Category Archives: Song-inspired

Faith over Fear

By Kristen Entwistle

We’re all afraid of something.

The dark.  Water.   Falling.  Public speaking.  Looking like a fool.  Spiders.

Disappointing our friends or family.  Fear of what others will think.  Fear of loss.  Fear of failure.

Fear can be a powerful motivator – one that keeps us trapped in awful situations with no escape.  One that keeps us from doing something outside our comfort zone.

Fear can keep us from living life to the fullest.

Fear can keep us from following the will of God.

Fear is a natural human emotion.  “Do not fear”  or “Do not be afraid” appear not once, not twice, but 365 times in Scripture.  It’s something that we need to hear, apparently.  And we need to hear it a lot.

It’s scary to step out of your comfort zone.  It’s scary to move away from everything you know for school or a job.  It’s terrifying to be the only one who will stand up for Who they believe in.  Stepping out in faith usually starts with fear.

Fear can enslave us, keep us from ever moving forward.  Fear can paralyze us, keeping us from spreading God’s love and Truth.  Fear can root itself in our lives and keep us trapped in abusive relationships, dead end jobs, and bad situations.

But faith is bigger than fear.

Our God is bigger than any fear that stands in our way.  Our God is stronger than any wave that threatens to knock us down.

Abram was certainly afraid when God called him to leave everything he knew and pick up and move.  Noah was certainly afraid when God told him to build a boat.  Moses was afraid when God called him to deliver the Israelites from Egypt.  The prophets feared for their lives as they spread the words of the Lord.  Mary was afraid when the angel told her that she would give birth to the Christ.  Paul was certainly afraid on many occasions during his ministry.  John must have been terrified when he received the vision of Revelation.

If these men and women could place their faith in God, a God many of them had never seen, how much more should we, who have seen death defeated by Christ, the curtain torn in two, and Christ raised, put our faith in Him?

He has called us His children, His people, His chosen, His beloved.  He has called us to be free.  We are no longer slaves to fear.  It doesn’t rule our lives.  It doesn’t trap us, consume us, or dictate our actions.  If we place our faith in the One who has conquered death, we have no reason to fear.  He will not let us fall.  He will not fail us.

Fear will always be a part of our lives.  But we are not slave to it anymore.  Praise God.

From the inside out

By Kristen Entwistle

Yesterday was a rough day.  This week has been difficult.  This month…tough.  This year…don’t even get me started.  Rough doesn’t even begin to describe it.  And yet through all of it, I’ve seen God work – in my life and in others.  And He’s taught me a lot, as always.  But it certainly has not been an easy road.

On Wednesday last week, I got to praise team practice, weary, worn, and in need of a friend.  As I opened the door to the sanctuary, I heard Peter and Jim playing From the Inside Out.  It’s a song I’ve known for a long time, but we introduced it to our congregation this week.

The words stopped me in my tracks.

A thousand times I’ve failed
Still your mercy remains
Should I stumble again
Still I’m caught in your grace
Everlasting, your light will shine when all else fades
Never ending, your glory goes beyond all fame

I’m pretty sure that a thousand times is a gross underestimation of how many times I’ve screwed up in my 24 years of life.  And yet EVERY time, God picks me up, dusts me off, and puts me right side up again.  EVERY time.  And His grace truly is enough.  Enough for me.  Even though I’m not perfect, even though I don’t believe that I am worth anything sometimes, even though I fail, and I fall, even though I am broken and bruised and battered and worn – God still chooses me.  He still uses me.

Your will above all else
My purpose remains
The art of losing myself in bringing you praise
Everlasting, your light will shine when all else fades
Never ending, your glory goes beyond all fame

I don’t know about you, but sometimes trying to decipher the will of God seems like wading through jello.  Jello.  But the will of God is still what I strive for above all else.  But it’s hard to strive for something that you don’t really understand, don’t get.  When the questions pile up, when the struggles seem too hard to bear, when the rain seems never-ending – it’s easier to cry out to God asking, “Why?” than to say, “Your will be done.”  But Christ, our example, showed us the way when, in the Garden of Gethsemane, he cried out to the Father, asking Him to take this cup, but ultimately saying, “Your will be done.”  So, Father God, Your will be done in my life.  No matter how difficult it may be.

In my heart, in my soul
I give you control
Consume me from the inside out
Let justice and praise
Become my embrace
To love you from the inside out

Perhaps these lines are the ones that really hit me: In my heart, in my soul, I give you control.  I like to be able to control things.  But I’ve got to let go of the illusion of control because, let’s be honest, if I truly had control of my life, it would be a disaster.  Fortunately, Christ is the one in control of my life.  But my desire for control is really a measure of my distrust.  When I try to take control, I’m saying, “God, I really think I could do this better.  I know what I need better than you do.  Your will is actually better in my hands.  I don’t trust you with this.”  But the thing is, I do trust God.  Wholeheartedly.  With everything.  I’m human.  I’m going to want control sometimes.  I’m going to take it into my own hands and screw it up.  But just like the beginning of this song says, A thousand times I’ve failed, still your mercy remains.  So I’m letting go of my desire for control.  I want the world to see Christ when they see me.  Christ is the center of my life, my all, my everything.  Consume me from the inside out, Lord.  

Everlasting, your light will shine when all else fades
Never ending, your glory goes beyond all fame
And the cry of my heart is to bring you praise
From the inside out
Lord my soul cries out

Because the cry of my heart is to bring you praise.  To love the Lord with ALL of my heart, ALL of my soul, ALL of my mind, and ALL of my strength.  To live my life for the One who saved me, who pursued me, who bought me for a price – His life – who continues to pick me up when I fall, who continues to reach out His hand to call me back when I have walked away.  Whose grace is enough for me.

When I left praise team practice, I was still weary, worn, and in need of a friend.  My week was still tough.  My year still rough.  But I walked away with a reminder that no matter how many times I have failed, His mercies remain.  That the Lord of the Universe is who I am living for, and His will is perfect.  That He is in control.  And I am not.

The cry of my heart is to bring You praise.

From the inside out, Lord, my soul cries out.

He is faithful

By Kristen Entwistle

He’s the God of every story,
He sees each tear that falls.
We may not understand but one thing is certain.
He is faithful, He’s a faithful God.

His ways are holier
Than we could ever comprehend.
When our world is shaking,
He holds us in the palm of His hand.

Do you ever feel like your life is crumbling around you, like the walls are caving in, like you are the only one in the world feeling the earthquake that is destroying your life?  Like the storms will never end, the waves never cease, the wind never still?  Like the words you sing on Sunday are infinitely far away on Monday?  Like God is millions of miles away when you’re struggling?

But sometimes we forget who is in the boat with us.

In our boat is the calmer of the waves, ceaser of the wind, Messiah.   In our boat is the one, true, faithful God.  In our boat is the One who formed us in our mother’s womb.  The One who knows the number of hairs on our heads.  The One who has gone before us, died for us, and lives for us.

He’s in our boat, and when it feels like it’s sinking, know that He is faithful to lift you up.  Perhaps your boat will sink.  But you will not drown.  Perhaps the winds will continue to howl for now.  But you will not be blown away.  Perhaps the steady leak will cause you to have to bail some water out.  But your boat will still float.

Because we have the Lord of Creation in our boat.

My boat certainly feels like it is sinking right now.  And it’s easy to forget that the Lord of Heaven and earth is in my boat.  But I’d rather sail the rough sees with Him than the calm waters without Him.  I may not understand it until I get to the other side of this life.  But He’s not going to let me sink, even though I am certainly not deserving of saving.

He is in my boat.  And He is the God of every story – the good, the bad, the ugly, the hard, the easy, the difficult, the seemingly insurmountable.  He is faithful in every stage of life, in every storm, in the calm and in the raging sea.  He is faithful, and I will forever trust Him.  He is faithful.

You’re the God of every story,
You see each tear that falls.
We may not understand but one thing is certain.
You are faithful, You are faithful.

You’re the God of every story,
No matter what I’m going through.
I may not understand, You are God and I am just a man.
Yeah I’m forever trusting in Your plan.
One thing is certain
You are faithful, You’re faithful God.