many things we lend out, it never returned. So we bought a new one last night and got it signed. 

Our time together was sweet, full of beauty, redemptive, healing, and filled with LOVE.
This morning, after breakfast, George and I took a hike down the mountain to the chapel there at the cove. It was a lovely morning. And we enjoyed each other and the presence of the Lord. We went to worship. We spent some quiet moments in the chapel all by ourselves. I read some scripture... 
"Since you have heard about Jesus and have learned the truth that comes from him, throw off your old sinful nature and your former way of life, which is corrupted by lust and deception. Instead, let the Spirit renew your thoughts and attitudes. Put on your new nature, created to be like God-- truly righteous and holy." Eph 4:21-24 
We had some praise and worship time with the help of my phone. and we prayed. What an amazing Sunday at church!!

Thank you my sweet husband for an amazing weekend at "The Cove." Thank you for loving me. 

I know the accuser will whisper in my ears again, and I also know that LOVE will lift me.

Love lifted me!
Love lifted me!
When nothing else could help,
Love lifted me!



Jenn said...

Oh girl! I have been thinking about you and praying for you since I read your post last week. I love that both Jesus and your husband are pursuing you in this time. I am so proud of you for being transparent in your trial. It would be so easy for you to hide and pretend like everything is just so great. God is continuing to weave a beautiful story in your life, and I am praying that your marriage comes out stronger than ever before on the other side of this refining fire.

And I love Shaun Groves. I am so glad y'all were able to see him and be at the Cove. What a sweet weekend.

kristin said...

Jenn, thank you for your sweet words! I can't begin to tell you how encouraging they are to me. Hope all is well with you and your beautiful family.

Rachel Storms said...

Hi Kristi! What a wonderful gift you've been given! The Cove looks absolutely gorgeous!! I love reading your blogs because I get to see the hand of God in your life. We all are guilty of sin, but thank God that Jesus bore the guilt and shame for us! You are an inspiration to all of us. Thank you for being so transparent. Love you!!

kristin said...

Hey Rachel! I miss you.. thank you for reading and being so encouraging here.

How are you and your family? I bet your girls are getting so big. Would love to see you sometime. would you send me your info to my email? I changed phone numbers so I don't know how to get in touch with you. Love you :)