I love the verses in the Bible that talk about a person like Mary, who collected good times and conversations to be pondered over later… Maybe in a time of distress.
Luke 2:19 But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart.
But I am not like Mary, I collect conversations without filter and when I am at a low ebb I dissect the negative comments that only allows further descent into the abyss.
Well, I used to be like that, but I serve an amazing Master, I became part of His family and He is teaching me to discern what is a valuable thing to keep and what can be cast out of the boat never to be retrieved.
This morning I was singing a song of worship and praise, just a few phrases that popped into my head as I was reading scripture, I moved between prayer and song. And then I stopped, remembering something, someone once said.
“There’s more to being a Christian than making up songs”
When that was said to me, over five years ago. I stopped. I stopped singing songs of praise from words that popped in my head and reverted to singing already written songs by proper songwriters with copyright. And that was okay, in corporate worship I always sing those songs. I don’t sit out a song I don’t theologically agree with because I figure God knows my heart and I sing them all. Although it is not difficult to spot the ones that speak directly to my relationship with God as I cry or smile, thinking of the treasures I have stored in my heart.
The mind can often play tricks and twist what is actually an encouragement into something dark. For example in October last year someone said to me:
“I love listening to you hum and sing to yourself and …”
At that time it made me stop once more, I was receiving criticism locally for the way I did certain things and this, instead of encouraging – it seemed to point out how different I was.
God made us all unique, but some of us – me, seem to be too unique for others to sometimes handle. Three years ago an accusation was hurled across my bow that made me question where I stood with God or was I intentionally seeking self-gratification through ministry. It made me stop volunteering in my role for a short season as I grappled with who was being glorified in my life.
Today as I reflected on these “treasures” I cast out the negative barb from long ago, I reassigned the other comment into the encouragement folder of my mind. And I was left with how wonderful it is to have my perspective changed by God.
Returning to the praise and worship phrases, I began to sing my song once more. A heartsong: from my heart to His, unashamedly singing to my Father and reflecting on the real treasures he has placed in my heart.
Praise God Who Creates and Saves
33 Sing to the Lord, you who do what is right;
honest people should praise him.
2 Praise the Lord on the harp;
make music for him on a ten-stringed lyre.
3 Sing a new song to him;
play well and joyfully.
4 God’s word is true,
and everything he does is right.
5 He loves what is right and fair;
the Lord’s love fills the earth.
6 The sky was made at the Lord’s command.
By the breath from his mouth, he made all the stars.
7 He gathered the water of the sea into a heap.
He made the great ocean stay in its place.
8 All the earth should worship the Lord;
the whole world should fear him.
9 He spoke, and it happened.
He commanded, and it appeared.
10 The Lord upsets the plans of nations;
he ruins all their plans.
11 But the Lord’s plans will stand forever;
his ideas will last from now on.
12 Happy is the nation whose God is the Lord,
the people he chose for his very own.
13 The Lord looks down from heaven
and sees every person.
14 From his throne he watches
all who live on earth.
15 He made their hearts
and understands everything they do.
16 No king is saved by his great army.
No warrior escapes by his great strength.
17 Horses can’t bring victory;
they can’t save by their strength.
18 But the Lord looks after those who fear him,
those who put their hope in his love.
19 He saves them from death
and spares their lives in times of hunger.
20 So our hope is in the Lord.
He is our help, our shield to protect us.
21 We rejoice in him,
because we trust his holy name.
22 Lord, show your love to us
as we put our hope in you.