An Oasis in the Desert

The wilderness and the dry land shall be glad;
    the desert shall rejoice and blossom like the crocus;
 it shall blossom abundantly
    and rejoice with joy and singing.
The glory of Lebanon shall be given to it,
    the majesty of Carmel and Sharon.
They shall see the glory of the Lord,
    the majesty of our God.

 Strengthen the weak hands,
    and make firm the feeble knees.
Say to those who have an anxious heart,
    “Be strong; fear not!
Behold, your God
    will come with vengeance,
with the recompense of God.
    He will come and save you.”

Then the eyes of the blind shall be opened,
    and the ears of the deaf unstopped;
 then shall the lame man leap like a deer,
    and the tongue of the mute sing for joy.
For waters break forth in the wilderness,
    and streams in the desert;
 the burning sand shall become a pool,
    and the thirsty ground springs of water;

–Isaiah 35:1-7 emphasis added

Tonight was perfect. The reason? I had the chance to attend an Andrew Peterson concert. AP is my favorite singer/songwriter, and he is also the proprietor of the Rabbit Room, an online community of like-minded people who love art, storytelling, music, and the Lord. The concert was like an oasis in the desert; it was just what I needed when I felt like I was dying of thirst.

Needless to say, my blog has been a pretty dry place lately. I haven’t been posting mostly because I’ve been so busy at work. Here at the end of the year I know I won’t be getting less busy, so I’m sneaking some writing time in tonight.

It’s not just the blog that’s been feeling like a desert. Work is getting more difficult every day. I am fighting battles with my students on just about every level–behavior, learning, everything. I have seen some improvement the last few days with our poetry unit, but with more visitors coming on Monday to observe, grades due in a week, and RtI graphs due on Friday I am feeling overwhelmed and cranky.

Well, I was feeling overwhelmed. Right now I just feel grateful and refreshed for the night of music I’ve enjoyed. I sat there in the sanctuary listening to the songs that have been the soundtrack of my journey for the last few years, and I realized that with every inhale I was drinking in the music like ice cold water. I felt physically calmer and less anxious by the end of the concert. AP played songs that deal with sanctification, the crucifixion, and the resurrection–all timely themes in my relationship with the Lord.

There’s not much to add to this blog post, except to say that I have been blessed by AP’s ministry tonight. I am ready to face the next two weeks before Spring Break.

**P.S., I also got to MEET AP and get his autograph (Cue massive “geek out” session).


Music Review: “After All These Years”

AP’s latest album! Available at

I love music, and I listen to a lot of it. That being said, there are two artists whose music I always return to. Chances are if I don’t know what to listen to, I’ll put in Steven Curtis Chapman or Andrew Peterson. Every time I listen to their songs I am reminded of the season of life I was in when that music first became meaningful to me. Listening back through their respective discographies is like a walk through memory lane, spiritually speaking!

That’s why I was so excited to hear that Andrew Peterson had a new album–a “best of” collection coming out. With so many awesome tracks to choose from, I’m sure he had a difficult time narrowing down the final list! There are some great favorites on here, a few new songs, and some re-recordings of old tunes that are very well done. I especially love the new version of “After the Last Tear Falls.” If you listen closely, you’ll hear traces of “Carry the Fire,” one of my favorites that didn’t make it onto this cd.

I’m certainly biased, since I own all of Peterson’s cds and listen to them constantly, but this is a great addition to any collection or a great way to begin discovering all this artist has to offer!