“Nor Do I Condemn You”

One of the greatest struggles of my spiritual life is truly understanding that nothing I do can add or take away from God’s love for me. I am a Pharisee by nature. It is second nature for me to turn grace into legalism and rule keeping. Ever since we decided not to continue with the placement of the little S boy I have battled guilt. How can God love me if I couldn’t do this one thing that I had always advocated for with such passion? I have had wrestling matches in my heart. There has been a fierce  struggle for me to be still before God and trust His unconditional love.

At the concert this past Sunday night we were introduced to a new band: Pas Neos. They started playing this song, Nor Do I Condemn You and I felt undone. I stood and the music washed over me. The words a balm to my soul. Just like the woman accused of adultery, whom Jesus dealt with so tenderly, I am not condemned. God continues to deal with me tenderly. I feel the Spirit speaking to my soul, reminding me that nothing I do (or don’t do) can take away one ounce of His love for me. If I adopted 100 kids, He loves me. If I adopt no kids, He loves me.

As they repeated the last line, I’ve made My face to shine – My countenance; your guiding light. I am the Way, the Truth, the Life I felt truth and comfort and a great deal of peace. I am learning to sit still in God’s presence. To accept His love with no strings attached. To let go of my performance as “a good Christian.” To be who I am, who He made me to be, before Him. His countenance and face can be my guiding light and I can be before Him without fear or shame.

Nor Do I Condemn You (Jn. 8:3-12, 14:6)

I see your soul, I see your guilt. I’ve seen every circumstance that had its hand in how you were built. You’re emptied out – a hollow frame. All your hope has gone along with any love to claim.

And in your heart you wish for death – I’m grieved you find only pain and cruelty in every single breath. Rise again up off the ground – all the stones lie around with no accuser to be found.

Your joy has come like the rising sun. I leave the ninety-nine every time to find the one. Singing comes in the new day’s warmth when passing night unveils your fire-tried form.

I’ve made My face to shine – My countenance; your guiding light. I am the Way, the Truth, the Life.

Written by Pas Neos. Album: The Wheat and the Tares

 

 

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Music, since I have no words

I have been meaning to write here.  But there are so many thoughts swirling in my head, and deep work that God is doing in my heart, that it is hard to know where to begin. Then last week I spent most of the week in bed with with a bad cold. We had a busy weekend and I dragged myself out and about. We had made plans with friends to go to a Future of Forestry concert on Sunday night and I almost canceled because I was so tired. I am so glad that we went anyway. It was more than a concert, it was soul nourishing.  Music can minister to me in very deep and meaningful ways and last night was a gift.

So today, since I can’t seem to find words to write here, enjoy this version of their song Slow Your Breath Down. This song…not sure what it is about it but last night as I stood and let the music and words wash over me I felt deep peace.

This chest is full of memories
Of gold and silver tears
I’ll give you more to own than
All of this
And I’ll give you more than years
For you were once a child of innocence
And I see you just the same
Your burdens couldn’t win or
Lose a thing
Oh, I’d tell you once again
But you’re always on the run
Slow your breath down
Just take it slow
Find your heart now, oh
You can trust and love again
Slow your breath down, just take it slow
Find your smile now, oh
You can trust and love again

If you leave I’ll still be close to you
When all your fears rain down
I’ll take you back a thousand times again
I’ll take you as my own
I would sing you songs of innocence
‘Til the light of morning comes
‘Til the rays of gold and honey cover you
In the sweetness of the dawn
But you’re always on the run

You’re not alone
You’re now a part of me
You feel the cure
I’ll feel the toil it brought you