Joyful Groaning

sunset-3325080_1920That which we all long for,
Is Joy we have not seen,
It is the beauty of pure love,
In the face of Majesty.

Christ, our greatest longing,
Intense Joy beyond all,
Meets desire to be satisfied,
Since the dark dawn of the fall.

Come again, Bright Morning,
Come joyful, Lord Jesus,
For until your faithful return,
There is no resting in us.

Growing hunger endures,
Like the thirst of dry land,
Nothing in the world is enough,
To fulfill the heart of man.

We plead for small glimpses,
We struggle to truly see,
For beauty is clouded by sin,
While joy is stained with ugly.

So we groan on our way,
Longing, crying, praying,
Dying to enter forever,
Where True Joy is preparing.

Behind the lines

For the times we struggle for joy, yet know there is hope and joy to come. Where waiting with patience means a joyful groan.

[18] For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us. [19] For the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the sons of God. [20] For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of him who subjected it, in hope [21] that the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to corruption and obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God. [22] For we know that the whole creation has been groaning together in the pains of childbirth until now. [23] And not only the creation, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies. [24] For in this hope we were saved. Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what he sees? [25] But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience (Romans 8:18-25 ESV).

 

 

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Crying Out

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Waiting, we’ve waited so long,
When, when will You come?
We’re crying out, crying out,
We’re waiting for You.

Angels, presents, gold and myrrh,
Born, she gives Him birth,
He’s crying out, crying out,
Savior of the World.

Prophets, and God’s promises,
John, He comes at last,
He’s crying out, crying out,
For the Holy One.

Perfect, Savior without sin,
Ours, were placed on Him,
He’s crying out, crying out,
On a cross of love.

Risen, He lives, life He gives,
Go, tell of His gift,
We’re crying out, crying out,
Until He returns.

Waiting, we’ve waited so long,
When, when will You come?
We’re crying out, crying out,
We’re waiting for You.

Jesus, Yahweh Saves

love-699480_1920Jesus, Eternal Son of God,
Betrayed, denied, by those He loved,
The Healer, Creator, and Blest,
Was crucified and laid to rest.

Jesus, Yahweh Saves,
Jesus, what a name!
Your life, Your death,
Your vict’ry over sin,
Yahweh saves, Yahweh saves!

Jesus, the Sacrifice of God,
The Light, The Bread, The Lamb and Blood,
The Temple, destroyed, and then raised,
Built again in only three days.

Jesus, Victor over all sin,
The grave could never hold You in,
You rose to conquer hell and death,
And fulfilled the Words You had said.

Jesus, Friend of sinners and thieves,
You have pardoned the worst of these,
You cast out demons in the soul,
Then drowned and bound them evermore.

Jesus, Returning King,
Living, reigning, interceding.

Let The Rocks Cry Out

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Bloodshed follows bloodshed,
There’s no knowledge of God,
Swearing, stealing, and adultery,
No one faithful in love.

The law is forgotten,
And the truth is in doubt,
The Lord Jesus is rejected,
By the lost preacher’s mouth.

So let the rocks cry out,
And resolve to be firm,
To praise the God of Salvation,
‘Til the day He returns.

Bloodshed follows bloodshed,
For the cleansing of sin,
And there is no other Savior,
Who can rescue lost men.

And this God is faithful,
His promises endure,
He is certain as the sunrise,
And His coming is sure.

So let the rocks cry out,
And resolve to be firm,
To praise the God of Salvation,
‘Til the day He returns.

Behind the lines

As found in the book of Hosea, there is a pattern in the Old Testament of God’s people turning away and then coming back to Him because of His faithfulness to them.

The rocks referenced here have double meaning. Physical rocks (Luke 19:40) crying out, and Christians who are living stones being built up as a spiritual house because of Christ the Cornerstone (1 Peter 2:5).

If the children of God do not cry out in praise and stand firm on the Truth, let the (physical) rocks cry out in honor of Him.

And Sing To Him

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We need not fear His judgment throne,
For Christ is our refuge song,
Send praises to the Righteous One,
And sing to Him.

Let the ends of the earth rejoice,
Come together with one voice,
Send praises to the Righteous One,
And sing to Him.

Sing of life to the Creator,
Sing of birth and a manger,
Sing of wrath on perfection,
Sing of the resurrection,

Those repentant, all who believe,
Who by grace have eyes to see,
Send praises to the Righteous One,
And Sing to Him.

Give glory to the name of the LORD,
He will return, His Word is sure,
Send praises to the Righteous One,
And sing to Him.

We need not fear His judgment throne,
For Christ is our refuge song…

Behind the lines

Isaiah 24 tells of great judgment on sinful creation where singing and music cease (v8-9) and temporal joy has grown dark (v11), but there is salvation for the saints and they begin to sing (v14-16a).

They lift up their voices, they sing for joy;
over the majesty of the LORD they shout from the west.

Therefore in the east give glory to the LORD;
in the coastlands of the sea, give glory to the name of the LORD, the God of Israel.

From the ends of the earth we hear songs of praise,
of glory to the Righteous One.
(Isaiah 24:14-16a ESV)

What a beautiful picture of God’s grace in the midst of judgment. For all who are in Christ need not fear His judgment because we are His and His alone. This great truth makes us sing and rejoice. But Isaiah, who sees the corruption, terror, and devastation all around is unable to join in at first. He says in v16b:

But I say, “I waste away,
I waste away. Woe is me!
For the traitors have betrayed,
with betrayal the traitors have betrayed.”
(Isaiah 24:14-16 ESV)

However, as we move on to Chapters 25 & 26, Isaiah reaffirms his confidence in the Sovereign and He is able to rejoice:

O LORD, you are my God;
I will exalt you; I will praise your name,
for you have done wonderful things,
plans formed of old, faithful and sure.
(Isaiah 25:1 ESV)

He goes on to write, “let us be glad and rejoice in his salvation (v9).” And then in Chapter 26 he gives us a song that will be sung in the land which includes these famous verses:

You keep him in perfect peace
whose mind is stayed on you,
because he trusts in you.

Trust in the LORD forever,
for the LORD GOD is an everlasting rock.
(Isaiah 26:3-4 ESV)

May we never forget this great salvation, especially in the midst of a sinful world facing devastating judgment. May He cause us to “send praises…And sing to Him.” Amen.

Not Yet

 

 

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Tall trees create morning shadows on a sleepy Saturday,
Waking, yawning, and stretching leafless limbs in the sun,
As rays climb their backs massaging away winter’s chill bumps.

A mockingbird fills the breeze with a harmony of persistence,
Calling, calling, waiting, and longing for another,
Still calling, calling, waiting, longing, for spring to answer.

Behind the lines

What have you waited for and finally received? What joy did it bring?

Are you still waiting?

May we long for the Savior’s return.

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