Sunday, August 15, 2010

Sunday Hymn - From Every Stormy Wind that Blows

I was playing from a hymn arrangement book this morning and this one was joined in a medley with You are My Hiding Place. I'm still working on learning the arrangement but I'm going to play this hymn for the offertory today. I remembered the words being very comforting but I didn't realize until I read them their connection with prayer. I thank God for His mercy seat that we can come to at any time, anywhere.

From Every Stormy Wind That Blows

From every stormy wind that blows,
From every swelling tide of woes,
There is a calm, a sure retreat;
’Tis found beneath the mercy seat.

There is a place where Jesus sheds
The oil of gladness on our heads;
A place than all besides more sweet;
It is the blood bought mercy seat.

There is a scene where spirits blend,
Where friend holds fellowship with friend;
Though sundered far, by faith they meet
Around one common mercy seat.

There, there, on eagles’ wings we soar,
And time and sense seem all no more;
And heaven comes down, our souls to greet,
And glory crowns the mercy seat.

Oh, let my hand forget her skill,
My tongue be silent, cold, and still,
This bounding heart forget to beat,
If I forget the mercy seat!

An a cappella version:

The line that stuck out to me today was "Where friend holds fellowship with friend; Though sundered far, by faith they meet around one common mercy seat." I praise God that we can by faith meet friends from far away around the mercy seat!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Jam and Books

A few people have asked me recently about my blog name. It comes from a quote I read years ago. It's probably about time to quote it again:

"Whenever I get one of those questionnaires and they ask what is your profession, I always put down housewife. It’s an admirable profession, why apologize for it? You aren’t stupid because you’re a housewife. When you’re stirring the jam you can read
Shakespeare." [quoted from The Private World of Tasha Tudor]

I was making raspberry jam today while reading Five Windows by D.E. Stevenson. If you enjoy beautiful writing and interesting characters, check out D.E. Stevenson.

The Praying Life

I just started reading a book called The Praying Life by Paul Miller . So far I'm finding it to be challenging and encouraging.

"The quest for a contemplative life can actually be self-absorbed, focused on my quiet and me. If we love people and have the power to help, then we are going to be busy. Learning to pray doesn't offer us a less busy life; it offers us a less busy heart. In the midst of outer busyness we can develop an inner quiet. Because we are less hectic on the inside, we have a greater capacity to love...and thus to be busy, which in turn drives us even more into a life of prayer. By spending time with our Father in prayer, we integrate our lives with his, with what he is doing in us. Our lives become more coherent. They feel calmer, more ordered, even in the midst of confusion and pressure." (p. 23-24)

"The gospel, God's free gift of grace in Jesus, only works when we realize we don't have it all together. The same is true for prayer. The very thing we are allergic to - our helplessness - is what makes prayer work. It works because we are helpless. We can't do life on our own.

Prayer mirrors the gospel. In the gospel, the Father takes us as we are because of Jesus and gives us his gift of salvation. In prayer, the Father receives us as we are because of Jesus and gives us his gift of help. We look at the inadequacy of our praying and give up, thinking something is wrong with us. God looks at the adequacy of his Son and delights in our sloppy, meandering prayers." (p. 55)