Sanctuary Battle Cry

Our Father

The congregation breathes in together

Who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name

Another inhale as I repeat the prayer I’ve known all my life

Looking around at the hearts filling the pews

Some here to feel the Spirit, others just paying their dues

Energetic young children and wise elderly folk

Eager fires believing in the prayer, craving to be stoked

My eyes fall on the ones who have their eyes closed

Whispering the prayer as if they were home alone

Full surrender, Sanctuary

Thy Kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven

I watch the living body breathe together

Chests rising and falling, like a throbbing heart

Faces I’ve known all my life, others brand new

But my heart loves them all knowing they’ve been chosen too

Hungry for salvation, starving for love

Give us this day our daily bread

Some file into the back row wanting to be unseen

Broken and tired and wanting to come home, come clean

Wondering how God could love someone like them

And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us

Scarred wrists, sunken red eyes, bones stretching skin

But surviving in His arms as the world erupts with sin

Lead us not into temptation

A woman sniffles to my right as I watch her husband comfort her

I’d seen her name on the prayer list, asking God for a cure

 But deliver us from evil

My family’s voices filling the room

Knowing that the King could come soon

Fighting for the truth and yearning for his voice

Coming together to sing and rejoice

For thine is the Kingdom

The Sanctuary looks more like a battlefield

Soldiers lined up with their weapons and shields

And the power

We are fighting together, for each other, for love

No soldier left behind, every sheep found

And the glory

The woman to my right raises up her hands to the cross

Believing even in her unbelief

Forever and Ever

One last breath

Inhale hope, exhale fear

Amen.

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Traffic in the Moonlight

God’s moon-white fingertip hung in the morning sky

Forever pointing just ahead and to the right

The tip of His nail pulls the ocean and illuminates light

As we breathe deep with tired eyes, still recovering from the night

Is He trying to point something out to me?

As the moon-finger points to my church, but then to a cemetery

I keep moving forward and so does the moon

I feel small but safe in my half-awake boon

Cars fly past me, coffee hot and strong

Break lights blind me as I enter the throng

Traffic on the road and traffic in my mind

Blocking me from seeing the end in sight

I pray to become the ocean so that the Moon-Man can pull me close

Take me to where I need to be, make me soft again like an old rose

Behind these clouds spreads blue and the only way out is through

And even when the final destination is unknown, anywhere with Jesus is my home

So, I will surrender and follow the Man who breathes and gives light

His finger forever pointing just ahead and to the right

 

The Rope


We have been made blind by the logs in our eyes

Pride and other gods swelled so wide

Too big to go through the gate that is narrow

And some don’t know he cares for us more than the sparrows

Breathing Salt and Light with hearts washed snow white

But some obey moth and rust

The love letter in the corner collecting dust

White pearls are thrown to pigs and girls forget their names

Ethereal trees that once handed out figs now cripple dry, the commandments becoming their bane

The beauty in the mirror more important than the beauty of the heart

But God adores the organ beneath your ribs like a piece of fine art

He studies it as if it were a painting hung on a wall

Even with the ugliness and imperfection He is enamoured with it all

Some strokes pure and bright, others crude and dark

Memories flooding in of that night when you turned your back and the earth left it’s mark

Tears welled in His eyes and He feels nothing but love for your heart

Wanting nothing but to hold the hidden and shameful parts

He’s been knocking on your door for the past two years

But the thrill of sin is music to your ears

All you want is love and all you need is hope

Beloved, God is the author of love and He is handing you the rope

Run

The sound of feet pounding the earth made chills run down my spine

Reminding me I wasn’t alone in this race to the finish line

I kept my eyes on the man in the white robe

The man that pulled me out of the dark to show me the way home

Mismatched breaths revealed the differing sense of urgency

I’ve heard of people far behind who are casually walking

Knowing the man was up ahead but only started running when fear started talking

Yet there were others in front of me who were practically flying they were running so fast

Keeping their eyes ahead and never looking back

I saw people running on different paths going the wrong way

It led to a place God could never stay

Some only joined the race on Sunday’s

Hoping it would make up for what they did on Saturday

I watched people fall and get right back up

Others fell and tried to drink water out of an empty cup

Thinking they could finish the race on their own

Believing they had the power to resurrect their bones

My heart was beating fast and I had blood-red cheeks

But I kept my eyes on the Leader even when I felt so weak

Through the valleys we would slow down

He would hold my hand and kiss my crown

He never left me alone and walked with me through the dark

And we would pick up the pace again when the light began to spark

Mountains made us stronger and we would rejoice when we reached the top

But the Light-Man reminded us to rejoice, but never stop

I watched Him heal people along the way and bring in new runners too

But some only lasted a short time, not willing to give up their life for the persuit

He spoke to us as we ran, cheering us on with his love

With a booming voice that made our feet quick to run

Out of the blue came a rushing river

I’d never crossed one this wild before

Jesus stood on the other side and my hope withered

The current was like a monster mocking me with his roar

But Yahweh looked at me with those eyes that know eternity

And I felt love swell up inside of me

One foot at a time, Keeping my eyes on the man that turned water into wine

Deeper into the strength of the rushing water

Feeling stones cut my skin- but I am the clay he is the Potter

Trusting the Creator will create a miracle and pull me through

As my foot fell deep and I lost the view

Choking in the dark, craving air, craving light

And then warmth surrounded me and arms held me tight

Gasping for air the Messiah carried me the rest of the way

He whispered “Thank you for trusting me, thank you for being brave”

Shaken but stronger from another war that had been won

Jesus smiled and said to me “Well done child, keep your eyes on me and just run”

Make me break

Dear Jesus, make me break

Let me feel the collapse in my heart

When I witness the acts that break yours

I want to obey you as I make this climb

Breaking the silence with my prayers and feeling my heart beat double time

Teach me to be beautiful

And give me wrinkles and scars full of memories

Help me to hold the hands on the clock instead of making them my enemy

Make my feet quick when I am hunted

Like a deer escaping a gun instead of being stunted

When my husband holds me I will breathe praise

Because you have answered my prayers for me to have him all of my days

You give me purpose and fill the holes that fall deep

Like pennies filling a well to the brim

You give me hope for my wishes and direction as the light grows dim

Amen

Intercession


I walked among the giants that once stood tall

Now they are growing white like bones, cracking from the fall

A valley of dry bones, a story waiting to be told

A requiem for the trees that had fallen from their throne

Roots bare, lining the quiet beach

Water timid and still, too overwhelmed to speak

I slowly stepped up on a strong branch to get a better view

And reached my hand up to the sky so blue

Their whole lives they reached up to heaven

So I became the new branch to make the intercession

I’ll reach to Him for you when you’re dry as a bone

I’ll whisper the words to bring you back home

I’ll pour the Living water over your roots

And sing the hymns when you forget the tune

We are the trees reaching up to home

So when one of us falls we won’t leave them alone

I’ll reach up for you because I know your heart wants to

I’ll keep one hand up; the other holding yours

Connecting our branches leading up to the Creator

In the valley of washed up beasts I can still see the image of our Maker

So I’ll stay right here with this tree-I won’t let the devil take her

The voice of God

In the breaking dawn of the morning, I heard the quiet voice of God

“How beautiful” I said

But you couldn’t hear a thing

I tried to explain what I heard

Echo the whisperings of the King

You looked back at me with sad jealous eyes

Because you couldn’t hear a thing

You used to hear it too until the devil caught you off guard

He knocked the wind out of you and threw you down hard

Made you deaf to God’s voice

The sound of Him now just a noise

I want to fix you, hold you and make you new again

But broken hearts cannot be cured by man

Almost a year has gone by and the healing is still so slow

You’ve grown more quiet and your head hangs low

But with every prayer the Great Physician tells me He is mending your heart

He says “This man belongs to me and I am holding him even in the dark,

Trust in me, trust in my time

I will deliver you from the deep because you are a child of mine”

You are chosen, designed and adored by God

And although you can’t see Him, I’ve watched Him stand by your side

He hasn’t left you for a moment, slowly leading you back to the light

Angels are singing you back home

A swan song for sin

Breaking through like the morning sun

Reminding you of the promises of God

You will escape the mouth of the beast and become stronger than before

So fix your eyes on the light coming through the crack in the door

And soon as dusk comes

God’s voice will fill the night and cause my heart to swoon

And finally you will smile, turn to me and say

“I can hear it too”