Posts from the “Prose” Category

My Beloved City

Posted on 29/08/2017

prayingforhoustonMy heart is aching for this city I call home. I left for two years, fell in love all over again and couldn’t wait to be back home! I must’ve danced my happiest dance the minute my plane landed a year ago, for good. There was and will never be a place like home; like Houston. I longed to be home where my heart was, the city that welcomed me and my family more than 19 years ago. We arrived in Houston just as a tornado touched down and I was terrified. Almost asked my parents if we could go back… but I soon discovered why so many immigrants like my family had come to call this beautiful city their own. It’s full of color, culture, love and a whole lot of heart. Houston is family.

Houstonians are not only hospitable but compassionate folks. We are capable of doing anything for those we call our own. If you’re a Houstonian, you’re fam. And we’ve got resilience to face any trial, together! Never mind what they say about our crazy driving and awful traffic, we’re still got that Southern charm through it all.

So when a persistent and pesky hurricane, terrifying tornadoes (and daunting warnings/watches), and more than 900 million gallons of water rushes our streets and floods the homes, businesses and hospitals, we’ve got the grit to make it through this. Thank you to the courageous and selfless volunteers, rescue workers and citizens who give of themselves for their neighbors. Good Samaritans that you are, your blessing will come in throes! And Houston, we will make it through. Slowly perhaps, but surely.

God help us all.

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Day 5: Delight

Posted on 10/08/2016

For weeks now, there’s a song that has been stuck on repeat in my heart. It’s a song by Caedmon’s Call titled ‘You Created.’ Below are the lyrics, words that strike my heart every time I play it.

Who is like unto the Lord, our God
Who dwelleth on high, who dwelleth on high
Who is like unto the Lord, our God
Who dwelleth on high, who dwelleth on high

You dwell in glory
The heavens are Your home
You began the story
And made Your beauty known

But You created nothing
That gives me more pleasure than You
And You won’t give me something
That gives me more pleasure than You

You hung the planets
In Your image You made man
I’m overcome and broken
At the wonders of Your hand

The stanza that speaks to me over and over is “You won’t give me something that gives me more pleasure than You.” What I take this to mean is that my greatest pleasure should be in God and that what He gives should point attention back to Him, the Giver of all things.

In his praise to God, King David marvels at the works of God’s hands.

Psalm 111:2-4, NIV

“Great are the works of the Lord; they are pondered by all who delight in them. Glorious and majestic are his deeds, and his righteousness endures forever. He has caused his wonders to be remembered; the Lord is gracious and compassionate.”

Oftentimes, I find myself marveling at the gift, delighting in it more than I do the giver. Imagine this; a child on Christmas Day receiving a gift he has longed for. He hugs the neck of his parents for a grand total of 30 seconds before he directs his full attention on the gift for hours… even days! But surprisingly, the parents are pleased with their child’s excitement and exuberant joy over the gift.

I believe God is pleased when I am grateful over the gifts and promises He gives me; however, if I spend days or weeks or months marveling over the gift that I start ignoring Him… wouldn’t that make me an ungrateful brat? Imagine the parents who graciously provided their son’s favorite toy but when they ask him to spend time with them and he ignores them, wouldn’t that be equivalent to a slap in the face?

There’s much I’m praying for; my dream job, my dream ministry, my dream husband… but I’m hesitant to ask; not because I don’t believe God will give it to me. I know that as His beloved, his plans for me “are good, to give me a future and a hope,” but what if I pay more attention to the great gifts that I forget about the gracious Giver?

Psalm 37:4-5, NIV

“Delight yourself in the Lord and he will give you the desires of your heart. Commit your way to the Lord; trust in him and he will do this: He will make your righteousness shine like the dawn, the justice of your cause like the noonday sun. Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him…”

There is a promise to those who delight themselves in the Lord God, committing themselves to Him. I grapple with the “desires of my heart” becoming the delight, rather than the reason to delight in Him. Again I’m reminded by the stanza from the song above. I soon realize that instead of hesitating over praying for my dream job and husband, I pray that my delight in God should be greater than my delight in his gifts.

Psalm 145:17-20, NIV

“The Lord is righteous in all his ways and loving toward all he has made. The Lord is near to all who call on him, to all who call on him in truth. He fulfills the desires of those who fear him; he hears their cry and saves them. The Lord watches over all who love him, but all the wicked he will destroy.”

Prayer: Father Lord, I thank You that You are near to those You call Beloved, and who call on You in truth. Thank You for Your unconditional love, even when I oftentimes get distracted by the gifts You give. I understand that when I truly delight in You the Giver, the desires of my heart are truly the desires You have placed there. I pray that I don’t lose sight of who You are or stop marveling at the works of Your hands. I pray that these desires will give me cause to marvel in You and not the gifts, in Jesus’ name. Amen.

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