Why a blog from me, someone who has never been a writer, someone who has never been articulate or had a solid grasp of the grammar world. Because God told me to write. Several years ago a life storm invaded my family. God kept telling me to write it all down. I argued, but He would not let up. This went on every day for a couple of weeks until one day out of frustration, (I'd like to say it was out of obedience), I picked up a pen and paper and wrote for 7 hours straight! Do you think maybe I needed therapy and God knew it?

I've been writing ever since and have learned to love it! I started out sharing my stories with friends and family. I've now been published in a Nashville church paper, Our Daily Journey (a devotional site of RBC Ministries), PCCWeb Daily Devotional, Ruby for Women Ezine Magazine, and I am a contributor in the book Alabaster Jars, Life in Abundance Collection 2.

Why Ponderings? During this life storm, God led me to a pond in the woods behind my home. There He met me each time, teaching new lessons, reminding me of old ones, showing His presence and allowing me to feel His love through the surroundings of that pond. I found myself returning over and over to ponder, pray and praise. A healing of my heart took place and out of the experience came my first book, Ponderings From the Pond, then a second book, Ponderings From My Porch, and now a third book is in the works along with a memoir about my storm.

Why am I making myself so vulnerable? Because God has done so much that I cannot keep quiet. I have to share. Jesus's last words to his desciples were, "Go,tell." We are his disciples too and this is just one of my ways of telling.

I'm no scholar but I have heard God's voice in my spirit, experience His love daily, and have a desire for others to experience this also. I would love to share with all who visit and I would love to hear from you. If my sharing gets just one to ponder, to be quiet with the Father, to see and hear from Him or to be reminded of something from Him, then this is worth my vulnerability.

As you visit me, sometimes we will be at the pond, sometimes we will move to the front porch, and sometimes we will just be here, there, and yonder. Thank you for coming and please feel free to come back anytime, you are always welcome here.

May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, O Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer.

Psalm 19:14


My first book, Ya Know What I'm Say'n, has been released.



Friday, January 28, 2011

Beautiful Music

           Some of the most beautiful music, for me, are the sounds out in nature.  The sound of a babbling brook, crickets cricketing, cicadas chirping, roosters crowing, and when a whole field of birds starts singing all at once, it sounds like a choir. On this day the birds came alive and sang their songs.  I think they were praising.  That is not so far fetched.  Psalm 150:6 says, “Let everything that has breath, praise the Lord.”  Psalm 145:21 says, “…let every creature praise His holy name for ever and ever.”
           Why would birds praise the Father?  The answer might be found in Psalm 84:3: “Even the sparrow has found a home, and the swallow a nest for herself, where she may have her young-a place near your altar, O Lord Almighty, my King and my God.”

            Why would I praise my Heavenly Father?  Because He is so worthy of it and I
am filled with gratitude for what He has done for me.  The more I learn about our mighty, awesome, all-knowing, all powerful God, about His holiness, that He knows everything about me and still wants a relationship with little ol’ me…that is worth praising.  (Psalm 139 1-4…”O Lord, you have searched me and you know me.  You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my going out and my lying down’ you are familiar with all my ways.  Before a word is on my tongue you know it completely, O Lord.)   There is no other like Him; His greatness shows in His creation; He is always there for me and He doesn’t leave me where I am but keeps moving me on.  The greatest love ever shown me was by Him when He allowed His son to be mocked, tortured and killed on the cross so MY sins could be covered.  And He did this for you too.  That is worthy enough right there of praise!

For the Christian, praise is glorifying the Lord, centering our attention upon Him with our heartfelt expression of love, adoration, and thanksgiving.  It is taking our focus off of ourselves and placing it totally onto Him.  There is always something to be grateful for and He is always worthy of our praise no matter what our circumstances are.

You may say, “Yeah, but you don’t know what I’m going through.”  No, but He does and He promises to never leave us, never forsake us, to walk through the fire and waters with us, to hold us by His righteous right hand and to give us a renewed strength if we would just look to Him, to focus on Him instead of our circumstances.
I know this.  I walked through the valley of depression, my heart aching like never before because my precious first born had left and I did not know where he was. But God led me to this pond, began a work in me, and I began to focus on Him more than the circumstances. I raised my hand for Him to take and He walked through that valley with me and then led me right out. But not right away, only after a time of being with Him (a couple of years at the pond), talking to Him, listening to Him, and observing what He was showing me.  I also had to trust in what I couldn’t see, but to fully trust in Him, the one who sees all and reconciles in His timing.  I learned to trust in His plans, even if I didn’t understand.  Through this, God took my broken heart and brought it back to life with a new song in it. I entered into that valley depressed, He brought me out singing.  I entered that valley weak, He brought me out strong.  I entered that valley physically sick, He brought me out well.  Praise you Father!

I have learned that even when going through a difficult time and I did not feel like it, if I would raise my hands and voice to the Lord and pour forth from a grateful heart, my spirits were lifted. Why?  Satan loves it when we are down, because then we are weak.  But praise is also a weapon for us to use to send the enemy running, and he will. It also releases God’s power. For examples, read 2 Chronicles, chapter 20 and about Paul and Silas in prison in Acts, chapter 15:16-40.

            If you are unable to raise your voice, put on a praise tape and let it run all day.  I’ve done this myself and it only takes a few songs and I am right back where I need to be, praising Him with my own voice and heart.

            The singing and rejoicing can go in the other direction too.  I discovered that if we stay in fellowship with Him and obey His word, the Bible says He will rejoice over us with singing.  Zephaniah 3:17: “The Lord God is with you, He is mighty to save.  He will take great delight in you, He will quiet you with His love, He will rejoice over you with singing.”  Did you get that last part? How awesome to think that not only can He save us, take great delight in us, can quiet us with His love, but He will rejoice over us with singing!  My heart swells just at the thought that His love for me could bring him to singing.

            I feel a song of praise coming on.  Will you join me and the birds in doing what Psalm 100:1-2 says?  “Shout for joy to the Lord…worship the Lord with gladness; come before Him with joyful songs.”

We praise Thee, O God, our Redeemer, Creator,
In grateful devotion our tribute we bring.
We lay it before Thee, we kneel and adore Thee,
We bless Thy holy name, glad praises we sing.
Julia Cady Cory

“I will praise you, O Lord, with all my heart.”
Psalm 9:1

“Praise the Lord in song, for He has done excellent things;
Let this be known throughout the Earth.”
Isaiah 9:1

Please share your thoughts about music and praising…or anything else on your mind you would like to share.  Do you have a favorite praise song, an old hymn, or do you also enjoy going out somewhere and listening to nature?  Are you more comfortable praising in a group or in solitude? Does music draw you closer to Him?
(if you do not have a blogger account, just go to blogspot.com and type in your name and a password, then you can post comments, thank you)


Jenn said...

Beautiful post!!! I love the bird picture at the top did you take it?

I don't have a "favorite" praise song, but I love to sing and worship! In the afternoons after we are done with school I turn on the radio to a Christian Radio station and sing my heart out!

Thanks for visiting and commenting on my blog! I hope you come back soon!

Kristin Bridgman said...

Thank you Jenn!
My husband took the picture...he is a photographer on the side and also has a website/blog. You can get to it by going into my profile here and you will see Beyond the Campfire.
I will come back to visit you, did you notice I put your button to the right here?
Thank you for coming to see me and for your comment.

Jennie Morgan said...

Ok, now I have time to answer the questions you asked....

I absolutely LOVE to worship and praise God. Speaking Scripture back to Him and singing praise and worship songs are my two favorite ways to do so. I thoroughly enjoy corporate worship when I can lift my voice in praise with many others whose hearts are knit with mine. But I am just as moved in spirit to worship on my own and can do so anywhere any time. I stood on the edge of the Grand Canyon and couldn't do anything BUT praise! Literally! My heart was just bursting at the seams and the songs just came out! I stood there, looking at that majestic creation,and sang How Great Thou Art along with several songs of praise and worship! It was just God and me but was, without a doubt, one of my most incredible times of worship. Also, when I'm in the mountains (which we all know is one of my FAVORITE places to be!) I feel so close to God. I know He is with me everywhere, but there's just something about being surrounded by the majestic beauty of the mountains, smelling the pine, and hearing the sounds of nature that just makes my heart swell with adoration and praise! Again, I can't help but praise and worship!!

My favorite praise song changes frequently as new ones are released and currently one of my favorites is "All of Creation" by Mercy Me. But my all time favorite praise song is Revelation Song by Phillips, Craig, and Dean. That song moves my heart and spirit every single time I hear it or sing it.

My favorite hymn is How Great Thou Art followed very closely by Great is Thy Faithfulness.

Just thinking about it right now overwhelms me with Who God is and with gratefulness for all He has done for me! I think I'll go sing right now! :)

Thanks for sharing your sweet thoughts, Kris, and for prompting us all to praise Him.

Love you,

Kristin Bridgman said...

Your favorite hymns How Great Though Art and Great is Thy Faithfulness make me cry every time. Tears of gratefulness for this Great God who loves me, and I can't help but think of all the times He has showed His faithfulness to me! Thanks for sharing, I can just see you on a mountain raising your arms in praise and belting it out :) How pleased I know He was!

Camille said...

Dear Kris ~

What a lovely post! I appreciate very much your testimony of God's goodness to you and HIS grace in your life in bringing you out of your depression by turning your focus on HIM and HIS Word. Precious!

I *love* the old hymns. I have many favourites, but the one that stands out is "How Firm a Foundation". We had to give our little boy over to the doctors at the children's hospital for open heart surgery and just days prior our little niece made matching bookmarks for my husband and me with a verse from that hymn on it. What a precious thing that was! The LORD truly susatined us through that time...what a blessing to belong to HIM!

It's lovely to *meet* you.

Many blessings,

Kristin Bridgman said...

Dear Camille,
Amen to that! I feel so sorry for the people who try to do life without Him...I would never want to.
Thank you for stopping by and commenting. Please come back. And lovely to meet you too!

Tracie Womack Brackett said...

How wonderful are your words. I love reading your pages as much as reading my husbands sermons. Thank you.

Kristin Bridgman said...

Thank you Tracie,
I read your husband's today. Isn't it grand to know where our real home is and someday we will be there together. I do hope to meet you before that time though! :)