Tag Archives: David Crowder

Confident in God

Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.
Hebrews 4:16, NIV*

We’re encouraged to approach God’s very throne. With confidence.

In what circumstances? When we’re at the peak of our success and have it all together?

No. Believers in Christ are to come to the All-Powerful Ruler of all creation when we most need grace and mercy.

Asking for help from others is hard for many of us, in part because we feel diminished if we have to admit weakness, lack or other needs. We can feel as if this puts the other person in a position of power over us, and we may fear their response – or their future demands of payback.

When we truly trust the other person it’s much easier. We may still fear they’ll be disappointed in us, hurt, or angry over what we reveal, especially when it’s the sort of issue that has us requiring grace and mercy.

I don’t know about you, but when I’m feeling in need of grace and mercy it’s because I’ve blown it. Or I’m feeling inadequate or in some other way unworthy. I’m the very opposite of confident.

Yet we’re to come to God with confidence, at our lowest point. Not with a brash, in-your-face boldness that thinks He’s somehow obligated to us.

A confidence based on God’s character and on His promises. They do obligate Him to receive us, but only because He committed to do so because of His goodness and Jesus’ finished work on the Cross. It has nothing to do with our merit.

Because we know Who He is, we know we’ll find the mercy and grace we need. Thinking in these terms, the confidence we express is faith. We’re choosing to believe Him and to stake our needs on Him.

This reminds me of James 1:5-6, which encourages us to ask God for wisdom and warns that, when we ask, we need to believe He will answer. The attached warning is that unbelief will hinder our prayer. (The good news is, we can always pray “Lord, help my unbelief.” Mark 9:24)

God our King, awesome in majesty and holiness, we are perpetually in need of Your grace and mercy. Thank You for making a way for us to receive what we could never earn or supply on our own. Even faith is a gift from You, so please give us the faith – the confidence in You – that will bring us into Your presence to receive what You long to give. Thank You for loving us enough for this.

I loved this song from the first time I heard it: “Come as You Are,” by Crowder. At first it sounds like an invitation to those who haven’t yet surrendered to Jesus, but I think it applies to Christians, too, any time we’re at that place of needing grace and mercy.

*New International Version (NIV) Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.


Without Proof: the Playlist

Each of the Redemption’s Edge novels has an associated soundtrack in my head. For Secrets and Lies, it may have leaked into readers’ heads, too, because the novel is full of references to songs. For Heaven’s Prey and Without Proof, the music isn’t mentioned by name, but my imagination links certain songs with certain characters or situations.

Here’s my playlist for Without Proof: music that complements the characters and theme. Below the YouTube screen, I’ve listed each title and artist. Most connect with Amy’s identity struggles, but there’s also Michael’s song for Amy and what I think of as Michael’s and Gilles’ song from back in the day. Scroll down and have a look 🙂

Without Proof playlist:
Come as You Are” by Crowder
Always” by the Newsboys
Say You Need Love” by the Newsboys
What Are You Waiting For?” by Nickelback
Let it All Come Out” by the Newsboys
The Letter” by the Newsboys
I Belong” by Kathryn Scott
“My New Name” by Todd Agnew (not in the YouTube mix… I couldn’t find it there)
Child of God” by Kathryn Scott
Yours to Hold” by Skillet (Michael’s song for Amy)
A Friend Like You” by Geoff Moore and The Distance (Michael’s and Gilles’ song)

Proof that Jesus Loves Me

Good Friday is a difficult day. How do you balance the ultimate, willing sacrifice of Jesus Christ to save us all: His pain against our rich benefit?

One thing I know: Good Friday proves His love for me. For you. For us all.

Let this song from the David Crowder*Band bless you: Shadows. Take in the words: “When all seems lost, remember the cost. Rest in the shadow of the Cross.” [paraphrased]


Songs of Home

Before Canadian East Coast music hit the national/international scene, we locals had been enjoying it for years. I remember sitting in a small auditorium, feeling the power of the audience singing along to “We Are an Island.”

The song is Cape Breton Island’s unofficial anthem. Cape Breton is a large, beautiful island on the north-eastern tip of Nova Scotia, and many of its sons and daughters have “gone down the road” to find employment. Like the other Atlantic Canadians, they’ve taken their music with them.

Singing along, caught up in the longing for home even though I was home, I found myself wishing for my own musical links. Yes, Nova Scotia has its own unofficial anthems but lovely as they are, they don’t resonate that way with me. And I’m blessed to be still living in my native province.

Songs of home implies the love and longing for a place we can’t yet be. Like the East Coast music to a displaced Maritimer or Newfoundlander. Like the songs the Israelites sang in the Babylonian captivity.

Not that I ever wanted to be exiled or homesick! But when you listen to the songs, there’s a sense of unity, of belonging. A sense of something bigger than the individual.

Years later, I know I’ve found my songs of home, and they’re everything I thought they’d be.

I’ve stood in crowds of concertgoers, united in our longing for God, singing worship songs led by the Newsboys, Robin Mark, Steven Curtis Chapman, David Crowder. I’ve stood in smaller congregations on Sunday mornings, singing songs of home led by worship teams or solo musicians. And I’ve sung along to my mp3 player when only God was listening.

What are some of your songs of home?

Pain and Joy

Now a man named Lazarus was sick….When he heard this, Jesus said, “This sickness will not end in death. No, it is for God’s glory so that God’s Son may be glorified through it.”

Now Jesus loved Martha and her sister and Lazarus. So when he heard that Lazarus was sick, he stayed where he was two more days.
John 11:1a, 4-6 NIV*

Jesus didn’t even have to go see Lazarus to heal him, he could have just said the word. Instead He waited until Lazarus was dead before starting out.

He loved this family. Their home seems to be one of the few genuinely safe places where He could visit without loaded questions and malice.

Loving them, knowing their faith and character and that they could pass this test, He let Lazarus the provider die.

Because there was something bigger at stake.

This was “for God’s glory so that God’s Son may be glorified through it.” (v. 4)

And as much as this was clearly about God, it wasn’t for God’s benefit. He wasn’t on an ego trip.

It was for the people, the believers. Jesus told His disciples in verse 15, “…for your sake I am glad I was not there, so that you may believe.

Not for God’s sake that they could believe, but for theirs. God already knew who He is.

Jesus wept and was deeply moved by the sisters’ grief. Probably more so because He knew He could have prevented it. Given that He’d already been speaking about laying down His own life, it wasn’t a case of letting someone else pay a price He wasn’t prepared to double.

The people needed to know Him better, and joy was on its way. But that didn’t negate the pain.

Sustaining and compassionate God, help us remember in our tears that You feel our pain. Help us rely on You in faith, trusting although we don’t understand. Reveal Yourself to us, not for Your benefit but for ours, so that we can trust You more.

There are plenty of good songs about trusting God in the pain. Today I chose David Crowder*Band’s “Shadows”.

*New International Version (NIV) Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.


For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 8:38-39, NIV*

God will never leave us, nor forsake us. He promised. Songs like Matt Redman’s “You Never Let Go” and David Crowder’s “Never Let Go” help us internalize and respond to this amazing truth.

But sometimes, don’t you catch yourself wondering? Circumstances and the enemy of our souls whisper otherwise, and sometimes we listen: not me… not this time… not after what I did…

Our heads know the truth, but our hearts are prone to believe the lie.

Last week for the first time I really heard the lyrics to “Shadows,” from the David Crowder*Band’s Church Music CD, and something clicked in my spirit.

The price was too high for God to ever let us go. Jesus went to the Cross for us and defeated death. He’s not going to give up on us after that, no matter how troublesome we are.

Father, You knew what you were getting in the transaction, how stubborn and slow of heart we are, and You still loved us enough to pay a horrific price to rescue us. You’ve promised never to let go of us, and yet at times we doubt that. Forgive us, and help us to trust You and to stand amazed and secure “in the shadow of the Cross”.

Here  is a very cool video of “Shadows” from David Crowder*Band.  Take time to listen to the lyrics.

*New International Version (NIV) Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

What He Says

For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your forefathers, but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect.
1 Peter 1:18-19, NIV*

Today is one of those days with more to do than hours to do it, and it’s been weighing on me since yesterday. But I think the same practice should apply here as if I were going into any other type of stressful or scary situation:

  • Trust in the Lord with all my heart, don’t lean on my own understanding. (Proverbs 3:5-6)
  • Pray for wisdom to discern what God sees as important for the day, rather than assuming my entire list is the day’s agenda.

He says He’ll never leave me. Matthew 28:20

He says nothing can separate me from His love in Christ Jesus. Romans 8:38-39

He says all I need to do is ask for wisdom, because He wants to give it. James 1:5

He says trust Him and don’t rely on my own understanding. Proverbs 3:5-6

He says my times are in His hands. Psalm 32:14-15

I choose to believe Him and to watch for and follow His lead.

Father God, thank you for redeeming me from the empty way of life handed down for generations. Thank You that circumstances and hurry-panic don’t own me anymore. Jesus, my Shepherd and the Overseer of my soul, has rescued me. Thank You that I’m in His care now, under His leading and authority. I choose to walk in that today, Christ being my helper.

The song God gave me is David Crowder’s “Every Move I Make.” How good of Him to choose a peppy one to energize me!

*New International Version (NIV) Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

God’s Presence with Us

The LORD himself goes before you and will be with you;
he will never leave you nor forsake you.
Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.
Deuteronomy 31:8, NIV*

I’m rarely beset by nightmares, but the other night I had a scare right at bedtime. I was already overtired and a bit stressed, and now I was afraid of what I might see in my sleep.

Then I remembered one of the questions raised in The Shack: When we think of the future—of possible dangers and things that could go wrong—why do we see ourselves facing it alone?

I’d never thought of it before reading the novel, but it’s true. At least for me.

It’s also kind of silly. God is with us in the present. He sees what’s coming, and will be with us each step of the way. Nothing will catch Him by surprise.

With that reassurance, I decided to lie in bed and pray quietly, committing my sleep to Him. “You’ll be with me. You are good.” I repeated it as I relaxed into sleep. Next morning I woke thankful—and nightmare-free.

Today, tomorrow, He’ll be with us. And He is good.

Father, help me fully trust in your promise to never leave nor forsake me. You know the end from the beginning. You are good, and You are all I need.

I chose this week’s song because it speaks of God being there after everything, and about how He repairs, forgives and makes us new. Here’s “The Glory of it All” from the David Crowder*Band.

*New International Version (NIV) Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Some of us don’t laugh enough

I know I don’t laugh enough, despite the good folks at Readers’ Digest saying “it’s the best medicine.”

If you need a chuckle today, one of these might help:

Award-winning Canadian humourist Phil Callaway has articles, cartoons, and lots of crazy stuff at his website. Take his stress test (follow the link or click below), and then look up the rest of his videos on YouTube.

David Crowder is a gifted American worship leader and one brilliantly funny man. If you can find a copy of his book, Praise Habit, read the copyright page. All of it, top to bottom. Then buy the book and read it all. Here’s his epic tale of the Evil Squirrel:

For the squirrel’s revenge, click here.

Faith to Receive

In Lystra there sat a man crippled in his feet, who was lame from birth and had never walked. He listened to Paul as he was speaking. Paul looked directly at him, saw that he had faith to be healed and called out, ‘Stand up on your feet!’ At that, the man jumped up and began to walk.
Acts 14:8-10, NIV*

Paul was spreading the good news of Jesus: Emmanuel, God with us. He saw this crippled man – really saw him, and saw he had faith to be healed.

This reminds me of Jesus teaching in his home town: “… he did not do many miracles there because of their lack of faith.” (Matthew 13:58, NIV) And of the way He had to first deal with the father’s faith issue before healing the tortured son:

“O unbelieving generation,” Jesus replied, “how long shall I stay with you? How long shall I put up with you? Bring the boy to me.”

So they brought him. When the spirit saw Jesus, it immediately threw the boy into a convulsion. He fell to the ground and rolled around, foaming at the mouth. Jesus asked the boy’s father, “How long has he been like this?”

“From childhood,” he answered. It has often thrown him into fire or water to kill him. But if you can do anything, take pity on us and help us.”

“‘If you can’?” said Jesus. “Everything is possible for him who believes.”

Immediately the boy’s father exclaimed, “I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!”

When Jesus saw that a crowd was running to the scene, he rebuked the evil spirit. “You deaf and mute spirit,” he said, “I command you, come out of him and never enter him again.”
Mark 9:19-25, NIV*

God is all-wise, and if He chooses not to heal someone, no amount of manufactured faith can make it happen. But if He offers healing, or deliverance, or salvation… it seems to me like we need faith to receive it.

The good news here is it’s God who gives us the faith: “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith – and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God – not by works, so that no one can boast.” (Ephesians 2:8-9, NIV)

The gift of God: but we still need to receive it.

For the people on my prayer list, this adds to my prayers. I’m praying for God to give them faith to receive the salvation, healing, and/or deliverance they need.

For me, I need to pray for faith to receive whatever God wants to give me. He’s still growing and shaping me, and I don’t want to miss anything because I couldn’t receive it.

I wanted to share a link to Robin Mark’s “With All Faith,” but couldn’t find it on YouTube. Instead, here is a song the LORD and I shared yesterday as part of my prayer for a young man who doesn’t know Jesus. I’m playing it now in anticipation of the day when he can sing it himself. This is the David Crowder Band’s rendition of “Heaven Came Down” from the Illuminate CD. I prefer the simpler version on their Lime CD, but this is still great – and check out the pictures with it.

*New International Version (NIV) Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.