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DZ It is well

It Is Well

DZ It is wellHey lovely people..

I am writing a short note before I go to sleep tonight. I have wanted to do this since LAST Wednesday, the day I finished radiation, the day I breathed out the greatest sigh of relief. The day my new normal began. I have looked for words filled with enough meaning, but at the moment, those words still fail me. They are slowly coming. The greatest thing I have been able to do is to sing songs that describe my heart. Tonight at our HopeUC worship and prayer night I was given the opportunity to lead worship and sing songs that felt like my heart had written them.

For those interested, we sang.. ‘Alive in Us’ (Hillsong), ‘Build Your Kingdom’ (Rend Collective.. the BEST and FUN song!!), ‘In Jesus Name’ (Israel Houghton and myself) ‘Hands to the Heavens’ (Kari Jobe), ‘Your Name /Cry of the Broken’ (Paul Baloche and myself) ’It is Well’ (Bethel Music).. and heaven visited. It was magnificent. Then, we sang  ’Sovereign Over Us’ (Michael W Smith). There were a few others woven throughout but those were the main songs for the night.

I have always run to worship when I have no words. Between the historic writers and those who write current day hymns I will be forever grateful. My heart would surely have burst its banks if not for others helping me bring forth praise. My own songs are coming but the words are very personal and will take a little more time to find their flow.

Thank You to the worship team who have stood with me through this journey and helped me play with these songs with authority and a new sense of intentionality.
Thank You to our beautiful church family at HopeUC…. Again, my words will come, but at this stage, just know how much Mark and I admire you and how thankful we are for your courage and love. Thank You to Dave Kobler who preached tonight a powerful message on SONSHIP… being ‘adopted in’.. it truly was the theme of the day at HOPE.

Thank You to all our HopeUC Kids who had their own prayer and worship night, they brought such faith and passion. God is truly at work amongst us.

I am now off to bed and going with a FULL heart. It IS well…
Much much love,

Darls

CCM Songs

The 10 Most Influential Songs in Contemporary Christian Music

CCM SongsCCM Magazine is celebrating 35 years of publication and true to form, they have kicked off the 35th Anniversary Issue with a song. The Special Issue carries 164 pages of richness that truly tells a story of faith, hope and trust in God through incredible music.
 
We are delighted that ‘Shout To The Lord’ has been selected as one of the 10 Most Influential Songs in Contemporary Christian Music. Along with incredible songs like Awesome God (Rich Mullins), Jesus Freak (dc talk), Friends (Michael W Smith), I Can Only Imagine (MercyMe), El Shaddai (Amy Grant), Flood (Jars of Clay), Cinderella (Steven Curtis Chapman), Revelation Song (Jennie Lee Riddle), 10,000 Reasons (Matt Redman), these songs have clearly resonated and touched the hearts and souls of Christians across the globe. 
 
Shout To The Lord has been heralded as ‘The song that practically launched the entire praise & worship movement. It is sung by an estimated 25-30 million churchgoers every week and has been covered by at least 20 other artists and has been performed for the President of the United States and the Pope at the Vatican.” According to CCM Magazine, ‘Shout To The Lord has become the standard by which all other worship songs are judged.’
 
 

Another Update on the Journey…..

Hey everyone. Praying that this little message finds you doing really well.

I thought I would take a moment and write another short update for all who are asking. You are all so kind and your words and prayers mean so much. We are all doing well, the finish line is definitely in sight (about another 5 weeks) and the family and I are pretty focussed on getting there in good spirits and with a song still in our hearts.

Let me tell you, radiation is a whole different ball game than chemo. This new stage brings a whole new set of medical staff and new friends on the journey. Also, this stage requires daily treatment whereby I have radiation 5 days a week. Although full on and confronting on a daily basis, at least you feel a whole lot better than chemo – tiredness being the biggest challenge.

On the first day of radiation I was terrified. I found myself thinking crazy thoughts of being burned etc., these thoughts stemming from the doctors who have to tell you all the ‘worst case scenarios’ in an effort to prepare you. Whilst staring at the door of the treatment room, on the first day, I was seriously thinking about running out of waiting room. I was planning my escape and running seemed like such a sweet idea. Thankfully, that very day, I started my day by reading my Joseph Prince devotional for that day which read ‘Jesus has you covered.’ That He is my burnt offering and that He covers me from head to toe with His righteousness. I cannot even begin to tell you how much this meant to me and gave me the confidence I needed to walk through the treatment doors on that first day and to keep turning up.

Through this journey I am discovering again and again, that no matter how dark your darkest day may be, God holds you. Even at the bottom of the deepest pit, He is still there, calming you, reassuring you that He is still in control. I lean into this truth everyday and in and through this, the miracles I am finding are amazing me. They are there if we choose to see them.

Additionally, my heart to worship Him grows with every passing hour. The songs and prayers are coming (slowly) with great clarity. I have found that when the business of the ‘ordinary’ is brought to a stand still what we are able to hear is amazing.

That’s it for now. I’m honoured to be speaking in church this Sunday morning and for the next few weeks,  my message is entitled ‘It is well with my soul’. I pray that by the grace of God it will bring life to many.

Love you all and so thankful for your love and prayers…

Darls xx

A Little Update

Hello lovely prayer warriors and dearest friends. I pray you are all doing well!!

I hope you can feel my excitement in this email as I have officially finished my last chemo!! Hallelujah is about the only word that fits at the moment. I am SO thankful that it is coming to an end. Radiation starts this coming week for 6 weeks. I shall be glowing from the inside out. And then thats it. Never again……

Thankyou for your continued prayers. On the days where I have felt I cannot do it anymore, I literally have felt the strength of people praying for me. The power of the Holy Spirit to comfort and strengthen has been beyond what I have ever experienced before. Again, I am so thankful for every one of you.

I have had ALOT of time to think, and to think deeply. So much to reflect on and pray about. Yes, this season has changed me….. for the better I pray. I cry easily, not necessarily sad tears, but tears all the same. Even when I’m laughing I end up crying. I think the tears have taken the place of words for the time being. This too shall pass. One day the words to define this season will come. And I pray they bring HOPE to all who hear.

Even though I unashamedly begged for God to heal me BEFORE treatment, He said to me that as I walked THROUGH He would never leave me. This is the truth for all of us today, no matter what you may be facing, even if God feels far away, our loving Father will never leave us or forsake us. I take GREAT pleasure in knowing this beyond a shadow of a doubt. He is with me. He is with you.

So with this little thought I sign off. One thing I am super excited about is that this Sunday PM at our church, I am going to lead worship for the first time since this journey started. Even if its a bit rough and ready, Ieading people to the courts of our God is my greatest honour. I simply cannot wait! His presence truly IS heaven. We will pray on Sunday night for all those needing healing, and for all of you who’ve asked us to pray for loved ones. Yes we shall. Healing, in Jesus name.

OK.. much much love..

Darls.