I will look back and see that You are faithful. I look ahead and know that You are able.
– “I Will Look Up” by Elevation Worship
I’m completely blown away by the number of incredible non-profits in Charlotte. These companies are making long-term investments to help those in need.
Here are just a few I’ve been able to connect with recently. See how they’re changing our community, our city, our nation, and world. Get inspired.
Samaritan’s Feet International: Through an act of love, humility, and hope, Samaritan’s Feet volunteers across the globe have washed the feet of, given a pair of shoes to, and shared a message of hope with millions of impoverished children and adults who don’t own a pair of shoes.
Fashion and Compassion: I can’t say enough good things about this organization. Their vision is to “connects caring consumers with vulnerable women artisans to bring dignity through economic opportunity.” They do this through providing employment opportunities to vulnerable women around the world, educating customers about injustice, and raising funds through product sales. I love this organization because they’re wisely investing in communities long-term. Go buy a beautiful necklace or clutch and support a great cause!
Compassion to Act: CTA is a faith-based ministry that serves victims of labor and sex trafficking in the Charlotte area. The raise awareness in the community about modern day slavery, liberate victims through connecting them to the resources available within the Charlotte area, provide long-term shelter and a comprehensive care plan, and help them find restoration through mentoring, spiritual training, job training, and life skills training.
I’ve probably listened to this album 25 times the past week. And that’s not an exaggeration. A friend of a friend manages this duo. The voices of this husband and wife team match and compliment each other perfectly.
It’s going to be impossible for you to listen to this without nodding your head, singing along, tapping your toes, etc. Go ahead and try:
Take a listen to their other songs here. Or just go ahead and buy the album. Just do it now.
It hit 90 degrees here today which means it’s summer. It’s time for some new tunes while you lay out and soak up the sun. Here are two albums you need this summer. I highly recommend both:
Artist: Jesse Morrow
Album: Things I Might Lose
This guy is talented (and I’m not just saying that because he’s a friend from Washington). His new album, Things I Might Lose, is full of strong beats that will have you nodding your head in a heartbeat. The mix of blues with crazy good guitar and keys melodies is such a good, unique sound. My favorites from the album are ‘Locked’ (the opening is killer on this) and ‘Best Shot.’
Album: Montibello Road
This Charlotte band caught my ears a few years ago when they opened for John Mark McMillan. Their unique folksy sound is so much fun. Even though there are only 4 songs on their newest EP, each one is full of life and will make your ears quite happy. Favorites from the album are the ‘Obey Your Guns’ (I promise you’ll be hearing this on the radio soon) and the haunting ‘Giant.’
I believe strongly in supporting local music, so go hunt for the talent around you! It’s there, so start listening!
The current series at Elevation is called The Expectation Gap, and a week ago the sermon was on the passage where Jesus learns of Lazarus’ sickness and then later heals him. Pastor Furtick focused on John 11:5-6 for a bit, and I couldn’t stop thinking about the significance of these verses. Here are a few translations*:
5 Jesus loved Martha, her sister, and Lazarus. 6 Yet, when Jesus heard that Lazarus was sick, he stayed where he was for two more days. (GW)
5 Now Jesus loved Martha and her sister and Lazarus. 6 So, when he heard that Lazarus was ill, he stayed two days longer in the place where he was. (ESV)
Jesus loved Martha and her sister and Lazarus, but oddly, when he heard that Lazarus was sick, he stayed on where he was for two more days. (The Message)
Verse 5 lets us know that Jesus loves Martha, Mary, and Lazarus. He cares for them. But then there is a surprise in verse 6: Jesus doesn’t go to them. The “so” and “yet” in verse 6 displays cause and effect within the text: Because Jesus loves them, He stays where He is rather than going to them.
Of course, this doesn’t make sense to us. We would expect Jesus to go straight to them for comfort and healing because of His love for them. But that doesn’t happen right away. He delays his trip.
In verse 14-15, Jesus tells his disciples “Lazarus has died, and for your sake I am glad that I was not there, so that you may believe. But let us go to him.” (ESV)
It’s easy for us [me] to complain and get angry when prayers aren’t answered right away or in the way I want them to. But from these verses, we see that He will always answer out of His love in a way that will bring glory to God. It’s a nice reminder that God is on our side. Always.
*All translations from Biblia.com
Tune Tuesday is back!
Song: Flee or Fight
Album: The Storm & The Eye
Instead of discussing what I grasp as the meaning of the song, I’m just going to pull out some significant, lovely lyrics from the song that are full of meaning within themselves.
Memories are all I have
That’s what makes it so sad
I’m on the road less traveled by
I feel at home on the path unknown, on the path unknown
Navigate through your pain
Or else you’ll remain the same
Matrimony is from Charlotte and they are releasing a new CD next month which I’m really looking forward to.
Don’t let what you expected keep you from what God wants you to experience.
Trying to remember these words from Pastor Furtick’s sermon yesterday at Elevation. We focused on Luke 10:38-42.