Sunday, December 9, 2012

My Heart's Prayer

Let not my heart be numb to You
Let not my lips be dumb to You
Cut me deeply, Lord, let me feel it
My dearest sin, Lord, please reveal it

My tears of sorrow, wipe them dry
 Attend Thine ear unto my cry
Have me desire Your will alone
Instead of secretly wanting mine be done

Pierce my soul with Your holiness, please,
In contrast to myself, let it bring me to my knees
Fill me to the rim with your fullness, oh God
‘Til lesser loves have no room to climb their way to the top

Robe me in your righteousness, teaching me to trust
No one else can do a work in me because only You must
Cause me to submit to Your word and then rest
Knowing that, with every trial, You’re seeking my best

Make Heaven seem sweeter while this world grows dim
Saying, “I will fear no ill, because I’m depending on Him!”
Humble me to the dust, if that’s the measure You need
To have absolute sway over my being and lead

I don’t know what You have in my path up ahead
But give me the strength to not worry or dread
Increase my faith and my thankfulness, drown me in love
And prepare me for my ultimate goal, Thy glory above

©By: Allix Ryan Brunson 12/9/12

Thursday, November 1, 2012

What a Privilege

What a privilege to carry
Everything to God in prayer
Wait, please stop, I think there was
A word you might have missed in there

We sing it all the time and yet
Are we truly taking time to see?
Perhaps we should rewind a bit
If you skimmed past that word like me

That word is privilege, see it now?
It eludes me time and time again
I let it slip right through the grips
Of my easily distracted brain

The blood Christ spilt on my behalf
I disregard too oft I fear
He didn’t begrudgingly mount the cross
But with joy He willingly died for me there

With overwhelming love He bought
My salvation with His sacrifice
And I convince myself with lies
That a prayer without fervor will suffice

He is the Mediator between us and God
Without His death, there would be no way
For us to ascend to the throne of grace
Yet we have the audacity to forget to pray

 Lord, grant me the purpose and joy you felt
When, covering my sins, you died for me there
And Lord, remind me it’s a privilege to carry
Everything to God in prayer

©By: Allix Ryan Brunson 11/1/12

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Paradoxes from the Valley of Vision


Under the conviction of thy Spirit I learn that
the more I do, the worse I am,
the more I know, the less I know,
the more holiness I have, the more sinful I am,
the more I love, the more there is to love.
    O wretched man that I am!
Oh Lord,
    I have a wild heart,
    and cannot stand before Thee;
I am like a bird before a man.
How little I love Thy truth and ways!
I neglect prayer,
    by thinking I have prayed enough and earnestly,
    by knowing Thou hast saved my soul.
Of all hypocrites, grant that I may not be
    an evangelical hypocrite,
who sins more safely because grace abounds,
who tells his lusts that Christ's blood
    cleanseth them,
  who reasons that God cannot cast him into hell,
    for he is saved,
  who loves evangelical preaching, churches,
    Christians, but lives unholily.
My mind is a bucket without a bottom,
  with no spiritual understanding,
  no desire for the Lord's Day,
  ever learning but never reaching the truth,
  always at the gospel-well but never holding water.
My conscience is without conviction or contrition,
  with nothing to repent of.
My will is without power of decision or resolution.
My heart is without affection, and full of leaks.
My memory has no retention,
    so I forget easily the lessons learned,
    and Thy truths seep away.
Give me a broken heart that yet carries home
  the water of grace.  

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Blissfully Overwhelmed

In my life I have come to see
Some things of God are too much for me
To ever fully grasp or learn
Though all within my soul doth yearn
His grace, for instance, unfathomable still
How it crushed my nature, broke my will
Pulling a sinner from the mouth of Hell
It’s beyond comprehension though others I tell
That God the Almighty, the Creator and Just
Grants me His faith, salvation, and trust
I’m blissfully overwhelmed by it all
That redemption was purchased after man’s fall
Christ’s sacrificial love for a wretch like me
With all my might I believe it, though unbelievable it seems
Though I cannot attain to the heights of its glory
I rest my undying soul on the Cornerstone of this Story
And even if I can’t grasp the depth, I don’t mind
Because if I could I’m afraid I would find
It far less as glorious, majestic, and great
Filling the limited knowledge of my human estate
If it was easy for me to now understand
It would all have to be low enough for the wisdom of man
Therefore I am glad to be awestruck and lowly
I am thankful God’s ways are Separate and Holy
I would rather it be far over my head
That I might ever cling tighter to my Savior instead

©Allix Ryan Brunson 8/11/12 2:45am

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

The Rescue was Accomplished.

Typically I only share things on this blog that I have written but when I read this excerpt from the book When God Weeps by Steven Estes and Joni Eareckson Tada, I was simply so deeply moved, I had to post it. As Joshua Harris responds, "As you read, refuse to let the scene be familiar. Let its reality shock you and break your heart."

That face that Moses had begged to see--was forbidden to see--was slapped bloody (Exodus 33:19-20). The thorns that God had sent to curse the earth's rebellion now twisted around His own brow...
"On your back with you!" One raises a mallet to sink in the spike. But the soldier's heart must continue pumping as he readies the Prisoner's wrist. Someone must sustain the soldier's life minute by minute, for no man has this power on his own. Who supplies breath to his lungs? Who gives energy to his cells? Who holds his molecules together? Only by the Son do "all things hold together" (Colossians 1:17). The Victim wills that the soldier live on--He grants the warriors continued existence. The man swings.
As the man swings, the Son recalls how He and the Father first designed the medial nerve of the human forearm--the sensations it would be capable of. The design proves flawless--the nerves perform exquisitely.
"Up you go!" They lift the cross. God is on display in His underwear and can scarcely breathe. 
But these pains are a mere warm-up to His other and growing dread. He begins to feel a foreign sensation. Somewhere during this day an unearthly foul odor began to waft, not around His nose, but His heart. He feels dirty. Human wickedness starts to crawl upon His spotless being--the living excrement from our souls. The apple of His Father's eye turns brown with rot.
His Father! He must face His Father like this!
From heaven the Father now rouses Himself like a lion disturbed, shakes His mane, and roars against the shriveling remnant of a man hanging on a cross. Never has the Son seen the Father look at Him so, never felt even the least of His hot breath. But the roar shakes the unseen world and darkens the visible sky.
The Son does not recognize these eyes.
"Son of Man! Why have you behaved so? You have cheated, lusted, stolen, gossiped--murdered, envied, hated, lied. You have cursed, robbed, overspent, overeaten--fornicated, disobeyed, embezzled, and blasphemed. Oh, the duties You have shirked, the children You have abandoned! Who has ever so ignored the poor, so played the coward, so belittled My Name? Have you ever held Your razor tongue? What a self-righteous, pitiful drunk--You,who molest young boys, peddle killer drugs, travel in cliques, and mock Your parents. Who gave You the boldness to rig elections, foment revolutions, torture animals, and worship demons? Does the list never end!? Splitting families, raping virgins, acting smugly, playing the pimp--buying politicians, practicing exhortation, filming pornography, accepting bribes. You have burned down buildings, perfected terrorist tactics, founded false religions, traded in slaves--relishing each morsel and bragging about it all. I hate, loathe these things in You! Disgust for everything about You consumes Me! Can You not feel My wrath?"
Of course the Son is innocent. He is blamelessness itself. The Father watches as His heart's treasure, the mirror image of Himself, sinks drowning into raw, liquid sin. Jehovah's stored rage against humankind from every century explodes in a single direction. 
"Father! Father! Why have You forsaken Me?!"
But heaven stops its ears. The Son stares up at the One who cannot, who will not, reach down or reply.
The Trinity had planned it. The Son endured it. The Spirit enabled Him. The Father rejected the Son whom He loved. Jesus, the God-man from Nazareth, perished. The Father accepted His sacrifice for sin and was satisfied.
The Rescue was accomplished.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Midnight Inspiration by Herman Melville :)

I read this excerpt from Moby Dick last night: 

"They were one man, not thirty. For as the one ship that held them all; though it was put together of all contrasting things -- oak, and maple, and pine wood; iron, and pitch, and hemp -- yet all these ran into each other in the one concrete hull, which shot on its way, both balanced and directed by the long central keel; even so, all the individualities of the crew, this man's valor, that man's fear; guilt and guiltiness, all varieties were welded into oneness and were all directed to that fatal goal which Ahab their one lord and keel did point to."
-Herman Melville
Moby Dick

This quote may not sound especially soul stirring or inspirational to you in the middle of a Wednesday afternoon, but let me shine some light on it to let you know what I saw in it as I lay in bed reading on a Tuesday night, half dosing off, before finally throwing up the white flag, turning off my green goose neck lamp on my night stand and letting the veil of darkness that covered me along with my 6 blankets {hey, its cold here in Texas these days!} work its magic on my brain that was slowly beginning to stew over those 104 words. Had it been any other night, I might have let that paragraph flow together with the rest of the epic tale of that sea captain, Ahab, that so desperately against all odds strove to slay that infamous White Whale. But for whatever reason, my imaginative mind would not let the thought waves that were crashing against the shore of the front of my head go quietly back into the vast ocean of my subconscious, no. As I lay quietly, occasionally adjusting my pillow just in case I wanted to give up all hope on my stirring brain and bury those thoughts in the grave of much needed sleep that covers all sane musings with dramatic dreams made out of left over thought currents that usually tie themselves together in difficult knots of strangeness and fantasy.
So, what was I thinking? Or what was it that quite literally jumped out at me, rather?
This quote plucked out of the pages of that novel that is arguably one of Mr. Melville's greatest works, as well as one of the hall of fame residents of American Literature made me think of none other than the Body of Christ. The description of that ship, made out of an assortment of woods of all different kinds of hardness, quality, color, etc. coming together to make one sea-worthy vessel. And then the comparison between it and the very crew that stood on that deck that had become like one, driven by one goal. To kill aforementioned White Whale. But wait, if I wasn't mistaken, that was Ahab's goal. Yet they all strove for its fruition as if it was the song of the depths of each of their individual souls. Their devotion to Ahab lead to their devotion to reach the destination he so dearly longed for. This wove itself into a beautiful allegory in my mind and reminded me of how, just so, we as the Body of Christ, who in and of our own selves have never desired to do anything but serve ourselves and bring ourselves happiness and yet when we are arrested by the love of Christ we then are driven to follow after Him and accomplish anything and everything that He strives to accomplish. And so, with that thought came this poem...hope I haven't lost you in that outpouring of random words. ;)

"For as we have members in one body, and all members have not the same office: So we, being many, are one body in Christ, and everyone members one of another."
Romans 12:4-5

The Bible calls us the Body of Christ
An individual unit, though many the members
We’re fashioned as one seamless form with one passion
Like a giant flame made of countless hot embers

We’re called to have love, resulting in peace
We’ve been forgiven so much, God expects us to show it
 But there’s a frightening thing that creeps in unannounced
This thing is called “discord”, and I think we all know it

Discord is fed by large helpings of self
Simmered over the fires of our natures of sin
Eventually it’s topped with hatred and anger
Bitterness and resentment are soon sprinkled in

We might be thinking unison, but God desires for us unity
We have singularity: the same Lord, purpose, and goal
But let’s put down our fingers, pointing outward to blame
And focus more on what Scripture says is our role

We don’t need our rulers, stop measuring her skirt
Instead let’s open those God-breathed out pages
Let’s measure instead hearts and fruit by His standards
  Trusting His guidance because He is Rock of Ages

Let’s silence our whispers about this one or that one
Joining together in one loud jubilant voice
Praising our God who has blessed everyone of us
With blessings unfathomable causing great need to rejoice

Yes, we are all different in various types, various ways
We will never be exactly like anyone else
Does that bring us to the feet of the God who put us together?
Or does it drive us deeper into the pit of ourselves?

The gospel that is precious to all of the saints
Speaks of that sacrifice to which, by faith, we all cling
The Christ that is God, that we serve and we honor
Has, by His actions, taught us a staggering thing

He was and is perfect, Just, Holy, and God
But He subjected Himself to the violent hands of mere men
And we, who are nothing in comparison, truly
Act like we deserve much better than Him

How wrong we are, brethren!
If only we could all learn to see
That He was trying to tell us something
When He hung, dying on that tree

When we focus on the sin natures that we all sadly have
It’s hard to think of living harmoniously with ease
But if we refocused on the undeserved shared stamp of His grace
We might then know how it is that we can strive together in peace

©by Allix Ryan Brunson 2/8/12

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Christ's Sufficiency

Christ is sufficient in all things
You will never reach the end of His power
It expands past every obstacle before us
And makes the Devil to cower

You cannot swim to the bottom
Of His ocean of love and care
When you dive as deep as you can
More of His love will await you there

His holiness also is insurmountable
Every time you climb a bit higher
There will always be a crag to reach for
Just above where you aspire

His compassion is like an endless road
Though you walk, or jog, or sprint
It will stretch farther into the horizon
Where a glimpse of His Glory continues to glint

His atonement is perfectly circular
Encompassing us all around
From farthest east to yonder west
Our sins cannot be found

His Glory is like a great shining light
That will never grow dim or fade
And we will never see the end of its shine
Or sense the beginning of shade

Enough seems not the right word
Adequate also falls short
Sufficient is indeed what Christ is
Though in a way He seems more

Nothing else can fulfill purpose like Him
Everything else falls short in some fashion
But He will never reach the edge or end
Of His holiness, glory, or compassion

©Allix Brunson 11/13/11
Based on this sermon