Foundational truths

Tonight I have returned to my first love in so many aspects. The heart tends to resign in ways known and unknown to or consciousness. In many ways I have found myself in this place. I have resigned from old dreams and desires in the Lord. Life has simply drowned out these truths as unattainable. Life has also somehow branded my soul through the years. It’s funny how the human heart numbs out when the road becomes a little too difficult.

blog

Life is one hard cookie to chew most days. Allow me to be bold enough to share my difficulty in hope that this will stir courage in the reader’s soul. The past  11 months I have returned home. From a life that previously was very comfortable and easy to digest. Returning home brought me back to reality, my reality, my home. The thing about living in comfort is that one tends to forget to live from the heart. It’s a beautiful numbing that happens in the place of ease. Coming home and being faced with a reality I had forgotten and disconnected from was not an easy process. I share this not for pity but rather for context.

There is a thirst that awakens, only from being found in a dry place. I have come to find that the desert produces more awakening than the the lush fields of life. We long for comfort, we long for ease, but the hard pressed places produces fresh revelation. It is the place of barrenness that brings fresh water.

See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland. Isaiah 43:19

Sometimes everything we ‘know about’ the Father is tested to produce that which we truly ‘experience about’ the Father. The bible speaks about Eternal life as ‘knowing the Father’. It is that foundational principle that will define, how we live and why we live. I have to certain extent walked away from truly knowing this. Often I place my value before the Father to the things I attain and the things I get from him. I have forgotten to rest in the simple truth that who I am and what I can get will never make me more his daughter than I already am. So here I find myself stripped of all comfort, all things I hold up as my trump card about myself. I am left with an utter sense of failure, empty of myself. The aching question lingering ‘Who do you say I am Deidre?’ Who is the Father to me? Who am I to him?

The accusations ooze out of my wounds like puss (gross I know, but you get it). One after the other, my lack of self worth bleeds from my heart. A belief system I have held near for far too long. I have resigned from the Father because I believe he has held out on me. When in fact no good thing he withholds from me. Now that things are delayed and I have nothing ‘good’ or ‘comforting’ to cling to, I see the wounds surface. I believe he has forgotten me, when in fact I have forgotten who I am to Him. Here I am again learning the foundational truths, that I am His and He is for me. I love this quote by Laura Hackett that says ‘rain is no measure of your faithfulness’…rain and abundance does not prove that He is good. HE IS GOOD. He is a good Father because his nature is only good.

Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows. James 1:17

So here I find myself having to cling onto these truths in a very dry place, until I see the rain. As I am busy doing this I am finding revelations about Him that can only be produced by this process of my life. As fleeting as this season will be, I am holding onto the Holy Spirit for a revelation that is deep and steadfast. I can partner in this time or I can turn away and not learn the things this season longs to bring to my soul.

For this reason I bow my knees before the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth is named, that according to the riches of his glory he may grant you to be strengthened with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith—that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may have strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God. Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think,according to the power at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever. Amen. – Ephesians 3:14-21

I get to partner in this season, by feasting on the goodness of the Lord (reading his word), agreeing with these truths (speaking his word into my emotions) and waiting on the impartation of these truths by His spirit (until my emotions change and align with his word). Until the day breaks I will cling to Him who my soul loves in the dark of the night. For surely as the sun rises in the morning her will shine on me.

Those who look to him are radiant; their faces are never covered with shame. – Psalm 34:5

Standard

Silent resignation.

Do not go gentle into that good night,
Old age should burn and rave at close of day;
Rage, rage against the dying of the light. – Dylan Thomas, 1914 – 1953

HAM087SSHZ

As the journey of life continues one is prone to silent relinquishment. A still agreement lingers: ‘the journey shows no promise in yielding a victorious end’. It is this very refrain that becomes the song in my heart of late. Almost 8 years into my walk with the Lord and it has been the hardest walk in my life. Deeply rewarding in many regards, yet painfully isolated from society’s natural discourse. A journey that has left me counting the cost of choosing the Lord, and has left me having deeper intimacy in Him. Yet, I am left in a season of dealing with my silent resignation. The quiet comparison on the inside that the late twenties bring; the desire to coast with the rest of the world. If anything I am learning that life in the Lord is a marathon and not a sprint. While the world runs the marathon in one direction you are running in the other. Being shoved and bruised by the heavy stream of accusation. Yet, we take brief moments to stop, drink from the stream of the Lord’s pleasures and continue running with endurance.

So here I am ±8 years into the race and I too am growing weary. The beauty of the Lord is that he is faithful to heal the wounds of my resignation and to gird my soul with truth. In this season I am seeing the Lord’s fierce leadership over my life in measures I cannot begin to explain. I am discovering anew that Jesus rages with jealous fire over me and will never relent until I am fully his.

He gives power to the weak,
And to those who have no might He increases strength.
Even the youths shall faint and be weary,
And the young men shall utterly fall,
But those who wait on the Lord
Shall renew their strength;
They shall mount up with wings like eagles,
They shall run and not be weary,
They shall walk and not faint. – Isaiah 40:29-31

…let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. – Hebrews 12:1-2

Being home has been interesting to say the least. It has brought a fresh reevaluation of my life. What the things are that I hold dear, how steady I truly am in the Lord. I find that I am revisiting old wounds (which I loathe) and having to find a renewal of healing. In the midst of the many tearful melt downs I am finding fellowship with the word again. There is a beautiful truth awakening on the inside, a reminder that the word of the Lord is living and active. A settling that anchors me in the fact that the Lord upholds me by the power of his word. I have been studying and meditating on the book of Hebrews and it has been bitter-sweet tears and dialogue behind the closed doors of my room. I am discovering in small measures that the word of the Lord is the platform for dialogue, it is when my pain meets his word that I am transformed on the inside. I am in a new season of prayer…a refreshing of interaction. My soul cannot hide from the Lord’s truth and my pain is the entrance ushering me closer to His truth.

For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart. – Hebrews 4:12

God, who at various times and in various ways spoke in time past to the fathers by the prophets, has in these last days spoken to us by His Son, whom He has appointed heir of all things, through whom also He made the worlds; who being the brightness of His glory and the express image of His person, and upholding all things by the word of His power... – Hebrews 1:1-2

I drew them with gentle cords, With bands of love, And I was to them as those who take the yoke from their neck. I stooped and fed them. – Hosea 11:4

If anything my being home is a fragrant time. I am rediscovering my resilience to love wholeheartedly even when every ounce of my being feels exhausted. More so, I feel the strength of the Lord’s zeal over me, in my weak reach for him. When I fail in my attempts to be fully sober, I get to commune boldly with the man who gave his all. I am the reward of his sacrifice and I get to marvel in this truth. The more I gaze at the character of Jesus I see a man raging against his desire to cave…gazing steady at his father and his desire for me. I see Him still upholding me even to the end of my life saying ‘that she would be mine Father’.

He had by Himself purged our sins, sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high, having become so much better than the angels, as He has by inheritance obtained a more excellent name than they. – Hebrew 1:3-4

But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels, for the suffering of death crowned with glory and honor, that He, by the grace of God, might taste death for everyone. – Hebrews 2:9

Therefore, in all things He had to be made like His brethren, that He might be a merciful and faithful High Priest in things pertaining to God, to make propitiation for the sins of the people. For in that He Himself has suffered, being tempted, He is able to aid those who are tempted. – Hebrews 2:17-18

Seeing then that we have a great High Priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession. For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need. – Hebrews 4:14-16

In this time of being stretched and moulded. I want to find that I have not given in to my desire to resign, but that I have given my last breath to the one worthy of my devotion. I want to rage against the dying of my inner light, I want to be found steady till the end, even as my legs shake. I want to be grateful for this time, and speak to Him about the things on my heart. More than anything I want to hear what he has to say. I want to be a friend, I want to know the sound of his voice. I want to be found present in the simple, weak yeses in my soul. I want to find flames burning once again.

And this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent. – John 17:3

 

Standard

Home.

We will call this place our home,

The dirt in which our roots may grow.

Though the storms will push and pull,

We will call this place our home. (extracted from North by Sleeping at Last)

 VN31FKA8MT

Today as I sit at my computer wondering what to write about, I am reminded of this question on the inside “Where is the home you build for me Deidre?”

Thus says the Lord:

“Heaven is My throne,

And earth is My footstool.

Where is the house that you will build Me?

And where is the place of My rest?

For all those things My hand has made,

And all those things exist,”

Says the Lord.

“But on this one will I look:

On him who is poor and of a contrite spirit,

And who trembles at My word. (Isaiah 66:1-2)

Living in someone else’s home is an interesting experience. I have never owned my own house so I am easily adaptable to other people’s lifestyles and habits. I am also easily swept up in the pace of their lives and often swept along in the frazzle of it all. Moving back home (to South Africa) has left me more than anything longing for a home of my own…to dwell, settle and be safe. The reason for this is that I have lived alone before and found a sense of my own peace in the vortex of my own rhythm. I yearn for a place to call my own. I suppose, I long for the safety and peace of my own space. As I find myself in this situation where I am finding my feet again, paying off bills etc.…shared space is where I am for now. My best friends are amazing and have been gracious to take me in, for them I am eternally grateful. However, for the past month for some reason this sense of ‘wanting my own home has been a lingering theme in my life.

Being home in my native land and still not feeling settled is an odd feeling. Having my life this close to my loved ones and still not feel a part of it…how bizarre this is to me. It is within this aching that I find a deeper understanding of the Lord’s desire for a dwelling place. I find that my soul longs for a place to find its inhabitance. Something about this stirring has led me to this revelation of how much the Lord yearns to dwell with us.

Home is defined as: noun \ˈhōm\

  • The place (such as a house or apartment) where a person lives
  • A family living together in one building, house, etc.
  • A place where something normally or naturally lives or is located

Home is where the owner of the house dwells. It is the place where we live. The one thing that resonates with me is the verb lives / living. It is an active inhabitance. A place belonging to someone, the house has an owner. The house gives the space for the owner to find his/her rhythm and peace.

Do you not know that you are a temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you? (1 Corinthians 3:16)

Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and that you are not your own? (1 Corinthians 6:19)

This truth is being carved into my soul. The Lord longs for a place to dwell and reside. He longs for a safe haven to share his heart and his desires for my life and for those around me. The nagging questions lingers…am I cultivating a resting place for the Lord to dwell? Am I a place for him to find rest for his burdens? Have I become so self-absorbed that I have forgotten that he feels, and desires to engage my heart? I have not once given thought (as I cried about my desire for a home), that he too longs for a home now…until her builds his eternal home in the age to come. Oh how my lifestyle has become this process of asking, asking, asking…yet negating that the Lord is waiting for me to ask him about his needs. He is the closest friend I will ever have. He lives in me and dwells through me in this earth, so easily I forget. The Lord’s heart beats at His rhythm and he longs for a home where he can find that rhythm and safety.

I will not give sleep to my eyes or slumber to my eyelids, until I find a place for the Lord, a dwelling place for the Mighty One of Jacob.” (Psalm 132: 4-5)

 

 

 

Standard

Growth from fallow ground

source: google.com

source: google.com

It will be out of the fallow ground that the planting of the Lord will grow. This truth is an ever-present manifestation in my life. I find myself in the depths of bareness all around. There seems to be a lingering awareness of my own bare state too. My heart seems fallible and easily shaken by the smallest of obstacles. The state of my life seems dry and empty. Heck even my nation seems dry and bewildered…like it’s waking from a drunk slumber and barely able to see clearly. More than anything inside my soul I deeply long to lie down, sleep and awake to a better existence. Yet in the midst of it all I am seeing the beautiful resilience of a heart set on saying ‘Yes, I love you Jesus’, emerge. There is a glorious fire arising in my bones as I choose the Lord midst the struggle of walking soberly in the moral compass Jesus has set out before me.

I once heard a phenomenal speaker talk about hitting ‘cruise control’, how we long to hit that cruise mode…because quite frankly it is easier to have satisfaction now. Many days in my life I want to choose other loves and other things to sustain me. Then, I find myself here in this place of emotional disconnect and I wonder how I got here. I see so many Christians doing just enough to find themselves on the right side of the salvation line, yet live disengaged from the beauty of the eternal work ethic and the reward of experiencing Jesus’s character. I have been pondering this scripture for a while in the back of my mind wondering the notion of why the Lord chose this phrase:

Eternal life is this, that they would know you. (John 17:3)

I cannot begin to understand these words. I have been thinking about this concept for a while. These words uttered by Jesus, was simple yet weighted. The ultimate mandate of life is to know the Father and to experience his truths in us. Jesus knew that the cross was the mandate of his life, because he wanted all of humanity to know him. He also knew that by doing this he shared in the Father’s heart towards humanity. As I reach 29 I am becoming more aware of the fact that I have 30-40 maximum years left to give of myself to the knowledge of Christ. That’s a little more than half of the life I have wasted already. I have 20 more of my prime years to give of myself to running hard. Deep in my soul there is also the knowing that I have not given as much as I could have, yet in his mercy he still draws me in. Here I find the whispers of this awakened within me, solely because He is committed to relationship with me.

To know the Father is to know the Son and to fellowship with him. I also know that a life of devotion to Christ is one of hard sacrifice and violence within to keep seeking after him. I often wish it was easier, but easy does not mold character. I want to do friendship with Jesus well, because I want to be able to choose him out of my own…I want to want him the way he wants me. I long to be able to say that I have given of myself that which was costly. More than anything, I desire to know that I have overcome the terrors of this life because I have found hope in Jesus. He is the eternal hope living and burning on the inside of me and I want to go out of this life knowing I have accessed that now and not cruise into oblivion. I want to plough this fallow ground of separation and plant seeds of comfort, joy and hope. I want to find that I am drinking from the rivers of delight that flow for me in the wilderness. Seeking comfort and love in the only source worthy of my time. As I celebrate 29 I am also celebrating his devotion to me as my Bridegroom King. I pray I would know him when I stand before him in the end. I long to hear his voice and recognize Him because I am giving Him this life now.

Matthew 25:10 –  But while they were on their way to buy the oil, the bridegroom arrived. The virgins who were ready went in with him to the wedding banquet. And the door was shut.

2 Chronicles 16:9 – For the eyes of the LORD move to and fro throughout the earth that He may strongly support those whose heart is completely His.

Standard

Tis the season to be broken

IMG_5011

“Most men lead lives of quiet desperation and go to the grave with the song still in them” – Henry David Thoreau

Let it be said that Christmas is my least favorite time of the year, not because I dislike the day but solely because I loathe that it has become this commercialized façade of selling out to traditions and disengaging with the truth. Advertising has tainted our realities so this day becomes a time that revolves around Christmas trees and gifts. I love lights, and gifts and the music that accompanies this season, don’t be fooled. I also deeply despise the accusation this season places on the hearts of humanity. Living in a community where poverty is so rife it breaks my heart to see the anguish of hearts wanting to buy into this day at the expense of their lively hoods. See, it is this western commercialization that teaches humanity that their worth is found in what they have.

Silently hearts are dying because they lack the tangible, wasting away in the secret of their souls because they have not enough to make this season be as sparkly as the rest of us. Fathers anguished by their inability to lavish their children with gifts, mothers feeling torn by the state of their homes and children roaming through life disassociated from reality because the pain of self worth is too much to bare. It is this stench that lingers into the New Year, and into the core of men. Truth evades us and accusations become the mark on our being. I dare you to walk the streets of the Cape Flats and see this reality upon the faces of children…no joy is to be found, only utter desperation.

Upon speaking to my 3-year-old nephew (whom I dearly love and adore), this reality dawned upon me. I asked the simple question: ‘Do you know why we celebrate Christmas?’ and he pretty much said with confidence, that it was about presents and lights. To which I responded and blew his little brain when I told him about a baby boy Jesus. My own family has become so wrapped up in this season that they had forgotten the truth. I come from a ‘Christian’ home…how is this possible? This is how; we as the church have become so quiet and tolerant in the aim to not offend. Yet, this tradition has been founded in the basis of Christ and as much as we want to change in the name of tolerance, this is truth. Even as the day fades and the years pass, this will still be truth. The thing that breaks me most is that this story will fade away from the lips of humanity, and eventually fade away from our hearts too.

As I was editing some images, I paused upon an image of a little boy that is probably burned into my memory at this point (It is the image used in this blog). I kept wondering why this image haunted me and why this image is so beautiful, yet so scarring. While pondering this thought it dawned upon me that Jesus was birthed into this kind of poverty, he probably looked like this dirty boy and every other dirty boy knocking on my door looking for a meal. It is in the face of a poor child that he made his appearance. It is in the image of a disregard that he was physically seen, because every man on this earth can become that kind of individual. Poverty is attainable.

For He shall grow up before Him as a tender plant,

And as a root out of dry ground.

He has no form or comeliness;

And when we see Him,

There is no beauty that we should desire Him.

He is despised and rejected by men,

A Man of sorrows and acquainted with grief.

And we hid, as it were, our faces from Him;

He was despised and we did not esteem Him. – Isaiah 53:2-3

 

For unto us a Child is born,

Unto us a Son is given;

And the government will be upon His shoulder.

And his name will be called

Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God,

Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.

Of the increase of His Government and peace

There will be no end – Isaiah 9:6-7

It is this two-fold truth we forget in this season. There is beauty in abundance when it does not consume us from the inside out. I love Christmas and all it has to offer in the physical. Yet my heart needs to engage with where it truly is. If I removed the gifts, the bells and whistles…would I still hold onto truth? Humanity is in deep need of truth, poverty and lack does not define us. We need not spend our all in the name of Christmas Day. We need not feel the burden of shame and loneliness. Christ was birthed so that we could see firsthand that we have this two-fold truth in him.

  1. Life is hard and poverty is a reality. We share in his suffering for this time perhaps, yet we are not defined by our struggle in life.
  2. We have a life of joy in him. One that is removed from temporary happiness this season brings. We have comfort and peace when we find him in the truth of his being and nature.

Blessed are the poor in spirit,

For theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

Blessed are those who mourn,

For they will be comforted.

Blessed are the meek,

For they shall inherit the earth – Matthew 5:3-5

This day needs to remain the fragrance of a child born into poverty overcoming the stench of being left an orphan, fending for oneself in a broken world. Jesus was born as a physical sign of the Father’s heart for humanity and his desire to be known. So as we commemorate this day as a symbol of Jesus, I pray my heart will stop for a moment and engage with the truth behind all the fuss. Enjoying the lights, the fun and the beauty of this season is wonderful…yet I want to engage my soul with truth. I pray that humanity will truly remember the child Jesus who grew up in poverty and lived a simple life so that others may know he is accessible and deeply in love with a broken world. Tis the season to break my heart and see the truth of a broken man who became an eternal King.

And this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent – John 17:3

 

 

 

Standard

Dark night, whispers of light

photo-1422640805998-18a4dd89bec2

How easily the struggles of life steals the beauty of the Lord, oh how quickly the trials overcome us. So easily I forget the beauty within the process and the anchoring every storm brings into my life. As I find myself swept to and fro by the winds of adversity I am reminded that all things work for the good of the Lord. This is truly becoming a song in my wilderness called life and pain.  My heart may be shattered for this time, but there too shall be a day where I will look back and see the leadership, tender love and beauty of the Lord:

to grant to those who mourn in Zion—to give them a beautiful headdress instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning, the garment of praise instead of a faint spirit; that they may be called oaks of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that he may be glorified. They shall build up the ancient ruins; they shall raise up the former devastations; they shall repair the ruined cities, the devastations of many generations. (Isaiah 61:3-4)

This blog will dialogue about this process of finding hope amidst the storm. Finding relief for the aching soul when pain and turmoil billows over us. When faced with this deep discomfort, I have found this to be my anchor, my journey into the heart of the Father. Growing up in a ‘good’ Christian home I have been taught that ‘having it together’ is good. I am here to denounce this ‘shallow accusation’ upon the souls deep need for intimacy. The soul beckons to bleed, to feel the anguish and to be comforted by the Father at all times. The Lord is not ashamed of our turmoil, he longs for us to find our hearts dependent upon the healing comfort of a friend. It is then that the Spirit of truth comes and releases our pain as we exchange the ashes of self for the beauty of his healing power.

Hear my prayer, O Lord; let my cry come to you! Do not hide your face from me in the day of my distress! Incline your ear to me; answer me speedily in the day when I call! 

…My heart is struck down like grass and has withered; I forget to eat my bread. Because of my loud groaning my bones cling to my flesh,

…that he looked down from his holy height; from heaven the Lord looked at the earth, to hear the groans of the prisoners, to set free those who were doomed to die, (extracted from Psalm 102)

Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words. And he who searches hearts knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God. (Romans 8:26-27)

There is a need to exhale the pain in order to inhale the Lord’s comfort and truth. So here I find myself with yet another tragic incident to hit my family (due to the sensitivity of the matter I will refrain from elaborating). When something this tragic hits so close to home, you are left with the wind knocked out of you. I liken this blow to being punched in the gut, you find yourself disoriented and gasping for air, while you lie there in fetal position…trying to make sense of what the heck just happened. In the first few moments of being gutted I felt the need to just say ‘the right’ prayers and speak the right words. I have been taught the value of agreement, yet in those few moments I forgot the value of grieving and anger bubbling up on the inside of my being. In these moments I started exhale my pain and start to inhale the empathy of Jesus in those weak groans. One evening as the dust of reality settled, I sat down on the floor of a room and just allowed my heart to break. In an instant my walls of pretense was broken down and I was weeping uncontrollably, anger, pain, anxiety, confusion all seeping from my gaping wound…my cries resembled primal groans from my belly. Broken and groaning in the ocean of my pain.

In my weakness I was met by the comfort of the Lord’s truth. Like a whisper of light in the darkness of my night. Finding that the Lord is truly near the brokenhearted and that within him we find hope. Standing in the truth of my pain, the festering anger was seen and the weariness of my soul exposed. I can describe my encounter with the Lord as standing in the cold dark of the night and beholding the sky…realizing that the night too has beauty. There are stars in the night sky, a chilly breeze that is crisp and refreshing to my lungs. Hope in the Lord is simply this – finding that there is an eternal reality to which we can set our eyes. Even as my heart bled I was marked with the hope that this life is painful yet fleeting. That the Lord stands in justice over my anguish and that of my family’s and that I am fully justified in my tears, anger and accusation. More than this I could feel the Lord’s heart and his pain in the moment with me. I would like to stress this – the Lord delights in the dialogue that is raw and real.

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. For as we share abundantly in Christ’s sufferings, so through Christ we share abundantly in comfort too. (2 Corinthians 1:3-4)

But we have this treasure in jars of clay, to show that the surpassing power belongs to God and not to us. We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not driven to despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed; always carrying in the body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be manifested in our bodies.(2 Corinthians 4:7-10)

The journey of life is harsh and painful beyond understanding. The very image portrayed in the life and existence of Jesus, he too became a man and bore the scars of life. Innocence bore shame, wholeness bore brokenness and beauty bore ashes. It is this character about the Lord I am invited into in this time. The knowing that he is fully man, yet fully God…possessing the fullness of humanity and the fullness of glory. I am seeing how I am invited into the fellowship of his suffering, seeing how real of a man Jesus truly was. Nothing has ripped me apart more than the Lord knowing what it feels like to feel the tragedy of this life.

Then he said to them, My soul is very sorrowful, even to death; remain here, and watch with me. And going a little farther he fell on his face and prayed, saying, My Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me; nevertheless, not as I will, but as you will. (Matthew 26:38-39)

Now from the sixth hour there was darkness over all the land until the ninth hour. And about the ninth hour Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying, Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani? that is, My God, my God, why have you forsaken me? (Matthew 27:45-47)

Yet, there is a hope in the story of the only God who died on a cross, not so show bravado, but to show courage midst the pain. We have this hope marked on our hearts by his spirit living on the inside. In every moment of Jesus’s hurt, he dialogued with the Father. He exchanged his pain for the hope of knowing the Father’s nature and love. In my tenderness I am engaging my heart and my mind with truth and allowing myself to feel my pain. This is how I stand in my weakness and make sense of my pain. I agree through the anguish and I verbalize my turmoil to him, knowing that I get to partner with the Lord by fixing my spirit on truth even as I allow my emotions to be justified in its rawness. I can stand and cry in confidence knowing that my pain will be justified in the age to come and that the Lord has empathy with me. I can also stand rooted in the word even as the pain billows over me. This is my inheritance in Christ, that I am more than what the ashes of my life says. This is my comfort, I can partner and engage my soul even in my hour of deep need. The Lord has given me his spirit to align my emotions to truth even as I process my afflictions.

…what is the plan of the mystery hidden for ages in God who created all things, so that through the church the manifold wisdom of God might now be made known to the rulers and authorities in the heavenly places.  This was according to the eternal purpose that he has realized in Christ Jesus our Lord, in whom we have boldness and access with confidence through our faith in him. So I ask you not to lose heart over what I am suffering for you, which is your glory. 

For this reason I bow my knees before the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth is named, that according to the riches of his glory he may grant you to be strengthened with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith—that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may have strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God. Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever. Amen. (Ephesians 3:9-21)

I am praying for them. I am not praying for the world but for those whom you have given me, for they are yours. All mine are yours, and yours are mine, and I am glorified in them. And I am no longer in the world, but they are in the world, and I am coming to you. Holy Father, keep them in your name, which you have given me, that they may be one, even as we are one. (John 17:9-11)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Standard

Dare to Dream

 

How dare you dream?

How dare you have desires?

Spitting remarks

Constant reminders

How dare you dream?

photo-1439902315629-cd882022cea0

 

How dare you think yourself to be better?

How dare you dream?

Nothing more

Something less

Look around

Fallow ground

Upon which you stand

Soil unplowed

Nothing more

Something less

How dare you dream?

 

How dare you have desires?

Lashing remarks

Soul scarred

Nothing more

Something less

How dare you dream?

 

Open your eyes

See this

You will never be

This is who you are

Make peace

Nothing more

Something less

How dare you dream?

 

How dare you have desires?

Lashing remarks

Soul scarred

Vision impaired

Heart in disrepair

Infertile ground

Upon which you stand

Nothing more

Something less

How dare you dream?

 

How dare you have desires?

Days beat you down

Lashing remarks

Soul bleeding

Night settles

Deep, dark night

Weight of night

Nothing more

Always less

How dare you dream?

 

How dare you have desires?

Night has settled

Comfortable night

Dreams become a nightmarish nostalgia

Darkness engulfs the dream

Nothing more

Always less

How dare you dream?

 

Night settled

Life drained

Hope stained

Nothing more

Settle for less

How dare you dream?

 

Dare to dream

Whispers the night

Dare to dream

Voices in the night

Dare to dream

Something more

Never less

Dare to dream

 

Hope thunders

Dare to dream

Shattering night

Dare to dream

Break in light

Something more

Never less

Dare to dream

Night becomes dawn

Dawn becomes day

Dare to dream

Dare to have desires

Dare to have vision

The voice of the One who dreams

The one who dreams in the night

 

Dare to dream

Days are written out

Dreams jotted down

Chapters envisioned

Dare to dream

 

Father of glory

Consumed with desire

Obsessive dream

Unformed substance

Shaped into existence

Something more

Never less

Dare to dream

 

This life

Shaped from a dream

Fashioned by vision

Shaped by desire

Something more

Never less

Dare to dream

 

Standard