"Anyone can have one kid. But going from one kid to two is like going from owning a dog to running a zoo." - P. J. O'Rourke

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Freedom, Future Grace and Mumford & Sons

Freedom = the state of not being imprisoned or enslaved 


Future Grace = the grace (gifts) God promises us, but we have not yet received (e.g., heaven)

Mumford & Sons = an English folk band

What do the three have in common?

Through my decision to go on the Amazing Middle-Aged Moms' Road Trip, I discovered that there were people that wanted to "imprison or enslave" me into their belief that, as a Christian, I should not be embarking on an apparently obsessive journey to Kansas City to hear a "secular" band of young men sing.

This hurt my heart - deeply - because the God I know and love made me and he LOVES me the way he made me.  And while some people find their relationship with God strengthened only through "Christian" music and or literature, I am not one of those people.  God put in me a mind that loves beauty, that loves the beauty of words, that loves to be challenged to think and not be spoon-fed, that loves music!  When I hear or see beautiful things I feel God's presence in ways I cannot explain.  It is like a glimpse of Heaven to me - where all things will be beautiful.

When I read books like Les Miserables or The Brothers Karamazov my heart draws near to God.  I think deeply about forgiveness and the cost and responsibilities that come with it.  They challenge my brain and my soul.  Theses "non-Christian" books do more for my walk with the Lord than many devotionals I have read.  My God, who is very large and very powerful, is able to speak to my heart through literature that may or may not have been intended to bring Him glory.

Likewise, my God, who is very large and very powerful, is able to speak to my heart through music that is sung and written by people who may, or may not, be seeking His glory.  And I have freedom in Him to worship Him through such music.

This brings us to the future grace and Mumford & Sons part of this post :-)

Much of their music touches the very innermost part of my soul.  I cannot explain it to you.  It resonates with something deep down inside of me.  When I listen to (or sing), "love that will not betray you, dismay or enslave you, it will set you free, to be more like the man you were made to be" my heart screams, "YES! I know that love!  That is the love that Jesus shows me!"  Future grace!

When I listen to (or sing), "there is a design, an alignment, a cry, of my heart to see, the beauty of love as it was made to be," my heart prays, "Jesus, show me that love!"  Future grace.  We will indeed see that beautiful love, in all of its glory, some day!

When I listen to (or sing - with tears) "And there will come a time, you'll see, with no more tears.
And love will not break your heart, but dismiss your fears.
Get over your hill and see what you find there,
With grace in your heart and flowers in your hair."  Well, my heart just cries for that day!  Future grace.


There.

I've explained it the best that I can.   I've exposed some deep corners of my heart to the entire world - not something I really enjoy doing, but something I felt that I must do. No doubt I will still have people make judgement calls on my heart.  I can't change that.  I rest in the love of the God who made me, who delights in me, who does know my innermost heart...

As an aside, I just want to say to my friends and family who are walking with me through this, who know me well and still love me, thank you!  I LOVE YOU AND I SO VERY MUCH APPRECIATE YOUR LOVE FOR ME!   Thank you for letting me be who God made me to be!  You are a treasure, a gift from my Heavenly Father, which I hold very dear to my heart!


16 comments:

  1. Standing in a crowd of 10,000 predominantly very lost souls who had their hands raised and were singing, "Awake my soul, awake my soul, Awake my soul, You were made to meet your maker, Awake my soul, awake my soul, Awake my soul
    You were made to meet your maker
    You were made to meet your maker.." was simply amazing. It seemed as though the Lord was calling out for them all to open their hearts and actually meet their maker. I don't think I've ever seen 10,000 lost souls show up to church to sing truth straight from the Bible and to cry out with all their hearts, Awake my soul!" Some of those people WERE praying and God is going to answer their prayers. And I'm praying it to...oh Lord, awake my soul...so I am not just brave enough to stand in a crowd of 10,000 lost souls, but actually brave enough to introduce them to their maker.

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  2. Barb, that was very good! Thank you for posting this. I am very sorry that you have been going through this. I had no such thoughts if that is of any encouragment to you. Keep hanging on to God's truth like you are. I love you!

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  3. Sylvia, yes, it was an experience like no other. Thank you for sharing in it with me!

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  4. Tina, I know of your unconditional love for me! Thank you for loving me these 20+ years!

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  5. As another soul who has been taught gently and profoundly by Les Mis and The Bros. K, I found this post captures light wherever it may be found.

    Thank you for articulating this, even if it was hard. It needs to be said!

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  6. Barb, yikes! What are people thinking...wondering about you going to a concert?! You are solidly loving and serving Christ, blessing, caring for, and encouraging your family, and being salt and light to a dark world. Sounds like some are struggling with legalism. Just because it is something others would not do doesn't mean that it is wrong for someone else. Time to let that go and trust that your relationship with the Lord is all that truly matters, not the opinions of others (easier said than done, mind you...). Those lyrics, when applied to Christ, are lovely! So sorry you are dealing with condemnation and questioning. I have always appreciated your zest for life! :)

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  7. Barb, yikes! What are people thinking...wondering about you going to a concert?! You are solidly loving and serving Christ, blessing, caring for, and encouraging your family, and being salt and light to a dark world. Sounds like some are struggling with legalism. Just because it is something others would not do doesn't mean that it is wrong for someone else. Time to let that go and trust that your relationship with the Lord is all that truly matters, not the opinions of others (easier said than done, mind you...). Those lyrics, when applied to Christ, are lovely! So sorry you are dealing with condemnation and questioning. I have always appreciated your zest for life! :)

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  8. Jen, it was hard, more so than I would have thought. Honestly, I thought of you while I was posting this. I knew you would understand where I was coming from. :-). You're my literary mentor :-)

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  9. Just one more of the many reasons why I love you, Barb.

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  10. I should clarify one thing. This criticism did not come directly to me, or I would have dealt with it solely with that person. It came anonymously through a dear friend and it was criticism that has produced an abundance of fruit in my life, namely the reawakening of my freedom in Christ and my appreciation for God, Jesus and my dear friends and family! It was not a bad thing - whatever the intent of the original speaker, God meant it for good!

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  11. Erica, thank you. I think the lyrics were indeed written to be applied to Christ (knowing some of the background of the artists), but certainly each person can take them for what they want them to mean.

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  12. And Chris, thank you, thank you, thank you for always letting me be me! Apart from Jesus, you are indeed God's greatest gift to me!

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  13. my sentiments exactly!
    your bologna reader...

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  14. Thank you, my Italian friend :-)

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  15. Wow! This really touched me Barb. Thanks for sharing your heart in this. I have often felt that I was being judged for some of my choices. And I am a "people-pleaser"...to a fault. So, I was always feeling like I had to change who I am in order to make others like me, or make them happy. I am learning that I need to be my "authentic self". The woman my Creator made me to be! That's one of the reasons the quote I shared on facebook today touched me so much. And now, I see why you like it too. :)
    Again, thanks for sharing this. Blessings to you!

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