"Come, let us return to the Lord. He has torn us into pieces, but He will heal us." Hosea 6:1
To be honest, I have been feeling a bit disconnected lately. Not from specific people, but from most everyone and everything. At times it feels like my prayers are just bouncing off the clouds, ricocheting right back down like a lightening bolt to my heart - despite the fact that my prayers are thunderous in sound and span many miles in width. Lately, I repeatedly hear God's quiet voice whisper something I don't quite understand ... and the clouds that were clearing in my heart suddenly gather and produce monsoon-like rain; leaving me with knees to the muddy earth and arms stretched out to catch the last shattered pieces.
I say go. He says stop. I say run. He says be still. I say hear me. He says listen. I say now. He says later. I beg please. He says pray. I implore. He is silent. I surrender. He swoops in. I am safe.
I find comfort in the fact that when I step out and do what I think is right, He is still there: "Nevertheless, I am continuously with thee" Psalm 73:23. I fail. Daily. I rush ahead of Him. Daily. I step out of His will. Daily. I am grateful that His mercies are new every morning because without that, I would surely have no hope.
These past few months have been a challenge. I fight a daily struggle between what I am doing and what I SHOULD be doing. What I am finding is that discord is more prevalent than peace in what used to be a big positive in my life. What I am finding is that I am less and less satisfied with the temporary trappings of this world, and desiring more and more of the things I cannot see. I feel as though the world is flying by me at the speed of light, but yet, I can't seem to grab the arm of anyone rushing by to ask them where I am or where I'm going. I can't look ahead or aside of me because it makes me dizzy. I can only look up.
In a season like I'm in - a season of uncertainty of direction, a season of possibilities, a season of mistrust, disgust and frustration, I can only look up. God has put me here - not as punishment - but as a gentle reminder that I can ONLY do ALL things through Him. Not on my own, but through Him. He directs my steps. My prayer has been to put me in a place where His light can shine through me - where the gifts He has blessed me with can illuminate even the darkest places. I'm waiting. It's coming. I'm ready. It's taking too long.
For my dear friends who are also in a season, I say "Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of all mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction so that we will be able to comfort those who are in any affliction with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God" II Corinthians 1:3-4. When we hide, deny, or ignore our hurt or pain,we are denying the possibility of God comforting us. He wants to directly comfort us in our affliction - He wants us to look UP. Not away. Not at our bank accounts or who has what. Up. He also wants us to receive this comfort, be blessed by it, and bless others with it. Bless them with words and simple conversation. Bless them with the love of Jesus. Bless them by your example of grace and trust.
Disconnected. The word is "disconnected" in feeling if that makes sense to you. Sometimes I just want to yell STOP or WAIT because I have no idea about what is around me. Sometimes I just want to go ahead and do what I want to do and not care about what He wants me to do. Sometimes I look to the side of me and then to the other side, and then down the road and over 'there' (wherever that is) and think that it is, for sure, better. The side, down, or over there may in fact BE better...but should we be worried about being better...or should we be worried about being on the path that God created for us before we were knit together in our mother's womb? Being on that path isn't always 'better'...but it is always right.
My prayer today is that for those of you who feel like I do, that you join me in praying that the veil over our lives be lifted. Jesus tore the veil FOR us, yet, we seem to always hide behind it. Jesus is the answer. Jesus shed his blood so we wouldn't HAVE to feel disconnected or shrouded in despair. While we don't choose to feel the way we do, we have to remember even in the thunderous rain that stings like thorns, it was Jesus who wore the crown of thorns so we could even have a life full of options and faith in what's to come. And as disconnected as I feel, I choose to believe that Jesus' hand is in all of it and I trust that He will direct my path. All I need to do step away from myself and step forward into His arms.
With my voice I cry out to the Lord; with my voice I plead for mercy to the Lord. I pour out my complaint before him; I tell my trouble before him. When my spirit faints within me, you know my way! Look to the right and see: there is none who takes notice of me; no refuge remains to me; no one cares for my soul. I cry to you, O Lord; I say, “You are my refuge, my portion in the land of the living.”