My thoughtful husband sent me off by myself for a day and a half of those seven days.....this falls in the bliss category too. I packed a small clothes bag and then another large one for all the books, journal, paper and bible. Left with my last dollar, I'd rather be in rags with a good book then looking good with nothing to read. :o)
The whole family drove me off to the hotel on the beach, inspected my room which met approval and drove away. I just sat on the bed for the longest time.
My soul and body craved this. I didn't really get that until I was there.
I then set to unpacking my things. I am weird that way. I always need to settle my things in a new place before I can relax and think. The clothes bag took all of two seconds but I slowly stacked my books, papers and journal on the table, thinking about how the next 40 hours might go.
I got what a gift this was and so longed to use it wisely.
The thoughts started rattling through my mind. I had already gotten into my pajama's at 4pm and put on my favorite coffee in preparation for operation "productive planning". As I am shuffling papers getting things in order I am praying quietly about where to start and it comes..........
This inner quiet nudge. A quiet voice.
MORE of ME
I looked up and the sun was going down (yes, it sets around 4 ish where I live) over the water. It took my breathe away. My craving and desire for God was overwhelming at that moment. As I looked out the window there were power lines and poles and deck railings, all obstacles to seeing the beauty in it's fullness but yet, I was swept away by the awe of creation. The sun, the water and the one who made it all for me to enjoy.
My eyes were opened in that moment to many things in my life that were obstacles to SEEing him. So much of life had cluttered my vision, taken my eyes off of the prize and caused this aching lack. Instead of SEEing the beauty and awe of Him, I was fixed on the power lines, power pole and deck railings. I was seeking less obstacles and less trouble more then I was HIM.
I wanted less struggle, less work, less to overcome and battle through each day. This is where my time, thoughts and prayers were being spent. I needed to stop moving away from trouble and my daily attempt at trying to protect myself from it.
God is our refuge and strength,
a very present help in trouble.
It was as if God was saying move toward ME in the midst of trouble.
Wade through the mud setting your gaze on ME not the sludge.
Climb over those boulders leaning on MY shoulder.
Face the words and disappointments cradled in MY arms.
It's NOT less of that ....it's more and more and more of Him!
I had begun to believe that relief would come from removal of the difficulty or trouble. Reality is that with just the removal of trouble I would still be seeking help and satisfaction in my own self not in Christ. I need him even without obvious trouble. He knows that, but I on the other hand tend to think the lack of trouble is the answer not satisfaction in Him. This makes trouble a mercy not an enemy. It is a tool to get me where I need to be to SEE Him.
I felt I needed to soak my thoughts and trouble with more of Him. In doing that I will have a trouble repellent shield. It reminded me of flame resistant material. It gets hot but it doesn't burn. The trouble will still exist but it won't touch my heart the same and cause me to retreat, run, stress or loose hope. It will make me run home!
More and More of You Lord,
not less trouble.