Wednesday, January 9, 2013

A Clean Heart

Sometimes it's not the Scripture itself that I memorized as a child that comes back when I need it. Sometimes it the songs, the hymns, the choruses, the anthems, that whisper to me in the dark when I'm reaching out for something beyond myself.

I began this year with one word, SOAR. And I have already seen God working in ways I never imagined. 

On Sunday I was able to be in the "big people" sanctuary, and during worship I saw myself, stuck in the mud. And I felt a hand, grab onto me, lift me out, and I could see myself alone, cold, and stuck. 

"You don't see what I see," I heard whispered.

And in that moment to know that He saw the end when I only saw the breathed life into these dry bones.

This week has been full of a change of perspective, and I have had energy, and joy. I have felt a lot more like myself. 

And I have had so much fun with my girls.

But today. 

Today I found myself back in that mud. I was tired. And short with the kids. My husband has had school and long days and I've been alone a lot more than normal. And when I found that they had grabbed a pack of markers and brought them into their room, I saw the blue and green and orange on their bodies, their sheets, their blankets......

.........and I saw red.

I walked away, got them something to eat, and let them cuddle on the couch. I knew they were hungry and needing some chill time.

Hands still shaking, I could hear the old (was it Keith Green?) song...

Create in me a clean heart, O God, 
and renew a right spirit within me.

Create. Not try to scrub, and polish, and shine. Create.





And if the God of all creation can create in me a clean heart, then I can certainly form, conceive, and forge a new day.

So we start again. And again. And again. And we may never get it right, but I know He's creating a new heart in me, and that's what I want my girls to see.


  1. There's a quote (perhaps by Rich Mullins) about how people hear millions of sermons in their lives but it's one song they remember. Yup, that's what my memory says about the quote... not even enough to google it. This is the point where a smart person delete her comment and says, "I do the same thing! I know more song lyrics than I do scripture."

    1. Katie, So grateful for your encouragement and your friendship!!

  2. Creative streaks for all. I miss those days...sort of.

  3. Oh, thank you for this. I was drawn to your blog from Emily's site, partly because my blog is called "Beautiful Rubbish," and I SO identify with even the snippet I read about you on the sidebar. I, too, sound melancholy sometimes, but am working my way back to joy (in fact, it's my word for the year). I, too, used to try hard to keep it together and have in the past years discovered so much beauty in brokenness, hence, my blog. So, all that to say, I identify with your heart and I love your unique voice here. It's all beautiful.

    1. Hello, sweet Amber. I just finally was able to find some time to comment on your blog. So grateful for your words of encouragement. I can't wait to read more of your words and hear more of your beautifully broken story.

  4. Brenna,
    I love what you have done with this space. It is beautiful.
    And this, your words circling "CREATE"? Wonderful.
    "You don't see what I see" is haunting me. When we are in that mud pit, it seems that all we can see is the muck, yes? But, oh how dimly we see and oh, how God has great ideas for us. And His mercies are new every morning and they are what help us create anew. Glory.

    1. Thank you, Holly, so much. So grateful for those mercies. It feels like I sometimes have to re-read these words on a daily basis to remember that my perspective isn't the best or correct perspective. Thank you for your friendship!

  5. Starting again, over and over. Yes, that's what I have to do, too. So thankful that each day the Lord breathes His spirit into our dry bones, giving us enough grace to get through the moments before us.

    I would have had a very hard time with the markers situation, too. It's good that you bounced back from it.

    And yes, the songs are so important to me, too. So often the Lord has used music to pull me out of the mud.

  6. I think Keith Green did sing that song, but I am not sure if he wrote it. We used to sing it in a lot of prayer meetings. God speaks to me in songs too... and sometimes even in secular songs... His whisper to you, and your thoughts on that, lift me up today too. Love the photo of your girls too. These days go fast, and even in those frustrating moments, I can tell you treasure them. Blessings to you and your hearing His heart sing over you. Thank you again for stopping by my place!

    1. Pam, so glad I was able to stop by your place and glad you came by here. Community is so important and it does something to our words when we can share them and discuss them with fellow travellers!

  7. I take great comfort that God's mercies are new every morning, because i certainly need them. He graciously gives us a fresh start & a clean heart whenever we ask. Isn't He wonderful?! and Brenna, your posts are wonderful, they are filled with truth, heart & lovely pearls of wisdom. Thank you so much for writing & sharing with us!!

  8. oh, dear friend, yes. get back up again.
    i love how you ended this. getting up again and again.
    this is what your girls will see.
    this is what your God sees, too.
    beautiful words and love your heart.

  9. NEW. Yes please. So thankful for the new days! Nice write Brenna!

  10. Yes the beautiful repetition of redemption and those new mercies, daily...daily. This is full of hope and renewal of mind body and spirit....and just oozes grace. If I could go back and change something it would be to give more grace. Love what you have created here with this prompt. Its full of encouragement. See you next week? if not before? Friend? Grace on your weekend as we all begin again and again in this renewal, constant of our lives. Love to you, elizabeth

  11. oh friend. i LOVE how you walked away and got them something to eat. what a mama-heart you have. what a beautiful creation you are.