Thursday, August 30, 2012

Come Follow Me

This week, our prompt from Bonnie was.."God will make a way" Please pull up a chair and join us, because sometimes we all get a little lost and need a reminder that HE really will make a way...

 There is a saying, that within us there is a door waiting to be opened. A hidden place. Maybe a place that needs grace, love and healing. Or just a place where forgotten dreams have been stored.

Either one, there is still a door. And it is probably closed, maybe even locked and the key thrown away!

In the quite, there might be a knock. Is it you knocking to be let out, or is it someone else trying to get in? But there is most definitely a knocking sound. Sometimes, it is easy to ignore and get busy with life...but then, life gets hard and we end up back at the door.

There is a picture of Jesus knocking at a door waiting to be let in. If you have never let HIM into your heart, it is very possible that this your door. And I would so urge you to do so.

However, if you have already let HIM in, then the door maybe somewhere HE has led you.

This is the case for me. I have been wondering around in a room that I had forgotten about and had no desire to visit again. But here I am. And I am not alone. There is healing and grace and love...there is still sadness, but so much more gratefulness than I realized.

This I dare share..this is the best description of this room:

 "Uh... I don't know. It was like... falling into a hole.
 It was like falling into a hole,and it keeps getting bigger and
 bigger, ..and you can't get out,and then, ...all of a sudden, it's
 inside...and you're the hole, and you're trapped, and it's all
 over. Something like that. And it's not really scary, except it
 is when you think back on it.'Cause you know what you were
 feeling strange and new..." ~ Conrad, Ordinary People
 I was a junior in high school. And sitting in the dark auditorium, the person on stage was describing me. I sat there and knew I could so easily end up where he did...attempted suicide. However, I didn't try, not would be seven years later.

Nothing messy, or see I am a wimp and a scaredy cat!!

It was after my divorce, in a bubble bath and I thought...if I could just slip under the bubbles....and I did. Then, I will never forget it, my soul cried out and God pulled me out of the water.

I have NEVER shared this with anyone,  until 3 days ago when I told my husband. (and now you)

There are places, moments, that change your life forever. This is one of mine.

We like to travel as a family and I love taking pictures of paths we walk. Maybe it is because I know where I have been, and I like to have a reminder as to where HE has taken me.

Some of the paths are straight and lead into pure beauty and wonder.

Some are mysterious and not well lit.

Some are rocky and slippery.

But all of them, I have heard Jesus say...Come follow ME.

So, I am back in the auditorium, but this time I KNOW that I am not alone with my secret...and HE shows me love, grace and healing. HE holds out his hand and says...Come, this way, there is still so much to see. 

You will still have dark days, but I am here. I will be your light. I will be your hiding place. 

Come, follow Me.

And I do, even on my dark days...


Saturday, August 25, 2012

Battle Scars

I am joining in the Faith Jam that Bonnie hosts on is safe here, and she is an inspiration to try and write broken. This weeks prompt is a letter to God.

Dear God,

I am bruised and weary. I am angry and afraid. I want and need to scream, cry, wail...but I don't, I can't.

The emotions are too strong and raw.

The voice in my head tells me it is just a waste of time and energy.

So I push on, another day done...but not really lived.

I need YOU!!

I know that YOU are with me. YOU have proven it so many times before.

Something has died inside of me and I am left with incredible emptiness.

I know that for something to truly live, it has to die to self...but how long, LORD GOD, will this darkness last before life starts again?

I almost didn't write this letter, because it is not what people want to hear...I am good at portraying what people "want" and "expect"..this, this vulnerablity is hard to do..even on a computer. ~smile~

YOU are giving me strength as I write these words...LIFE is real and DEATH has been conquered!!

     "If you'll hold on to me for dear life, " says God,
     "I'll get you out of any trouble.
      I'll give you the best care if you'll only get to know ME and TRUST ME." ~ Psalms 91:14-15

Help me hold on, help me hold on...

Always and only YOURS


Thursday, August 16, 2012

What I know now...

I am participating in an exercise over here because it is her encouragement that has lead me back to writing. However, I will not be posting a picture of myself...that takes more bravery than I have right now!!

 Dear younger self...

This is not the first time I have written you, and more than likely won't be the last.

This letter is more confirmation than realization of who you are and who you are becoming.

There are a couple of themes in our life that I need to remind you of and clarify for you.

First and foremost, God loves gardening. That might sound trite, however...we don't love gardening, we don't even like gardening!! Love taking walks in gardens though. Love taking pictures of gardens. But. Do. NOT. like working in the yard. It is sweaty, dirty and causes us to itch!

But, in case you missed it, God LOVES, LOVES to garden and will use every aspect of gardening to teach you about HIS ways. Hence the struggle we have. HE loves it and we, not so much!

The planting, the weeding, the all plays out in your life. And it is not a one time deal...God tends to His garden, which is you by the way, everyday. Right now we are in the midst of some serious work, we have become root bound. I have found out that fixing this is very uncomfortable and costly.

A plant that is root bound needs to uprooted; the root ball, gently but firmly, TORN APART; replanted in new soil and goes into a state of shock for a time. Only the strong parts of the plant survive. Parts that looked healthy, but really aren't, do not survive the replanting. It takes time and patience and great care for the plant to regain its full strength. When it does, the blooms are bigger and more abundant than before.

So take courage, we are being looked after by the greatest gardener of them all...God, himself is holding our root ball gently and firmly in his hands. And in due time, we will know our full potential...that is, until the process starts over again. Which it will, it has too...that is how gardening works, that is how God works..He wants our full potential and will not leave us alone until we reach it in Christ Jesus.

Which leads me to the second theme...knowledge.

Reading has always played a huge part in our life. It is our escape. It is our safe place. Our tastes have changed over the years as we have grown. For a while now it has been about growing closer to God and all the ways that is possible.

However, since we have been in this season of root bound, even reading offers no escape...I think it is because we are to be silent and words get noisy sometimes.

There are bible verses that bring rest and restoration to our weariness, so hold them tight and let them soak in, deep into our veins. They will bring insight and hope, but not before they bring truth and humility.

Matthew 6:22-24, this will bring you face to face with lies you have believed for so long, you thought they were truth..there is freedom from the just takes time.

Matthew 22:37, this is our journey...knowledge from head to heart to soul. Most people will tell you about making head knowledge to heart knowledge. And we have great experience here. But no one really talks about the heart to soul part. Maybe they have and we just haven't made that connection. But there is where we are now...heart knowledge to soul knowledge. This is hard work.

So let me encourage you, enter into it fully...stop trying so hard to make it work out for the good or what you think it should look like...just let God do the work and be still and know who HE is.

Wait. Trust. Be.

You have a great life ahead of you, more than you can imagine...

Still waiting, still trusting and trying to just be.