February 20, 2014

tears, a cold, and fear

“To the degree you experience God’s love toward you – that He sees you as beautiful and radiant – you will be changed.” Tim Keller

Some days He hits me like the cooler of colored sugar-water they pour over the heads of winning coaches.

I am still flinging drops from my eyelashes, still drying off the face. The best moments leave me feeling a little abashed, as though I stood soaking wet in front of a crowd, and very much loved.

He whispered it between the lines. He always does this when I am sick--stuffs my nose, wears out my bones so I finally stop my incessant plodding and just listen.

Listen to how He works in the life of a woman I admire and respect, who pens bravely, gently, fiercely, honestly. This hit me today, breaking the walls I feebly construct.

I shy away from His love. As I read, I knew it. And the reasons are unbearably ridiculous. I am afraid to change. Or really, be changed. I refuse to experience His love, refuse to trust Him, because of fear. The lie, the great and powerful lie that hides behind curtains and smoke, and shouts that I am better off where I am. That I am safe. We are never safe, but in the Hands of the One who spoke stars into flame. It is a different kind of safe.

I am afraid, though. Afraid, honestly, that He won't be enough. That I will step out in faith and be left hanging, falling to my own demise of shame and failure. How patient He is to have pointed me toward it gently, clearly.

Some might sneer at this, or roll their eyes. There is no God, they say. And if there is? Well, we cannot know Him. And the Bible? Just a bunch of old stories.

Maybe so. Maybe they are just a bunch of old stories, but they are also just the Word of God, the Words that change people. The words that have inspired great things in the right hands and horrors in the wrong hands. Even these are under His sovereignty.

Some might say Christianity is wrong in so many ways. They don't know Christ. Christians, well, we are wrong a lot. We do dumb, selfish, stupid stuff. But even our mistakes have a place in all this.

This is one of those posts again, that takes directions and I cannot see where they lie. I am following Him in this, because I have no other way to go. If they only knew what it was to trust God. It is hard, so hard. But I have never seen healing like the healing God does. I have never seen giving like His. I have never seen love lived the way God lived it. For all the good in the world means nothing without love. It is no more than a blaring trumpet through which we exalt ourselves.

How can I trade the love of God for the false safety of fear? I can't. So I will continue to count and be small brave, readying for the bigger brave He might ask of me.

Do Your work in me, Father. 

February 14, 2014


Five Minute Friday Garden

Herbs, honey bees, sunflowers, purple coneflowers, black-eyed susans, hostas, sunlight, rain, soil, roots, seeds, leaves.

So many parts of gardens. So many pieces that make a garden grow. I miss the feel of the earth in my hands, under my fingernails, planting hope. I don't miss weeding.

But isn't that the most important part? Weeding out the bad, the in-the-way, the aggressive, the suffocating? So much to weed from my life--wasted time, fear, laziness, fear, selfishness, fear, did I mention fear?

I pray He can help me weed out all that stifles growth in the garden where my soul grows. Let courage, selflessness, love take root, and blossom for His glory. Let this winter work the hardness from me, let it soften my soil, let the snow water my roots, let His word take hold and feed.

I need His light.

February 7, 2014


Five Minute Friday: WRITE

Whew, funny this should come up. Writing has been my ocean these past two weeks, surrounding me, sometimes drowning me, sometimes carrying me far away and then back again. Taking a writing course can be an exhilarating, terrifying challenge. Especially for someone who has never known if she truly has some kind of talent.

I have a gift, and I want to use it for Him. This course is teaching me that to use it well takes steady work, wide eyes, and a little bit of brave. I love that thinking about writing makes my eyes snap open to the world, because sometimes I wear very dark sunglasses. So I plod along, working the words like clay, being worked like clay by the Word, and finding great joy in the penning.

Fear is ever present. But here, in the writing, I think I am gleaning more courage than anywhere before.

So write on, push the pen,
and be pushed
by a greater pen
in the hand of the
One who gave you
and life,
and greater love.