Friday, December 31, 2010

"Get on your mark...get set...go!"

"Do you not know that those who run in a race all run, but one receives the prize? Run in such a way that you may obtain it....v26, Therefore, I run thus: not with uncertainty. Thus I fight: not as one who beats the air."
1 Corinthians 9:24,26

      I've been thinking a lot about what it means to run the race Paul talks about in 1Corinthians 9:24-27. He tells us to run the race to obtain the prize. What prize is he talking about? It's not a trophy or a plaque to hang on the wall, and it's not a gold medal to wear around your neck; nothing like that. It's not so much something you get as it is something you accomplish. Obviously, you reach the finish line on the last day of your life. When you step over the line and the race is finished -you will either have won or not. There won't be another chance to win, and you get no trial runs...only one try...that's it. When your foot touches that line the stopwatch button is pressed down and the running shoes come off, the race is over.  On the other side of that line stands the Judge who determines the winners and there are only two things that will matter at the end - What you did with the life He gave you and what you did with His Son.

      I've decided to crawl over the line...yes crawl. I'm determined to be incapable of running when I get to the finish line - not one ounce of strength left, completely pooped out, used up, worn out...done! I want to run in such a way I use every bit of energy I have; every gift, opportunity, deed, kind word - holding nothing back. I want my foot to touch the line with no regrets, no words unsaid, no love withheld or turned away, and with my shoes in need of repair. I want to be emptied out and leave no left overs behind - to use it all for Him.

      It's a new year with new opportunities...good works God planned for each of us to do. People to love and God's Son to share. Let's lace up our shoes and run the race of 2011 in such a way that will wear the soles right off, and use ourselves up for Him.

      Erma Bombeck said it beautifully -
          "When I stand before God at the end of my life, I would hope that I would have not a single bit of talent left and could say, 'I used everything You gave me.'"

"...forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus."
Philippians 3:13-14

Friday, December 24, 2010

Immanuel - God with us...

The Name above All Names

He has a name above all names, His Father gave to Him,
A name that intercedes for us, brings hope when times are dim.

A name that heals the broken hearts, makes blinded eyes to see,
Restores the lame to walk again, and sets the captives free.

A name that shakes the prison bars, that we erect from sin,
Removes the chains of bondage there, and makes us free again.

The holy name of Jesus Christ, the Perfect Prince of Peace,
Mighty God, King of Kings, the name that brings release.

He came as Light to shine the way, and bring us back to God,
He did not come with judgment’s wrath, but with a Shepherd’s rod.

He is the one True Way to God, the Door we enter through,
The only name that saves a soul, Jesus-Faithful and True.

He came to pierce the darkest night, find those who lost their way,
And set their feet on Solid Rock, bring hope with each new day.

His name means more than we can know, it holds all power and might,
By it our ransom has been paid, exchanging wrong with right.

One day all flesh will bow their knee, proclaim Him Lord of Lords,
The precious name that paid the price, which no one could afford.

The Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and End,
Came down to earth to touch our hearts, relationships to mend.

The Great I AM has come to us, a babe so long ago,
To be the Way, the Truth, and Life, for those He came to know.

Immanuel – God’s with us now, the gift we can’t ignore,
Exalt His name, accept His love, it’s YOU He came here for.

©2010 Charlotte Foster

Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, and every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
Philippians 2:9-11

Saturday, December 11, 2010

A Christ-mas Poem

      I posted this poem last year, but it's in my heart around this time every year so I decided to post it again. You see, this is the very first poem God gave me when I began writing poetry. It seems so fitting to remember it each year at Christmas time. It makes so much sense to me that the very first poem He would give me would be about His Son. He is the beginning of everything -

          "He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For by Him all things were created that are in heaven and that are on earth...all things were created through Him and for Him. And He is before all things, and in Him all things consist." Colossians 1:15-16 NKJ.

I hope you don't mind me sharing it again.

His Name Is Jesus

At Christmas time remember Him
The One who came to heal our sin.
The little child within the manger
The One whom angels hid from danger.

Though in a tiny manger bed
He wore God's crown upon His head.
The babe who came to be our King
To Him the heavenly anthems ring.

The Prince of Peace quietly laying
While people unaware were praying.
To send His light, and God had heard
In the manger lay the Living Word.

God's own Son, the Lord of Host
The very One He loved the most.
He came a ransom for our sin
To heal the broken hearts of men.

This Holy One, the Great I Am
To be the Sacrificial Lamb.
As He slept that Christmas Day
In the shadow of the cross He lay.

So as we give our gifts of love
Remember the One who came from above.
And give Him praise for all He's done
The King of Kings, God's only Son.

©1992Charlotte Foster

Friday, December 3, 2010

Did He Smile?

One question went through my mind as I watched this video clip..."What was God's reaction?" I know the unsuspecting people in the food court had to be pleasantly surprised with such a performance, and I'm sure they were blessed. But I couldn't help imagine the living creatures in heaven (Rev. 4:8) peering down to see who was joining them with a song of praise, as they sang day and night around the throne of the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. Heaven and earth praising the One whose kingdom will never end, the One who will reign forever and ever - Hallelujah! 

It's not hard to imagine how it pleased God, and that He smiled.

       And every creature which is in heaven and on the earth and under the earth and such as are in the sea,
       and all that are in them, I heard saying:
          "Blessing and honor and glory and power
           Be to Him who sits on the throne,
           And to the Lamb, forever and ever!"
                                     Revelations 5:13