Tuesday, April 7, 2009

One of those "just happened" moments

I was reminded this weekend at my niece's wedding of how quickly time passes, and of how God must love "surprise meetings."

Following the wedding, my family and I nabbed a table for the reception and two lovely gals asked if they could join us. We said "sure" and struck up a conversation and, turns out, I knew these girls--years ago! Their parents were friends of ours when the girls were just toddlers!

Me with Jessica and Jillian Payne
(Aren't they lovely?)

In our early days of marriage, my husband and I lived in Memphis and some of our dear friends were Sydney and Paula Payne. Joe and I eventually moved from Memphis to Texas, then to Colorado, and as the years passed, we lost touch. Well, Sydney and Paula are still in Memphis but their daughters live here in Nashville and we "just happened" to sit at the same table at the wedding.

I say "just happened" in quotes because I believe it was one of those God designed moments. Twenty-something years ago when I last saw these girls and we all played in the park together, God looked ahead, spanning the years, and could already see the moment when we'd be sitting at that same table and our paths would cross again. I believe He was watching, and chuckling, and loving the moment too. 

I firmly believe in God's sovereignty and in His orchestration of our lives. Even in the most minute details. Is everything that happens in our lives by His direct design? Not hardly. But everything that does happen does happen because God allows it. Both the good and the bad. Sometimes that's really hard to come to grips with, I know. But if God is all powerful--and He is--then there's no other explanation.

A song I've been listening to recently is You Never Let Go. My version is sung by Matt Redman. You've heard the song before, I'm sure. It's not new. But it's really ministered to me lately, reminding me that God works in every situation for our eternal good. And that the only way to get through some situations--especially the ones that don't make sense to your heart--is to praise Him throughout. 

Because it's impossible to praise Him and not trust Him too.

What song have you been listening to recently that's really encouraged you in your faith? Do share, please! I want to download some new songs from iTunes and I'd love your recommendations. Last time I asked this I got several great new songs that I've loved.

And by the way, don't tell my family but I've got another pan of those zany brownies in the oven. I'm beginning to think I should have never bought this pan. But I'm going to give these brownies away. Really. Well, at least the ones that don't have edges. :)


  1. Love moments like this!

    I'l take those edgy brownies! LOL

  2. I love me some brownies. I think I just might go home and make some after work... I prefer the center though. =)

    A really good song that I have been listening to over and over is "From the Inside Out". The version that I love is by Together. Another artist that is incredible is Kari Jobe.

  3. I'd share if I could, Linda! ;)

    Daily Bee, I just purchased Kari Jobe's BE STILL. Oh how beautiful! I'd never heard of her before, so thanks for the introduction! (From the Inside Out is one my favs too.)

  4. Tamera,
    The CD's that I have been listening to lately are:
    Alvin Slaughter's CD "Overcomer"
    Favorite song on there is "Loving Kindness" (though the whole CD is very encouraging)
    And Heather Headley's CD "Audience of One". My favorite song on there is "Simply Redeemed".
    I love to worship the Lord and to be in His presence, these 2 songs take you there(smile).
    I'm still praying for you and your family.

  5. Can't thank you enough, Veronica, for introducing me to Alvin Slaughter and Heather Headley! Wonderful! I got the songs you mentioned and also downloaded I Wish. Heather's voice is flawless and the lyrics of Simply Redeemed take you right to the foot of the throne. Thanks for those continued prayers too. Appreciated, friend.

  6. Bring the Rain by MercyMe. It was written for me i'm pretty sure. :)

  7. Oh Sarah, I'm sitting here listening to Bring the Rain (just downloaded it), and am hearing it through the knowledge of all you've been through, sweet friend. God IS so much greater than the pain, as the song says. Thank you for sharing this song with me.

    I am absolutely being blessed to no end by you guys sharing these songs...

    I'm sitting outside right now in the back yard, writing Within My Heart (well, I'm not exactly writing RIGHT this minute *grin*), and am thanking God for each of you. You're helping me in my journey today. Bless you!

  8. Tamera,
    Two songs I'm listening to almost daily are Stop the World by Matthew West and By Your Side by Tenth Avenue North. Ooh Child by Beth Orton is also wonderful.

    Cheering you on,

  9. LOVE By Your Side by Tenth Avenue North, Kelli. Just downloaded that and also got their Love is Here. Beautiful songs! I already had Stop the World but hadn't listened to it in a while, so I'm adding Matthew to my regular play list. :) And I love Ooh child by Beth Orton too. She reminds me a lot of Eva Cassidy, who I adore! I have all of Cassidy's music. What an amazing gift of a voice she shared while here with us.

  10. I have been stuck on both of Jeremy Riddle's cd's - Full Attention and The Now and Not Yet. It would be difficult to choose my favorite song. Christ is Risen is preparing me for Easter Sunday but Prepare the Way, Sweetly Broken, Bless His Name, Stand in Awe,and What Joy is Found have all ministered to me in their own way.

    Just finished reading Beyond This Moment and loved it. I admire the way you are not afraid to write about issues that most Christian writers seem to avoid. Looking forward to Within My Heart.

    BTW, I have lived in the Memphis area all my life and was a Payne before I married. Unfortunately, your friends are not among my relatives as far as I know.

  11. I just finished Beyond This Moment a little while ago. WOW!! It was magnificent. Loved. It.


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