From there I went to a concert at the church where I work, which was put on by the Director of Music, David Levi Bedenbaugh, who was introducing his new CD, "Winter Is When Things Grow".*(see below for more info) Just the title makes you think, doesn't it? Think about the times of your life that would appear to be "winter"...you know, times of being set aside for awhile due to unemployment, illness, family stresses, moving away from home, loss of loved one or friend, divorce, depression, feeling trapped at home or in a bad situation...anytime that you have felt alone or afraid in life. Winter, often seen as the time when things die, go dormant, hibernate. The time in our lives when we feel unproductive, lacking purpose, confused, frustrated, lost. And yet, my friend chose this title for his new album because he discovered that the "winter" of life is oftentimes the very time that God chooses to begin a new life within us...to plant His seeds of growth and purpose in our hearts as we strive to seek His face in our times of sorrow, darkness, and uncertainty.
The underlying themes of both ministries yesterday was to believe...believe God when He tells you, like Gideon, to just take 300 warriors against the 100,000 plus Midianites,
"Then the Lord said to Gideon, 'By the three hundred men who lapped I will save you, and deliver the Midianites into your hand. Let all the other people go, every man to his place.'" Judges 7:7
(Read the whole chapter to get the whole story...it is marvelous)...
And like Jesus said to the man who was possessed by a demon in Mark 9:23:
"If you can believe, all things are possible to him who believes..."
And also like Jesus said to Thomas, known to us as "doubting Thomas", in John 20:26-29...
"And after eight days (after Christ's resurrection) His disciples were again inside, and Thomas was with them. Jesus came, the doors being shut, and stood in the midst, and said, 'Peace to you.' Then He said to Thomas, 'Reach your finger here, and look at My hands; and reach your hand here, and put it into My side. Do not be unbelieving, but believing.'
"And Thomas answered and said to Him, 'My Lord and my God!' Jesus said to him, "Thomas, because you have seen Me, you have believed. Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.'"
I think of the old hymn, "Only Believe", written by Paul Rader in 1921: (verse three in particular:) (and also quoted in one of David Levi's songs, "Only Believe"....)