Thursday, January 23, 2014

Fire in my Eyes

****  I originally wrote this January 29, 2011. I found this in the drafts section of my blog…..And I read this and was really just…moved. *****

This Sunday, I will be leading the whole worship part of the service. Choosing the set list, directing the practice, praying…arranging….everything.

This will be my first Sunday. I've done Wednesdays before...but never Sunday.

I'm really excited. At first I thought I would be nervous, but as the weeks went on, I just became even more and more excited. Excited that I get to pick songs more attuned to my vocal comfort level is one thing.

But this is something I actually prayed about several years ago. I even remember when I was praying, because at the time, I was only providing background vocals for our worship team, twice a month.
And I loved it! What a great learning experience! We had two amazing worship pastors who had a very defined role in changing the way I viewed worship, church, "religion", and love. I have always felt so blessed to kind of , unofficially, be mentored vocally and spiritually by these two.

As a year or more passed, I begin to pray that I would be able to sing lead...just one song, perhaps. Weirdly, before that, I had no desire at all to ever be in the forefront...EVER! I was so comfortable where I was.

And almost a month after I begin praying, the worship pastor had the backup vocalists sing an offering song. I think I was about 30 weeks pregnant about the time. And after that..." I dared to pray that one day, I too, would get to lead an entire set. After all...nothing is impossible for God, right? Right!

Anyway...fastforward a few years. Our worship pastors moved on to another calling and for a short while, their brother took over. While this was only intermittent, it served such a great purpose, for all of the remaining people who served on our worship team.

I suppose that I didn't realize that I had grown so comfortable, "in my box." Singing only at certain times and in a certain way. So when our interim worship pastor, told me he wanted me to sing as much as possible, I felt like I was going to have a heart attack. IN fact, one day, he surprised me on Sunday and had me sing lead on a song.

I remember going to the bathroom beforehand, feeling slightly confused and sooo very nervous. I was telling myself, "Alicia, is this really happening. Sure you prayed for this....but you don't have an amazing voice. You don't even have great voice. You are ok at learning your back up harmonies....but you really don't know how to do this...."

And then, I told myself, " But you did pray for this. And God answered, so you really have no choice but to do this - the best that you can. After all...its not a competition. It's not a performance. It's worship, and the only thing that matters is a heart after worship, an intentional heart, and obedience to God and to the ones He has appointed over you."

And all of a sudden, my nervousness disappeared. And after the interim worship pastor left, I  pushed even more. And more. And more out of my comfort zone. 

ANd then all of a sudden, I was leading songs, assisting our worship pastor once a month and when he was out of town….and continuing with background vocals as well. And not only that. Words were revealed to me. Entire prayers were spoken. Straight from God's mouth to mine.

Yes me...the person who simply did not pray out loud.


But what is amazing is this. 3 years ago, I was listening to a song, Waiting for the Rain, by Misty Edwards. All of a sudden, a picture of me singing that song, on stage, came into my head. 

And this Sunday, I am actually singing this song. 

Today, as I am preparing for tomorrow, I know only one thing. Regardless of the insecurity that threatens me at times, regardless at the striking ordinary-ness of my voice, regardless of how many people are there, regardless of how I think tomorrow should go.....

Regardless of this…

All I really want is to hear His voice. To shine with His love. To speak, with Fire in my eyes.


You have shown me Your love. Clearly.

You have brought life back into death…even before my very own eyes.

Fill me with so much love for others that my heart breaks into pieces...

Show me how to show your love to the ones who do not know love...

Show me my own selfishness, which keeps me distracted from what you called me to do...

Show me how I am so corrupted by everything around me; How the luxury of my own world consumes me and hardens my heart...

Show me the ones who claim they know you, but are only lying snakes, spewing nothing but hate...

Show me the ones who claim they know you, but are slaves to their own agenda, whether personal or political…

Show me the ones who claim they know you, but are masters of smooth talk and deceit...

Keep me from falling prey to them…

Give me words to speak; your words are an arsenal for my own protection. Give me wisdom to understand your words…. an open heart to hear you…

But mostly...break me for your purpose. Remake me for your glory. Show me YOUR way.
not mine.
not the world's,
but, Yours.

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