Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Worship Expressed Through Music



"We're not singers nor artists, we're worshipers who sing which is completely different. Many are singers who worship because they have the talent but then there's those who worship yet can't sing."    —Kerwin Marquez 
God has called us all to be Worshipers: The waitress, the hairstylist, the professor, the janitor, the teenager, the child, the old man who sits quietly reading the daily newspaper, the musician, the singer, the dancer, and the artist. We have all been called to Worship God in spirit and in truth. So what comes first? First, we are worshipers...that is the wellspring of any other title or action. A singer/musician who Worships is not the same as a Worshiper who sings or plays an instrument in that, the one who Worships first is overflowing with the Father's love. The well of everything else is the love of God.  The well of a singer/musician who worships is their art in itself; their idol is their craft and only in the limits of their craft can they function. Micheal Jackson could make people cry, laugh, and dance but Kim Walker can make people do the same and through her the Lord brings true freedom, forgiveness, joy, peace, and liberation.

There is a difference between a servant who works for a Master and a child who serves his or her father. What's the difference? LOVE. Out of love a child will serve his or her father, while a servant serves out of obligation. Many may not know this difference but the distance between the two is huge. A servant is permitted certain privileges, while the children of the Master have it all by right.  It is the difference between singing beautifully and having a beautiful voice that is anointed and filled with the power of God that can heal and restore. When we think about worship we picture a pianist or a singer but a worshiper is a person who exalts the Lord through a direct relationship with God, where nothing else matters but Him and His sweet presence. This has nothing to do with being on stage. We are worshipers off-stage, in public, in the quiet. It's a lifestyle. Let us all as children of God, regardless of our talents or titles, step into this lifestyle and step outside of ourselves so that God can be seen. Our lives, CD's, Profession, or record labels are not about us but simply and wholeheartedly all about Jesus. Are we more consumed with getting our voices recorded so that we can be looked at, or are we here to save souls and transform lives so that the Kingdom of heaven can be established on this earth? If God has called you to record then do it, but don't trade the one who got you there for what is there. Is it possible that we are so busy trying to get discovered, that we've forgotten our first love? Where's that love that reached in to pull us out of the sinking sand, that cleansed, and that scooped us up without a doubt? For those that maybe thought of worship as singing...there's so much more. God is offering us a continual relationship that is a back and forth motion of love that cannot be bottled up nor contained. So much love that our bodies cannot stand. Not everyone can sing or play guitar, but everyone can worship. Everyone can offer up their lives as a living sacrifice. This is the type of true worship that the Lord is looking for. A paintbrush has no life and neither does a keyboard...we hold life within us because God made it so, and it is our life that He desires forever. It is our lives that He wants to touch and transform.

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(Romans 12:1)Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship.

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Friday, November 23, 2012

<<<-My Spirit Hit The Floor Running Thanksgiving Day->>>




12:00AM

 I lay awake, talking on the phone with my friend. Right after we hung up I literally fell asleep, literally. With my cell by my side and my pillow drenched in sweet dreams, at last my body fell into a deep deep slumber.



6:00AM

Seldom do I wake up at such an early time. Little rays of light shined through my window, tickling my eyes. I rose to my feet and thanked the Lord for so many big and little things. Quiet: the perfect ambiance for some intimate time with God. Can somebody say "Soul Food"? I piled up my three notebooks, huge water bottle, and Bible in my arms and crept downstairs toward the couch in our living room. I really felt like my Spirit was just crying out and saying, "Feed me Deya, feed me!" Pages and pages later, I journaled for a bit and finally got into the word. I wanted to cry as I read the life of David as I approached the end of the second book of Samuel. After some amusing conversations with my God, my Mami (how we say mom in Spanish) came downstairs and we ate a yummy breakfast. A nice sandwich comprised of whole grain bread, ham, lettuce, tomato, avocado, mayo, and mustard. This may not be your typical breakfast but it's part of the healthy meal plan that thanks to God I am now following. Tips to come!



2:00PM

The smell of turkey, stuffing, gravy, and green-bean-casserole filled the air and floated up the stairs and into our three bedrooms. The four of us gathered around the table, agreed as we came together in prayer, and ate my Mami's amazing food. It was so good! We laughed, reminaced, and then laughed some more!



5:00PM

And the crazy back and forth driving began! First stop, my Abuelita (grandma) Yolanda's house which is ten minutes away in Mission. We drove back to our old neighborhood, past our first house and seven houses later, parked in front of my Abuelito's (grandparents's) House. My little sister, mom, dad, and I walked in, abrasando y saludando (hugging and saying hello with a custom side cheek kiss), all my aunts, uncles, cousins, and grandparents. I love our culture and I love how God just transcends all culture to define and receive us. Because we had eaten at home I just grabbed a teeny slice of pumpkin pie while laughing my head off with my cousin Genesis. I hadn't seen her in forever since she took off to Texas A&M in the Fall. They officially converted her and I couldn't help but laugh and throw it in her face as we chuckled and loudly spilled over the couch making our usual references to Transformers Movies, (apparently only we do this) "Don't talk to me don't talk to me criminal!" I missed my Prima (cousin) so much! Before we had to leave to head on over to our second stop I got to say Hi to my cousin Laura, a news anchor for Telemundo 40, so that was cool too. I honestly had a great time as strange as it felt revisiting the roads that use to break my fall as I fell when learning how to ride my bike, that use to be targets for setting fire to fireworks in a glass bottle on Año Nuevo (New Years).



8:00PM

Second stop: Abuelita Marta's house. Here abraze y salude, I smiled, giggled, cried, and prayed. My Tia (Aunt) Chio has been bed bound for a while now with Cancer. Just like my Mami she's an amazing Woman of God with faith that can move mountains. All twenty of us gathered around her, held hands, as my Papi (Daddy) and then Mami led us in powerful prayer. We're all believing God for her recovery and restoration because we've seen and have experienced first-hand what the Lord can do if we dare to believe. We all know that the case is not the same for everyone but as Believers we know that God prepares his people for what is to come, revealing to us that which is hidden. Through dreams we have all seen my aunt walking, talking, and giving testimony of her experience. Even my grandma of my dad's side of the family has dreamed her. I can't even fathom what the Lord has in store for my Tia but like Jobe she will be restored and overflowing in blessing because not once did she complain nor deny her God, her Lord and Savior. We serve the living God who's hand is not too short to save. I believe it!


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Ahhh, what a beautiful Thanksgiving this was.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Autumn Cravings And Things



I am officially out of school!...for Thanksgiving break anyway. Exhausted, tired, but still alive and breathing. University life can be stressful at times, especially when exam season and finals come along, but I love it. As corny as it may sound, yesterday in my quiet time with the Lord I began to thank Him for the opportunity that I have to even attend school. Many don't get to further their education. I have been given a beautiful, price-less gift. Of course I've had to work hard to get to where I am, but God opened the doors so that I could walk through victoriously. Often it feels like I'm walking a million miles but the fact that I know that there will be an open door waiting for me when I reach my destination is more than enough to make me wanna keep on movin' forward. This is one of the many things that I'm thankful for. Today I finished up my exam and rushed through traffic to get home. Oh home sweet home. I feel so lazy. I just jumped into bed and started blogging away. Literally here I am in my old high school T-shirt and PJ's. And that's how you know that it's vacation time for me.

Lately, more like forever ago, I've been craving some good soul food: definition being God time, new revelation, encounters, and worship. This kind of hunger can only be quenched by some nice one on one time with my sweet Jesus. There's a scripture that I've been reading for a while now that's really struck a chord in me...definitely one of my favorite Psalms. It's times like these that make me want to lock my door and throw away the key so I can just be, you know? But one thing I do know and that is that my social/public life will be impacted by my intimate/private life. In the quiet we are shaped and in the midst of encounters with our Beloved we are transformed. Many areas of my life have been tottering on the brink of extinction but I like what God has been replacing these areas with. We can either hate change or embrace it with arms and eyes wide open. On Monday, my homework assignment for the Psalmist School I attend was to make song, in Spanish, out of a Psalm and ultimately my heart was won over by the same portion of verses that I just finished telling y'all about. So from David's heart, to my heart, and finally to yours I share with you my
                      
 Psalm of inspiration:


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(Psalm 63:1-8) 
O God, you are my God;
I earnestly search for you. My soul thirsts 
for you; my whole body longs for you in 
this parched and weary land where there 
is no water. I have seen you in your 
sanctuary and gazed upon your power 
and glory. Your unfailing love is better than 
life itself; how I praise you! I will praise you 
as long as I live, lifting up my hands to you 
in prayer. You satisfy me more than the 
richest feast. I will praise you with songs of 
joy. I lie awake thinking of you, meditating 
on you through the night. Because you 
are my helper, I sing for joy in the shadow 
of your wings. I cling to you; your strong 
right hand holds me securely.
*~*~*



And now...a little tune from my ipod


Saturday, November 10, 2012

When The Spirit Takes Control

(Ephesians 5:18-21) Do not get drunk on 
wine, which leads to debauchery. Instead, be filled with the Spirit, speaking to one another with psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit. Sing and make music from your heart to the Lord,  always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.


*~*~*


The Holy Spirit is spunky, fun, and uncontrollable. When He takes over, He reigns and moves with laughter, peace, and brings with Him an overflow of crazily-profound-inexplicable love. It's like a gentle breeze, a cool rain, that you just want to step out and dance in. Your head says, "No! You'll get sick!" yet something deep in your heart tells you to jump in before the moment's gone. The word of God warns us against giving into anything of this world that would cause us to lose control of ourselves, but the Holy Spirit is the exception. He's the reason why feet leave the floor during praise, why people speak and sing in tongues, why spontaneous Worship flows out to create a new unrehearsed song. It's all the Spirit of God making Himself known, establishing His Kingdom on earth. Don't fight it, jump in and be overtaken by the Presence of God...there in that cloud we will see God's Glory. A thankful heart knows of no boundaries or reservations. Freedom that can only come from The Holy Spirit will gradually and over abundantly fill us up if we spend less time interfering and more time giving in. Your cup will be so full that the overflow will just poor out and cause others to be filled as well.


Friday, November 9, 2012

Transitioning—Move Forward!

Transition: passage from one state, stage, subject, or place to another
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Why do we need to transition? There comes a time in our lives when the Lord begins to move us toward a new season and it's crucial to transition smoothly.
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"You will live in the fruit of this moment."  Kim Walker 


Seasons come and seasons go and "people come and go so quickly." Things change, they really change and it makes us feel as if the world has just shifted up and down and all around in just a blink of an eye. In these moments we have to quiet our hearts and be sensitive to the voice of God. It's not a question of whether we can be literally silent or not, but about how obedient and responsive to God we can be. We're not born with a perfect pitched spiritual ear, it's developed and formed as our relationship with God grows. We begin to know what He sounds like and feels like. In my case, when I stop everything and silence the world around me my room becomes my meeting place with God. Here behind closed doors I cry, I converse, I laugh, I question, and I worship, and here is where I feel God walk, whisper words into my heart, and overflow my heart with love and guidance. It's in these moments where the Lord begins to prep us for what lies ahead, because the strength of our relationship with Him determines how we handle and walk through each passing season. A smooth transition. As children of God we need to know how to move from one place to another, trusting God with our lives. Some seasons are rough and others are full of joy, but one thing that I know to be true is this God is still God and never changes. His promises for us hold true and each lesson is meant to be learned. Yes, it's for our benefit. Because we love the Lord, all things work together for our good. 



*~*~*

(Ecclesiastes 3:1) For everything there is 
a season, a time for every activity under 
heaven.
*~*
(Ecclesiastes 7:10) Don’t long for 
“the good old days.” This is not wise. 
*~*
(Galations 4:9-10) But now that you know 
God—or rather are known by God—how 
is it that you are turning back to those weak 
and miserable forces? Do you wish 
to be enslaved by them all over again? 
You are observing special days 
and months and seasons and years!

*~*~*


No matter what the new season may be 
that the Lord is walking you through, 
keep your eyes fixed straight on God. 
Don't look to the right nor to the left and 
walk on. People will fail you and buildings 
will try to contain you but the presence 
of God, now that will be with you 
wherever you go.
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