Lifting My Eyes

Sometimes when people hear about what the Lord is doing in our family they make a statement:  “I could never do that.”  The truth is that without Him, we can’t either.  Sometimes we stride, sometimes we stumble, but always the ground is taken one step at a time. When I’m struggling, the best thing for me to do is to pick up my pen and journal.  There’s something about putting my thoughts down on paper that makes it easier to sort the good from the bad.  The Spirit led me to let you peek at one of my rough spots as a big hug when the path ahead seems difficult.  It may not always be easy, but He is always good.  When my heart lifts its gaze up from the rocks in the way, I can see His rainbow of love over my life again.

Friday, November 16th, 2012

Lord, it hit me tonight so quickly that it almost took my breath away:  [In this moment,] I don’t want to go.  All these changes, all the work of this year-long goodbye.  Letters, prayer cards, friend-raising, presentations, decluttering, de-stuffing, rent or sell?, storing, packing, decision-making.  Prayer.

Come be with me, Daddy.  Hold my hand.  Wait, it’s clinging to my kitchen counter with all its strength.  Peel back the fingers, lovingly, one by one, and fill them with Yourself.  Help me again to want what You want.  To trust the plans You have for our family.  Give me kisses for orphan faces, momma-bear hugs for their hurts, and laughter for their antics.  Give me tender wisdom to guide team members out of their comfort zones and warm grace to welcome them in as friends.  Give me Your love for them all, and for myself.  Wrap me up in it.  Your banner over me is love.  You are good, and like David in the waiting, I will trust in You.  Let my soul glorify the Lord.

His love over each of us is brilliant.

I lift up my eyes to the mountains –
where does my help come from?
 My help comes from the Lord,
the Maker of heaven and earth.

 He will not let your foot slip –
he who watches over you will not slumber;
 indeed, he who watches over Israel
will neither slumber nor sleep.

 The Lord watches over you –
the Lord is your shade at your right hand;
the sun will not harm you by day,
nor the moon by night.

 The Lord will keep you from all harm –
he will watch over your life;
 the Lord will watch over your coming and going
both now and for evermore.  Psalm 121

Remembering to Breathe

I’ve been flopping around like a fish on the sand the last few weeks.  Motivationally bipolar, I’ve alternated between feverish bouts of productivity and crawling into a mental hidey-hole with a good book and better chocolate.  There’s been a lot to celebrate.  About two-thirds of our house interior was treated to a hip new shade of paint thanks to a slew of hard work and helpers.  Two trunk loads were surrendered to Goodwill along with my best intentions to hold a garage sale.  An entire van load (seats removed) of treasure was packaged and priced for a kids’ consignment sale.  Ezekiel’s 4th birthday was ushered in with much rejoicing, brownie sundaes, and the humorously needful instructions, “Swallow your spit before you blow out the candles, sweetheart.”  But my spirit has been stifled for want of water and fresh air.

There’s no excuse for it, really.  Bibles outnumber the people in our household by at least 3 to 1, a different translation available for every day of the week.  My iPod is loaded with anointed worship waiting for me to push play.  I have a full stable of my favorite blue Papermates and open country in my journal.

Why do I make time to sort out the laundry but neglect my heart?  Then why am I surprised when my attitude becomes brittle and my downtime fails to refresh?  I know better.  So why do I suffocate myself, thinking that my to-do list enables me to defy spiritual gravity until I find myself gasping and coated with sand again?

My mother-in-law showed me her name engraved in silver the other day, eyes lit up with new-bible excitement.  I caught a whiff of something sweet in the air:  my first love.  I remembered the joy of opening the word and diving into His promises, His love for me in histories, His presence hovering over phrases.

I knew it was time to put the schedule back in God’s capable hands and gaze upon His beauty.  Time to take Jesus up on His offer to be rest for my soul when I’m weary and burdened.  Time to soak off the sand in living water and inhale the fragrance of His grace, to quit pushing out leaves and let Him grow some blossoms within me.

IMG_3451

Let all that I am wait quietly before God,
for my hope is in him.
 He alone is my rock and my salvation,
my fortress where I will not be shaken.  Psalm 62:5,6

My heart has heard you say, “Come and talk with me.”
And my heart responds, “Lord, I am coming.” Psalm 27:8