I've been up since 3:30 this morning. Not because I wanted to be. And not because I didn't want to be, either. I was merely awake, and my body had received sufficient sleep. I got up and made my way through the book of Colossians, which is now my favourite book of the Bible. I can never keep track of my favourites, since every time I read one, I change my mind.
My mom always talks about how God wakes her in the middle of the night to sing praises to Him, or to get in the Word and do some soul-searching. I've often thought how encouraging that time must be for her. I haven't experienced it that much, but this morning's experience was no-less inspirational and blessed. I feel at peace with the day, and feel like I could conquer anything with God's help.
One of the things I was reminded of was the need for thankfulness. In Colossians, Paul encourages the church to continue in growing their faith, and reminds them of God's sovereignty and power over all creation. He also asks them to be mindful and thankful for the gift that Christ gave them in reconciliation with the Father. Jesus gave us the best gift when he laid down his life so that we might have forgiveness.
This is the centrality of the Gospel, but how often I forget to meditate on the beauty of this sacrifice, as my mind tends to focus on mere distractions of my life.
I've written about the band called 'Flyleaf' before, but I have been very encouraged by their music when I find myself not focusing on God throughout the day. Lyrics like, "death has been swallowed up by life, this dead will rise; dying to death and rising to life; with mournful joy she finally lets out a cry" fill me with such hopefulness of Christ's victory. I am thankful for musicians who are able to write such Biblical lyrics, and Flyleaf, in fact, uses unedited portions of Scripture, straight from the Word.
May the God of all peace encourage your heart today.