Friday, January 23, 2015

How Stepping Out Began.. Because Hiding Isn't Justified Anymore

Today was just an ordinary day.
4:45 roll out of bed.
4:50 run and turn the truck on - heater cranked up.
4:59 out the door
5:14 arrive at Crossfit
6:07 run 2 miles
6:35 rinse off, dress for work
7:01 quick stop for breakfast (friday treat)
7:13 arrive at my desk - throw my stuff down.
7:15 my favorite part of the day.

Head bowed.
Jesus? Do you hear me? I'm here, I've been waiting for this moment. I crave it every day. This quiet time before the rush. Can I just sit here with you and breathe... just take in your peace.

You refresh me. You do. You're glorious, my Savior. You, yes you are the one who is ALL Mighty. Who is beautiful. Who has legions of angels at his beckon call. You are the one who loves me more than your own life, more than pain, more than heart break. You do. You will never leave me, nor will you forsake me. My Precious King. Here I am... right here.

Right here before you saying I am unworthy of this meeting place. Of this moment. I am unworthy - a sinner I don't belong amidst your presence. Yet, you call it a lie. You have spoken saying that I am adopted, you are the atonement for my sin, masking it all. Erasing it all. Let me just breathe this moment in...

Forgive me for the monotony of my life. For the auto-draft hopes of redemption. You've called me to more than that... to more than just being a check in the mail. You've called me to proclaim... PROCLAIM your words - the good news - to the poor. You're beckoning me to GO and BIND up the brokenhearted wounds. You've commanded me to PROCLAIM freedom and RELEASE prisoners from their darkness. Yet, I sit here - auto-drafting redemption. Auto-drafting hope. My money is doing more than I am... so God, forgive me. Forgive me of hiding behind wealth and prosperity. Forgive me - and here I am now... open arms saying SEND ME! HERE I AM... Send Me. Choose me, because my heart has changed and I want to do more for you, I want to be all for you.

Send me.

Send me to battle alongside you. Whatever that looks like - whatever battle you have chosen to prepare me for, I know, in the sense of not knowing exactly how, that you are preparing me for the fight.  So send me... when you're ready. Not when I think I am, or when I think I am not... but when you, in your infinite knowledge and your glorious plan, are ready.


Then it hit me... I'm stepping out today ready, for the first time in a long time - I'm ready.

Stained-Glass Heart

God I don't know what I'm doing
and I don't know where to start.
Anxiety is battling deep inside my heart.
I'm broken and I'm torn, falling into pieces.
Expectations are demanding, out of reach - they keep teasing.

So here is my stained glass heart
put together by the maker of the stars.
This stained-glass heart
needs a light to shine bright through it,
but tonight the beauty is hidden in the dark.

I am drained in this confusion,
and I'm giving you my all.
Let your grace be cherished;
only your truth be sought.
A fragile child I am, keep me held in your hands.
God I don't want to miss your best,
by running back to the start.

So here is my stained glass heart
put together by the maker of the stars.
This stained-glass heart
needs a light to shine bright though it,
but tonight the beauty is hidden in the dark.

So here I am.
Take me.
God shine radiantly!
You've won this war against the world on my heart.
My soul longed or rest - just one deep breath,
and now you're claiming VICTORY!

On this stained-glass heart,
put together by the maker of the stars.
This stained-glass heart has your love-light shining through it;
radiantly the beauty overwhelms the dark.

Radiantly the beauty overwhelms the dark,
in my stained-glass heart.

Monday, January 19, 2015

A Friendly and Needy Request

It's been 19 days since I stopped everything. I stopped blogging, stopped posting, just plainly stopped. Quieting myself, seeking God first above recognition, above encouragement, above all. Above all, I wanted to see what His dream for my life was, yet here I sit here today still wondering.

I've cried in confusion.
I've prayed for confirmation.
I've wept in frustration and irritation.

Scripture has overwhelmed me, friends and mentors have had reassuring words. Even though I did not tell many people about this period in my life, who I told - I told in the midst of overwhelming confusion and a very humbling fall, what I love most is that God gave them words to feed my soul.

This quietness and shutting out has brought me to a point where I do not even think what I write or do is worthy to be read. It is me -- in my brokenness, in my tears, in my craving for something more.  Then God sends someone to whisper a sense of hope into my longing, he places a verse where I don't have to seek it out, and the spirit spills words out of my mouth when I pray.

I know... yes I know that is from God.

David sat there too, a dreamer like me. He's been through what I'm going through, now. He did the mundane tasks while his brothers fought battles. He sat staring at the same stars I gaze in to.  He cleaned up messes, and "kept his father's sheep. When a lion or a bear came and carried off a sheep from the flock, [he] went after it, struck it and rescued the sheep from its mouth. When it turned on [him], [he] seized it by its hair, struck it and killed it." (1 Samuel 17: 34-35); still he knew he was made for more. Yet, without knowing, God was preparing Him all this time to slay a giant and bring encouragement to his people.

Abram (Abraham) was given a vision in a thick and dreadful darkness (Genesis 15:12). Joseph was a dreamer and was sold as a slave, then imprisoned for being a slave with standards, until one day he ended up being used in God's big plan.

So here I am, breaking my silence by letting you know that I am a very broken dreamer. I am a dreamer waiting in the dark where there is no light at the end of my tunnel, but that is okay.

What I am learning is this:

  • Dreams don't turn out the way you think; they are not turning out the way I want them to, at all! 
  • In the dreadful darkness, in the valley, in the mundane God is changing me. He is molding me and strengthening me. The tears are washing away the weakness so that I may not faint or give way when He presents me to His dream. Patience is strengthening me in the heavy mist. Discipline is forming, and I am waiting, and finally sitting until He says "move". 
  • Once I come to a place where He can trust me with what lies ahead in His marvelous plan, I'll be waiting, because Slow and steady is His pace. He is not in a hurry... even if I am. 

So pray for me friends, as I pray for you. Pray for courage to face the darkness. For patience to beat out the frantic hurry. For love to abound and spring forward even when I would rather hide and hate. Pray for discipline so that He will trust me with His dream, even if I have no idea what it is - and that scares me. Pray for these things... please.

Much love.