Monday, January 9, 2012


Anyone who has read my blog over the past few months knows that 2011 was a crazy year for my family. 2012 has not proved itself much better. My family was hit with the stomach bug right after New Year's and now my wife is working on her first cold of the school year. Props to her immune system for having gotten her through the Fall with no major issues. The difficulty is that she's got 3 kids (5, 3, and 3 1/2 months) to take care of, making it difficult to slow down.

Our house is alive with chaos. With two boys (5 and 3) there is a lot of energy and activity. We may clean up a room temporarily, only to have it completely destroyed within minutes, if not seconds. I'm really not sure how so many people with small children are able to keep their houses in order the way that they do. But I think there' a difference between a messy house and a "lived in" house. While we have probably been lingering around the former, the difference may be more subtle.

I can honestly admit that I have too much going on in my life. Most, if not all, of it is no fault of my own. Circumstances have created the situation that I find myself in and many of those circumstances are beyond my control. Caring for a parent who has been ill, taking extra responsibilities at work because of the departure of someone else, caring for my family, and trying to push through my last year of seminary are all consuming me. I am not prepared to abandon any of those things, so I find myself in a place where I need to manage the chaos.

That's really a false statement though, I cannot manage the chaos. The more that I think that I can, the more chaotic it will become. Instead, in my weakness, I rely on the strength of the One who has created me, the One who provides me what I need.

A few years ago, I had the opportunity to lead worship with some of the members of the Hillsong team from Australia. It was an incredible experience as they were humble and kind, not haughty or pompous as some who have achieved success might be. There were a number of other people who were local who had been asked to be part of the team that was leading worship for this conference.

One afternoon, between conference sessions, I sat down at the piano to play a worship song called "Still" that was written by a member of the Hillsong team. One of the vocalists, who was local like me, came in while I was playing it and mentioned to me how much that song had meant to him. It wasn't until later that I understood how much it had meant to him. The words are below:


By Reuben Morgan

Hide me now, under Your wings.

Cover me, within Your mighty hand.

When the oceans rise and thunders roar,

I will soar with You above the storm.

Father, you are King over the flood,

I will be still and know You are God.

Find rest my soul, in Christ alone.

Know His power in quietness and trust.

When the oceans rise and thunders roar,

I will soar with You above the storm.

Father, you are King over the flood,

I will be still and know You are God.

I had come to find out later the story of the gentleman who had come in while I was playing this song. He had lost his wife and a few of his children when their car was caught in a flash flood. He had desperately tried to save his family, to no avail. He was a fairly young guy and there was nothing about him that gave me any indication that he had been through such a horrific event. As I played the words through in my head, I realized how powerful they must be to him.

As chaotic as life gets, as difficult as our circumstances might be, we do not serve a God who is removed from this mess. In fact, the author of Hebrews writes in Hebrews 4:14-16, "Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has ascended into heaven, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold firmly to the faith we profess. For we do not have a high priest who is unable to empathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are—yet he did not sin. Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need."

I don't understand the chaos that is part of this life sometimes. I know that my chaos pales in comparison to what many other people have had to experience. I know that God never intended chaos, but it is a result of sin. Although I know these things, it doesn't take away the pain and frustration of having certain experiences, it simply gives me hope for the future.

When I experience difficulties, I do my best to heed the words of the Psalmist to be still and know that He is God. I can rise above the storms and floods and find rest in God alone. There is no better place to be in the midst of a storm than in the arms of my Father.

Here is a link to the song "Still" if you have not heard it. I hope that God can speak to you wherever you might be.

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