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When We Meet Jesus

This post is from February 2006 and represents my thoughts on one of my all time favorite worship songs, "We Fall Down" by Chri Tomlin.  Happy worshipping!

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Have you ever thought of what you will do when you come face to face with Jesus someday?  I'm sure that anyone who has ever listened to the words of the popular Mercy Me song entitled "I Can Only Imagine" has played the scene out in their minds.  I know I have.

Today's song reflection is on "We Fall Down" by Chris Tomlin.  It is such a simple song, but the words and music almost always bring a tear to my eye.  I pray that my humble thoughts presented here can give anyone who reads this a richer worship experience.  May God bless you!


We fall down, we lay our crowns at the feet of Jesus;
The greatness of mercy and love, at the feet of Jesus.

And we cry holy, holy, holy,
And we cry holy, holy, holy,
And we cry holy, holy, holy is the Lamb.


We Fall Down...

The bible says at the name of Jesus, every knee shall bow and every tongue shall confess that He is Lord (Phil 2:10-11).  We will all give an account of ourselves to God (Ro 14:11).  Talking about everyone else is one thing, but what about me?  What will I do when I finally see Jesus face to face?  Being a Christian, I'm not fearing that day, but I am still awestruck.  Somehow, I don't see myself falling down at His feet, but I bet I lower myself down pretty fast!  I doubt I could stand in front of my Lord and Savior looking into His tender eyes knowing how selfishly I've lived my life at times.   I doubt I could stand in front of Jesus dry-eyed, seeing for myself the scars in His hands while realizing once again that those scars were my fault.  Could you? Yes, I think I would be probably be face down until I was told to look up.

We Lay Our Crowns...

Oh, the crowns.  The heavenly rewards we receive for service to God.  I won't go into all of the different kinds mentioned in the bible.  Suffice it to say, that they represent the only thing we have to give to God - our lives of service to and adoration of Him.  What a picture in this song of laying our lives at Jesus' feet, giving back to Him everything that we have been given.  Am I giving enough of my life now so that I will have something to give back to Him then?

At the Feet of Jesus...

Face down on the ground, at Jesus' feet.  That is where I will be on that day.  Jesus' disciples, upon seeing Him as resurrected for the first time "held him by the feet, and worshipped him." (Mt 28:9).  Perhaps the most memorable picture of someone at Jesus' feet was when the woman sinner, wiped Jesus' feet with her tears.  Let's take a look.

And behold, a woman in the city, which was a sinner, when she knew that Jesus sat at meat in the Pharisee's house, brought an alabaster box of ointment, And stood at his feet behind him weeping, and began to wash his feet with tears, and did wipe them with the hairs of her head, and kissed his feet, and anointed them with the ointment. (Luke 7:37-38)

I won't have the ointment, but I bet I'll have the tears.   Does your love for Jesus compare with hers?

The Greatness of Mercy and Love...

To me, the gifts that I can bring to Jesus from my life and service to Him came only from his great mercy and love for me.  Only through Him, using His gifts with love to others, will I have a "crown" to lay at His feet.

And We Cry Holy, Holy, Holy...

Speechless, facedown and tearful, that is probably what I will be when I finally meet my Lord.  I doubt I will be saying "Holy, holy, holy" to anyone.  I think I might just leave that up to the other "creatures" spoken of in John's vision shown in Revelation 4.   I will be letting my words be few!   What about you?

Revelation 4:8-11

8 And the four beasts had each of them six wings about him: and they were full of eyes within: and they rest not day and night, saying, Holy, holy, holy, Lord God Almighty, which was, and is, and is to come.

9 And when those beasts give glory and honour and thanks to him that sat on the throne, who liveth for ever and ever, 10 The four and twenty elders fall down before him that sat on the throne, and worship him that sat on the throne, and worship him that liveth for ever and ever, and cast their crowns before the throne, saying,

11 Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for they pleasure they are and were created.

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Janna Rust is a Life Coach and Speaker dedicated to encouraging others towards lives God intends for them.  For more information, visit her at www.purposefulpartnerships.com.


Our Great God

The next few days I will be out of town at a Women's Ministry conference and I thought I'd share some of my favorite pasts posts.  The following is from March 2006, and is a reflection on the song "How Great is Our God" by Chris Tomlin.  Enjoy!

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So just how great is our God anyway?  Can we really even fathom his majesty?  Try as I might, I know that I can't even come close, but it is fun trying nonetheless.  In my head of late I keep singing the song "How Great is Our God" by Chris Tomlin.  It is a simple yet powerful song if we really delve into thinking about God's majesty.  So guess what?  I'm going to write about it today.

In heaven as described in the book of Revelation we find lots of creatures singing to God, among them the angels.  Taking a look in Revelation 5:3-4 we see the angels singing the song of Moses:

And they sing the song of Moses the servant of God, and the song of the Lamb, saying, Great and marvelous are thy works, Lord God Almighty; just and true are thy ways, thou King of saints.  Who shall not fear thee, O Lord, and glorify thy name? for thou only art holy: for all nations shall come and worship before thee; for thy judgments are made manifest.

God is the same now and forever.  The same song that Moses sang about God's majesty is fitting for the angels in heaven in the future to come.  Now on to Chris Tomlin's version of the Moses song in "How Great is Our God":

The splendor of the King,
Clothed in majesty;
Let all the earth rejoice, all the earth rejoice.

He wraps Himself in light,
And darkness tries to hide,
And trembles at his voice, and trembles at His voice.

Can darkness hide our dear Lord, our powerful Lion who is also as gentle as a Lamb?  I think not.  His judgments are true.  He is worthy to be praised, adored and feared.  His works are marvelous and beyond description.  And get this --- darkness cannot hide Him because He is light!

Revelation 22:5 And there shall be not night there; and they need no candle, neither the light of the sun; for the Lord God giveth them light: and they shall reign for ever and ever. 

Friends, the "they" is WE who are saved.  No wonder all the earth will be rejoicing in God's splendor and majesty.  With no more dying, no more crying - look out, I'm going to break into a rendition of "Soon and Very Soon" - He is definitely worthy of our praise.  Sing with me...

How great is our God!
Sing with me:
How great is our God!
And all will see
How great, how great is our God!

Are you having fun yet? I sure am with you and I can't even see your faces. :)  Now think about God's never changing nature.   God is good...all the time!   He has always been and He will always be.  After all, our God who cannot lie, says it Himself in Revelation 1:8: "I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, saith the Lord, which is, and which was, and which is to come, the Almighty."

Age to age He stands,
And time is in His hands;
Beginning and the End, Beginning and the End.

The Godhead, three in one,
Father, Spirit, Son
The Lion and the Lamb, the Lion and the Lamb

One day every one will see that Jesus is God and Lord over all (Ph 2:9-11).  I just love happy endings, don't you?  No more pain, no more suffering, and Jesus finally gets all of the worship He so richly deserves.

Philippans 2:9 Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name:  10 That at the name of Jesus every knee shall bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; 11 And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

Well, our singing is almost over as we have one last stanza.  As you read it or sing it with me, think about all you've just read.  Jesus is God and God is definitely great and worthy to be praised.  Let your heart sing.  How great is Your God?

Name above all names,
Worthy of all praise.
My heart will sing: How great is our God!

NOTE: If you feel like shouting to the Lord, click here.


From Laughter to Mourning

Lament and mourn and weep!  Let your laughter be turned to mourning and your joy to gloom. Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he will lift you up. 

James 4:9-10 (NKJV)

Not much is certain in life.  Investments rise and fall in value.  Relationships ebb and flow like the tide.  God's Word says that we should not boast about tomorrow, "whereas you do not know what will happen tomorrow." (James 4:14)  Rather than boasting about tomorrow, thinking we've got everything figured out, James 4:15 says we should remember that we are only given in life what God wills us to have.  Its too bad we can't know in advance what God intends for us to have!

When life doesn't go our way, we have some choices to make.  We can brush off the circumstance, and keep going on as if nothing ever happened or we can examine what rocked our world and try to learn from the experience.  I think that the above passage is talking about this type of self-reflection, an intentional look inward to our innermost thoughts to see how we stack up to God's standard.  In this, we ourselves turn our laughter into mourning.  Life is serious business, and sometimes we have to temporarily leave our care-free existence behind in order to live more intentionally the way God would have us to live.   

I've recently had my world "rocked".  The situation itself has turned some, but not all, of my laughter into mourning and I have also chosen to intentionally do the same as I reflect on my attitudes and behavior and how they impact those around me.  As the psalmist writes in Ps 18:14, I pray "Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in Your sight, O Lord, my strength and my Redeemer."  Today, I sit humbled before the Lord, waiting on His promise to lift me up.  He promises to lift us up.  He will turn our mourning back to laughter.

Going deep:
1) When was the last time you asked God to reveal to you where you need to change?

2) How do you react to bumps in your road of life? Is there something you need to change about yourself?

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Janna Rust is a Professional Coach and Speaker dedicated to encouraging others towards lives God intends for them.  For more information, visit her at www.purposefulpartnerships.com.


What Must We Do to Be Good?

Then they asked him, "What must we do to do the works God requires?"
Jesus answered, "The work of God is this: to believe in the one he has sent." - John 6:28-29 NIV

Jesus' followers were confused.  All of their lives they had been "do-ers", reading the Jewish law and attempting to follow each custom to the letter.  It is no wonder that they asked Jesus what they could "do".   I'm guessing that Jesus doesn't answer in the way they expect him to.  Jesus says that to do the work that God requires, they must believe in the one he has sent.  They must believe in Jesus. 

But what does believing in Jesus really mean in this context?  The disciples asked a follow up question  by asking Jesus what sign He would perform so that they would believe.  Funny that they would ask this after they had just been beneficiaries of a "sign" when Jesus fed the 5,000!  Jesus replies by referring to Moses and the manna from heaven and telling them that he was the "true bread from heaven".  They already had enough evidence to believe. 

We too, have enough evidence to believe, we just need to carefully and repeatedly examine the evidence.  God's Word is the "evidence".  The more we spend time with God through His word, getting to know the promises He makes, the miracles He works, and His instructions to us for a full life, the more we will believe.  He will change us the more we ask Him too. 

As a majority, we Christians have lost our focus regarding our number one priority -- getting to know Jesus - substituting it for a "doing" faith, trying to follow a system of rules for righteous living.  We are putting the cart before the horse.  We can go to Jesus and ask Him to help us believe so that He can do the work.

Note: For more information regarding this topic, see my related post this week at Truth Talks, "Is Being a Christian About Being Good?"

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Janna Rust is a Professional Coach and Speaker dedicated to encouraging others towards lives God intends for them.  For more information, visit her at www.purposefulpartnerships.com.


Why Do We Follow Jesus?

Jesus answered them and said, "Most assuredly, I say to you, you seek Me, not because you saw the signs, but because you ate of the loaves and were filled." - John 6:26 NKJV

We can fool some people some of the time, be we can never fool Jesus, no matter how crafty we are with our words or behavior.  When we try to fool Jesus, we can also be assured that He will set us straight when He catches us paying attention to what He has to say.  Jesus' followers found themselves receiving rebuke from Jesus just one day after Jesus had fed 5,000of them with five loaves of bread and two fish. 

What is interesting to me about the scene is that before Jesus rebukes them for their motives, there is no indication given in the passage as to the reason that those followers were following Jesus.  However, Jesus knew that they weren't seeking Him to get to know Him, but rather to fill their hungry bellies with food.  They were seeking after Jesus because of what He could give them, not for who He was.  Why do you seek after God?

God does want to provide good things for His children, but it is clear that He wants us to get to know Him for who He is, and to seek more for our lives than what we need to take care of our physical needs.  Right after Jesus revealed that He knew the true motives of His followers, He told them what they should really be seeking after when he said

"Do not labor for the food which perishes, but for the food which endures to everlasting life, which the Son of Man will give you..." - John 6:27 NKJV

The "food which endures" is Jesus, the bread of life.  When take steps to get to know Him and appreciate Him for who He is, we will receive from Him more than we can imagine in the form of godly character and eternal riches that will never fade away.

Going deeper:

1) How often do you thank God for who He is rather than the specific things He has done for you?

2) What is your motive for following Jesus?  To serve Him or to receive from Him?

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Janna Rust is a Professional Coach and Speaker dedicated to encouraging others towards lives God intends for them.  For more information, visit her at www.purposefulpartnerships.com.


On the Air - A Woman's Joy

I had an interesting experience last week while I was doing a Stonecroft speaking circuit that I thought I'd share with the few readers I have.   A local Christian TV station in Quincy, IL, interviewed me for their broadcast of "A Woman's Joy".  That was definitely a first!   

They weren't interviewing me because I was special, however.  It turns out that the station manager of the TV station interviews all of the Stonecroft speakers on her program about what God has done in their lives.  If anyone is interested in watching the live video stream of this program at 9:00 CST, Saturday, October 18, click here and follow instructions to view the broadcast.   (NOTE: To view the broadcast, you need to be linking at the time stated.)

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Janna Rust is a Professional Coach and Speaker dedicated to encouraging others towards lives God intends for them.  For more information, visit her at www.purposefulpartnerships.com.


Man Does Not Know His Time

I returned and saw under the sun that-

The race is not to the swift,
Nor the battle to the strong,
Nor bread to the wise,
Nor riches to men of understanding;
Nor favor to men of skill;
But time and chance happen to them all.
For man also does not know his time:
Like fish taken in a cruel net,
Like birds caught in a snare,
So the sons of men are snared in an evil time,
When it falls suddenly upon them.
Ecc 9:11-12 NKJV

My heart goes out and my prayers go up to the family & friends of Tisha Yearout, a member of Nicklaus Golf Club, who was killed in a car accident on Monday.  According to the Kansas City Star, some of the details are as follows:

A 46 year-old Overland Park woman was killed Monday afternoon in southern Johnson County when the car she was riding in hit a tree...Tisha Yearout's husband, who was driving, swerved to avoid a deer and hit the tree...The husband was unhurt, but Yearout, who was in the front passenger's seat, was killed."

This could be any one of us.  We never know what is coming next in our lives do we? One day our lives are intact, the next day they could be shattered by tragedy.  Since we don't know when our "time" will come, we need to redeem the time that we have, considering the things that are most important - our relationships with others and our relationships with God.  As Ecclesiastes 9:11 says, time and chance happen to us all.  None of us are exempt.  A part or all of our lives can be taken from us without a warning, and all we are left to think is "Why?" Sometimes we may never know why.  It is then that we can find comfort, even though sometimes that is easier said than done, through our relationship with God, knowing that He is in control. 

To ponder:

1) How can you live your life to the fullest now?

2) What do you need to do to build your trust in God's control over your world?

3) Are you redeeming your time?

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Janna Rust is a Professional Coach and Speaker dedicated to encouraging others towards lives God intends for them.  For more information, visit her at www.purposefulpartnerships.com.


Focus on Today

"Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things.  Sufficient for the day is its own trouble." - Mt 6:34 NKJV

It only takes a brief glance at the stockbrokers on Wall Street to see that there can be trouble enough in one day to sufficiently wreak havoc on the nerves.  Up and down and down the stock market goes.  The world's financial markets are indeed in a mess.  We are all concerned, but what are we to do?

Jesus lectures about worry in the 6th chapter of Matthew as part of the famous "Sermon on the Mount".  I have to think that He was speaking of financial troubles because the mention of worry occurs after He exhorts the crowd to get their priorities straight and focus on working for spiritual treasures rather than earthly riches.  (Mt 6:19-21)  After preaching that man can't serve both God and worldliness, He tells His followers not to worry about food, shelter and clothing.  He says that God will provide for them just as He provides for nature's creatures.  These words are perfect for today as the unemployment rate is soaring and investment values are plummeting.  People are definitely worried.

Does worry really accomplish anything?  Most often it does not, except for maybe bringing on a migraine or high blood pressure.  Jesus gave some good advice here, advice we'd all be wise to follow.  Following a mental parade of "what ifs" running around in our minds is not only unhealthy and unproductive, it would appear that it is unbiblical.  Therefore, we need to let God worry about the future while we take care of the present.  It is always easier to tackle problems as they come because then they are known. 

What problems are on your mind?  How often do you find yourself worrying?  Take some time today and read Matthew 6:19-34.  Write down one of these verses on a notecard or post it note to have handy when worry comes your way.  God's Word can calm your anxious mind.

For further thought:

One method of dealing with fear or worry is to try to imagine what the worse case scenario might be in your situation.  If you can live with the absolute worse case, which most likely won't come to pass, then your worries will be substantially relieved.

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Janna Rust is a Professional Coach and Speaker dedicated to encouraging others towards lives God intends for them.  For more information, visit her at www.purposefulpartnerships.com.