I'm sure by now most of us have heard the song Oceans by Hillsong United. I know I've sung it countless times in worship events and at church. But, it wasn't until about a week ago that something finally clicked and the depth of what I was singing actually made sense in my head and in my heart.
You call me out upon the waters
First off, I think I've always missed that word "mystery." But, oh how true these words are, that He calls us out into the unknown. He calls us out into the mystery. And we find Him! He calls us out of the boat and into the waters. Oceans deep. In waters where everything gets tossed, turned, dragged down, and caught in rip currents. So far away from the shore and the boat that when we look back, we see just a dot. In that place our faith can stand firm. But, how?
And I will call upon Your name
We call upon Him. When we are out in the oceans, being tossed around, we can call upon His name, we can look to His face. The oceans may keep rising, but there He is. Remember, in the mystery of oceans deep. Our soul finds rest in His embrace. We belong to Him and He to us. The oceans keep rising, but we keep calling out His name.
Your grace abounds in deepest waters
In the deepest of waters, the deepest of troubles, the deepest of worries, the deepest of guilt, the deepest of loneliness.
His grace abounds.
His hand is still sovereign.
He is still guiding us.
In the places of our deepest failures and our deepest fears. In the place where we feel like we are in a pit, so far below the earth's surface that no one can hear our cries or screams.
He is there.
He's never failed and He will never fail.
So I will call upon Your name
So, here comes the challenge...
Spirit lead me where my trust is without borders
We ask the Holy Spirit to take us out into the middle of the ocean. To the middle of the waters where it's chaos. Where we can't see the horizon before us or the shore behind us. We are asking to be called deeper into whatever "ocean" is surrounding us. So deep, there is no way we can stand. No way we can even tread water. For when we are in the deepest part of our ocean, the only thing left to do is to look up and call upon His name. And declare...
Oh, Jesus, You're my God!
Yes, Lord. You are my God.
I will call upon Your name
I don't know what your "ocean" is. I know what mine is. I have a couple of them, actually. And there is nothing more scarier or more exciting than asking the Holy Spirit to take me out into the middle of those waters. Scary, because I will be surrounded by things that I don't want to face. People, situations, unknowns, mysteries. I'll be in the middle of a chaos that I won't know what to do with. Exciting, because I will be forced to look up and call upon His name. And I will see Him. And He will see me. And His sovereign hand will guide me through the chaos. He controls the wind and the waves. Who better to lead me?
Will you allow the Holy Spirit to lead you out into waters unknown? Where the waters are so rough and you become surrounded with things you don't want to confront? Will you let Him lead you into the chaos and the mystery of the unknown where your feet may fail? When you're in the middle of the chaos will you lift your eyes and call upon His name? Will you let His sovereign hand guide you?
Remember, He's never failed and He won't start now.
Ask the Spirit to lead you.
Holy Spirit lead us...
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Ever since first learning about NEEDTOBREATHE back in college, they have been my favorite band in all the land. Their music is incredible, they put on fantastic shows, and they aren't afraid to be real. And ever since I fell in love with them back in my sophomore year of college, I have been (not so) patiently waiting for two things.
Honestly, my favorite part of any of their shows is their closing moment. When they come back out to take the stage, get as close to the crowd as they possibly can, and do an acoustic number. I remember them doing it back at the first show I saw and standing on top of chairs to get a better view. For me, it's literally the best moment of the night. Except when I realize that it also means the show is over and I have to wait again to see them.
An acoustic album from NTB is my dream. But, they just released their first live album, recorded at The Woods at Fontanel in Nashville. And now I have 100 minutes of live NEEDTOBREATHE to listen to. And it is magical. A mixture of old and new songs, with some dialogue thrown in about how the band hit a wall there for a little bit. They weren't sure what was going to happen or if anything was going to happen.
Well, I'm sure glad it did. I'm glad those rivers appeared in the wasteland and I'm glad this new live album is out. Tears of happiness I tell ya.
I can only imagine what my emotions are going to be when/if an acoustic album comes out.
Check out more from NEEDTOBREATHE here and on YouTube to hear more from the Live album.
Who is your favorite band?
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We all love bucket lists! We like to think of different things that we would love to do one day. If we had the chance to do anything, we would go and do it! It's fun to daydream about the things that you want to do one day and to look back and remember the things that you have done. Big or small, it's making memories and that's what it is all about. A reverse bucket list is a list of the things that you have already done. Here are some of mine. Enjoy!
Saw the Grand Canyon. I cried at first sight of it.
Went to a hot air balloon festival.
Celebrated Mardi Gras in New Orleans, Louisiana.
Went to a national park, Yosemite.
Learned how to kayak.
Walked across the Golden Gate Bridge.
Saw the Redwood and Sequoia trees in person.
Donated 10+ inches of my hair.
Visited the Pacific Ocean and put my feet in.
What things are on your reverse bucket list?
Link them up or list them below!
This past Friday I shared with you guys a picture of a park in Downtown Mobile that my roommate and I discovered earlier this year. Today I wanted to share more pictures with you guys from this lovely spot. Enjoy!
There are many reasons that I love this spot downtown. One, is that while you are in the park, you almost forget you are actually in the city. Besides the occasional train, I almost forget I'm downtown until I look behind me and see the tall buildings reaching into the sky. And, despite being next to a pretty well traveled road in and out of Mobile, the traffic sounds aren't that terrible.
Another reason this spot is one of my favorites is that it is located right on the Mobile River. I'm convinced that wherever I live, water will need to be close by. Whether it be a pond, lake, river, or ocean. I love being near the water. This park is a great place to watch boats come in and out, including the long, yet quiet, barges. Also, you can look across the river and see Austal. A shipbuilding operation that is currently working with The United States Navy in creating combat ships. My roommate can attest to the fact that I literally ran to the edge of the railing to marvel at those things. My sense of American pride went sky-high the moment I saw those ships so close. I'm also a dork and a fan of trains, which means I got really excited when one passed us by. Also, it was carrying military vehicles. More American pride. There is also a memorial in the park for men and women that have served in the Navy.
Plus, who doesn't love fun sculptures and artwork that you can climb and sit in? The Portal is named rightly so, seeing as this is the Port City and this port in and out of Mobile is one of the busiest.
So, with the water on one side and the city skyline on the other, I'll keep this park on my list of places to frequent in the city.
Do you have a favorite park or place you frequent wherever you live?
Leave a link or post down below, I would love to check it out and add to my list of places to visit one day!
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Every other Friday, I'm going to be sharing snapshots that I have taken in and around Mobile. Not only do I want to share with you guys this place, but it will help me to get out and explore. I love the idea of "snapshots", because sometimes they are quick and can be hurried, but always capture a memory. My photos may not always be perfect or frame-worthy, but I hope you enjoy them. I hope you enjoy seeing little glimpses of Mobile and I hope this encourages you to get out, explore your town, and take advantage of all your place may offer. This is #SnapshotsOfMobile. Enjoy!
Cooper-Riverside Park is a park in Downtown Mobile that my roommate and I discovered a couple months ago. It was renovated last year and is a three acre park along the Mobile River. The first time we went to the park I was absolutely giddy. It has the best of things that I love and quickly became a happy place. You look one way and see the city skyline. You look the other way and see the river. I'll be sharing more shots from the Park next week.
What is your favorite spot in your town?
What makes it your favorite spot?
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Not too long ago I was invited to join a writer/blogger group on facebook. I have loved getting to meet and connect with other bloggers through that group. Awhile ago, like back in the beginning of March, I got nominated for a Liebster Award by Nance at Leaning on Jesus. And you are now seeing procrastination at its finest with this post finally being written. I've been nominated for a Liebster Award a couple of times and always love doing Q&A type posts. Nance asked some really great questions, so let's get started!
Why did you start blogging? I started blogging back in 2009 after seeing my big sister's blog. I've always enjoyed writing and journaling, so I thought "why not?" Polished Arrow isn't my first blog, but it is the space that I've really grown to be my own and have loved watching the community start to build. I write mainly because I believe that words are powerful and want people to feel encouraged when they come into this space and when they leave it.
When did you understand love? The only thing I understand about love is that God is love. And without His love, I would be nothing.
What is your favorite book? Give an excerpt in one sentence. Oh, this is such a hard question for me! I'm a big lover of books. One that I recently read that became a favorite is The Book Thief. A young orphan finds family and friendship in the darkest of places while being followed around by Death.
When did you first start reading a blog? The first personal blog I read was probably my sister's. I've found and followed so many bloggers over the years, I don't remember often how I first discovered them.
What is your best blog? Share with us the link. I'm not sure what my best post is, but I have my favorites. This is my most recent favorite, The KitchenAid Mixer Dilemma. For a list of my other favorites, check out this page.
What's your favorite dish to cook for your guests? Baking and cooking is something that I've gotten more into the older I've become. I recently baked my first batch of biscuits from scratch! I love trying out new recipes. I think my favorite thing, though, would have to be apple pie. It's a new tradition I have to make it every year for the fourth of July.
What's the best gift you have ever received? This is a tie. Either my Kindle or the Cross, made from two nails, that is hanging on my wall in my room.
Potatoes or rice? Potatoes! In any and every form!
How many books can you read in a day if you have a day off? I'm not really sure, but I feel like I should take this challenge seeing as I'm off work for a week. I have some serious book reading to do to catch up on my list. In the past, I know I've read one book in a day, but if I was doing nothing but reading and was really drawn in, I think I could read a couple in a day.
What is something adventurous you would like to try on your birthday? Kayak and camp along the coast, Atlantic or Pacific.
Ice cream or cake? Another tough one. Ice cream cake. ;)
Thank you again, Nance for nominating me. So sorry for my procrastination in answering your questions.
Loved what you asked!
If you are interested in being nominated for a Liebster Award, let me know and I'll be happy to put together a more formal nomination post with links to your blog!
In the meantime, how would you answer the questions above?
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All photos on this website taken by me unless otherwise noted. Affiliate links on this page.