Once upon a time

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Once upon a time I hated silence. The stillness of it was very uneasy. The eeriness that surrounded it was highly unnerving. I couldn’t stand the inexistence of vibrations that caused audible mechanical waves. No doof doof, chitter chatter or tweets…nothing.  I couldn’t deal with how deafening it was. My sanity was often tested in moments of complete and utter silence; where the sound of a pin dropping feels magnified.  But most of all, I could not (and I did not want to) cope with the truth that lingered in the midst of it. It’s a piercing kind of truth that makes you focus into it whether you like it or not.

God being God, led me to countless moments of such silence. Last year September, I was separated from my daily routine, my ordinary surroundings, my comfort people. After completing my degree in June, I lingered in Port Elizabeth trying to find employment opportunities. I was rushed, would’ve accepted anything really. In moments of great panic, I’d be cluttered with familiar noise; the voices of everyone besides the one that matters. Beginning August, God rocked me ‘til I was still and it was in that stillness when I found the overwhelming peace of what was to happen. When the time came for me to leave, there were no tears, only a smile that I could not understand.

When I got home, God was amazing enough to confirm words that He had given me. I felt a sense of relief but somehow, I knew that there was very little chance of me going back to PE. With each passing day, that thought started becoming more and more of a reality.  All of a sudden, I had to start over again. Even though home was the same, everything else was different. People who, when I left, were proper rebels had found the redemptive fingerprint of God and were new creatures. While this was awesome, it meant compounded change that I had to adjust to. The noise started again.

“Your friends in PE aren’t lost without you. After a week everything will resume as normal.”

“You don’t really belong anywhere here…no one understands the language you’ve taken time to learn.”

“You won’t find what you’re looking for. Why are you still with this God? If He loved you, wouldn’t He have given you a job in PE already?”

I developed frustration, waking up every morning and having to think about how I’m going to spend my day. The noise got louder and louder. Everyday seemed to go by very fast but I had very little to show for them. But because God is a God that cares for us, the noise stopped escalating and started to mellow down. It was then when I would find myself looking forward to go to Wednesday prayers and Thursday cell meetings and Sunday church services. All I wanted was to be in His presence. And it was in His presence where I found answers to my life’s essay questions. It was in His presence where I found the truth about myself. It was in His presence where I was moulded; reshaped, redefined, refreshed. It was in His presence where I found understanding. I was led into silence. I was led into stillness.

I praise God for being an ever present help in times of trouble. There is nothing in and about our lives that He doesn’t see. When the devil was trying to cloud my faith with his lies those months ago, God was there, watching. He allowed it to happen so I can also stand and proclaim Him as a God who hears our cries; you know those cries in the middle of the night when everyone is asleep and He is your only source of comfort. I bless God for those moments. I love the silence now.

#Review Bethel We Will Not Be Shaken

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“Bethel music exists to carry the culture of heaven to the nation through song.”

That is exactly what they’ve accomplished. Throughout the world, Bethel is known not only as a community of people that live to worship the Lord, but also people that carry the anointing to minister through song. They’re new album, We Will Not Be Shaken is one that carries songs of deliverance, praise, faith filled declarations and intense worship. It comes with a DVD that portrays the beauty in and amongst them as they worship God into the night. Recording on a mountaintop setting, this Redding, California based ensemble has truly reached another level of faith that is seen in their worship.

One thing that remains constant throughout the album is the presence of powerful, emotional, personal and prayerful lyrics. The opening song, we will not be shaken, starts us off with declaring that through God’s unfailing love, we will not be shaken. This is a song of truth over facts; stating that no matter what is going on around us and in our lives, His unfailing love establishes us on solid ground. No longer slaves has a similar theme. It is a declaration and a confession of no longer being slaves of fear because we are Gods own children. Led by Jonathan and Melissa Helser, this song brings raw emotion as it is also a song of deliverance.

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Jesus we love you stands out as an anthem of worship and gratitude for all that God has done, breathing in life to things that we thought were dead. It’s an intimate song that seeks to praise God for personal triumph as well as those of others. Amanda Cook leads a beautiful two part song titled You don’t miss a thing. The first part of this poetic song captures the essence of Gods beauty while the second part acknowledges God as an omnipresent God. Seas of crimson, You are my one thing and Who can compare to You carry the same anthem spirit of highlighting the glory and beauty of God that cannot be taken away from Him.  Home is a song that captures ones spirit to sing and worship along with the gifted vocalist Hunter Thompson.

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The closing song, In over my head (crash over me) by Jenn Johnson, is one that reminds me of Oceans by Hillsong. It is a song that comes from a place of deep conviction. The words give life to the melody that it carries. It brings a beautiful ending to this session of worship.

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#Guest_Blogger Asa – soul searching

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The burning sensation that I’m feeling right now tells me that this is not it, this is not the end of my story, actually more like the beginning. I’ve been going through a little self doubt and I’m not the kind of person that believes in pity parties so I definitely had some soul searching to do. And this is my journey…

I was just watching top billing, a show that’s a sort of gateway for me, a gateway to other realities, to dreams that seem so far but yet soo close. Now while watching the show I just had the biggest ahaa moment. Nothing in this life is far beyond my reach. Nothing is unattainable, nothing is unattainable for anyone. The reason things work out the way they do is because we tend to give up on ourselves. We give up on our abilities, our hopes, goals. We stop dreaming. I’m reading this beautiful book called Conversations with God and the one thing I’m learning right now is when you want something, whatever it may be you have to put in the work, have a plan, create your future exactly the way you want it to be and no one will stand in your way.

I once had a plan and along the way I lost track of it, I lost track of the things that I want. I ended up wanting to follow the crowd with no real understanding of what my real plan was and I mean it’s only understandable because we get soooo busy trying to prove ourselves in this world and to try do right so much so that we lose track. I have no one to blame but myself. I stopped doing the work, I stopped focusing on myself and thing is I’m the kind of person who gets soo involved and into someone or something that I forget that I have to be selfish at times.

Each and evey soul requires that stillness, that connection with the higher power, that moment where it’s just you and God. That is where things come together, that is where you remember who you are and what you want to bring to this earth. Have something that connects you to your soul thereby bringing you closer to God. And with this you will never lose site of your main goal.

#RememberToFallInloveEveryday. Asa.