Walking it Out – Part 2: HOPE

Twelve years ago, in February and March, two life changing events occurred. The first, was an encounter during our ending worship song, in which for a moment of earthly time, I was no longer in the room. I was elsewhere, but still in a worship setting, and I was beginning to see what I was Called to do. It was but the first piece, the second of which came later in the day with my introduction to Isaiah 61 through Luke 4:18.

Five weekends later came the second event. This one plunged me into the most devastating nightmare of my life. Had this been a one weekend thing, it would not have had as great an effect. No, this was the seemingly never ending nightmare, that just continued to unfold and get worse.

This began what unfolded as a strategic assault, not just on one front, but many. There were too many layers, and too many people and circumstances, and too many dimensions for me to sort out by myself. I learned things about people and situations I never wanted to know. All my core understandings and beliefs were shaken at best, shattered at worst. But, I still had Him. That never changed. That never will.

I did my best. It’s all I could do. Did I make all the right decisions along the way, I’m sure not.. I made many mistakes, but I was trying to be obedient as best I knew how in the midst of hell, and even my mistakes were counted as good in the trying.

There were things said by those whose words carried great weight, and I took a lot of them to heart when I really should have believed in me, and Him, more. But I was just a 40 year old kid in the Kingdom, actually pretty doggone naive. Turns out, I was in the middle of other peoples messes which only made more complications. And the enemy was directly and covertly in the mix. At some point.. the war became as well a battlefield in the mind.

Sooo… after about 18 months of this nightmare, things began to turn. A door opened for me to attend a new church closer to my hometown. And God began the healing process.

I remember just a couple of months into the whole ordeal, looking up at the night sky and saying to God.. “You’re not going to rescue me this time, are You?” I’d gotten quite used to Him as my rescue. As it now turns out, I was not quite accurate. Although walking through was the course, NOW the rescue is in full operation.

This is where my new son comes in. I said in the last post that he was helping me to sort some of this stuff. But in all actuality, it’s more than that. I’m being rescued from lies and pain and mindsets and even the grip of the enemy. More on that in a bit. The healing continues. I want to share what I wrote in my journal the other morning, as I was processing this current portion of the journey.

This statement had been made, oh about a week prior and then another. And they just kept resounding…  Here’s the journal entry…

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“True love takes risks”

“I will risk your anger to guard your heart”

OK – when did that happen – sitting here after writing that statement – I guess thinking about it and how profound and beautiful it is, and how incredible it is to be loved that much – Suddenly my heart swells with so much love, in a way I’ve not felt in a long long time.

And I find myself asking –

Am I really ready to have my heart wide open again? To Love without fear? To love without reservation, walls, guard or caution?

I don’t think I ever saw that as a possibility again. In fact, I forgot what it felt like. I really did.

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Much has happened since that morning, so I did not get to share it. Today I finally sat down with it again. I knew that morning I needed to share it. Maybe I just needed more pieces first. So here’s today’s journaling.. with and without maybe some editing. 🙂

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Perfect love casts out fear.

In this process, there are some things that have been presented, sometimes in type; sometimes – a voice over a phone line; sometimes with an expression, a look that can be recalled with the tone of voice and emphasis. These replay. Sometimes when I least expect it. Mostly, just when needed. They’ve become not only building blocks, but a sword in my hand to do battle with – truths to cut down lies.

It’s working – quickly and effectively.

It’s most often in the uncomfortable silences – seemingly left alone, that the thoughts come, the ‘voices’ that lie, that challenge, that try to unglue.

But these nuggets of truth – you are loved, you are safe, I won’t leave, I won’t harm you, I will protect you, your heart is important to me… You are important to me; you are important to God, etc – these are beginning to combat the lies. And these are beginning to combat words previously on repeat. [Some of those truths have been spoken outright, some ‘gleaned’ from other statements, but still given by God to me as truths to grab hold of.]

When fear says, ‘I can’t trust this’, I remember: ‘I’ve been given a son”… ‘Will you visit?” “Certainly”.

When fear says – “you’ve been abandoned” – Love says, here I am, I am, “I’m not slow, I’m patient”.

When fear says – I won’t be rescued, Love said I’m rescuing you now.

When fear says – I’m scared of …. the dark, what I don’t understand, the pain, etc. “I am your Protector”; ‘I am very protective of your eye”; “I will fight to the death to see your dreams and your calling come to pass”; “Have you been fighting for me?””Always”, “since the day I met you”.

 “You are part of My household, I am obligated to protect you”

“Michael has been sent to guard you in this process”

God wants me free, even more than I want to be free.

He said He was going to heal me.. every molecule of my being. Though I’ve ‘reminded’ Him, and me of this promise, I think I may have given up on being that healed and restored. But He’s doing it, NOW, in ways that are so much greater then I could have hoped for.

I’ve learned truth about Him in the last couple of weeks, much in part due to these truths that have been coming my way through Love. When the lies come, the truth comes also, and I can grab what’s true and choose it over what had appeared true. Some of that is choosing to believe in the someone whom was sent to help, with an overwhelming amount of evidence to back it up. Every time I’ve done this, more truth has been revealed. And in the process, that which was stolen or misplaced, is starting to get set back in it’s rightful place. I’m being rebuilt from the inside out.

For months I thought, this nightmare will be over soon. For years then I thought, anytime now, we’ll turn the corner. For years I had my eyes on the wrong reality. Cause for years, what seemed like a nightmare for which there was no remedy, was actually a time of preparation, to walk in the promise first given that year, before all hell broke loose. To be honest.. the greatest blessings and encounters of my life have come throughout the last 12 years (God encounters). New history being made with Him. New understanding released. You can’t walk anyone else through something you’ve not walked through, nor can you truly understand it. There have been giftings unwrapped and released. There has been teaching and exposure to Kingdom realities that might never have come, had I not had the catalysts for change.

Though I can’t say I yet understand what really happened, or why He allowed it, I can finally say, with full belief, that’s it going to be ok. I can breath. I’m going to be ok. Redeemed and restored to the fullness of His original creative purposes. I will walk in all that He destined for me. And I have this nugget to hold on to in the midst of the journey:

My son has seen my best, and will not stop believing in it and fighting for it, until the fullness of its manifestation is in the now. And when doubt rises, I will continue to knock it down, cause God is faithful. What He said He will do. His words will not return to Him void.

No one really understands your journey. Maybe not even those closest to you. But God does and He is determined to collect His entire inheritance. He is not bound by time, or anything other than our will. But, I think He even knows His way around that. He is not afraid to move Heaven and Earth and even “Hell” if need be, on your behalf. In the season of shaking, let Him shake it all. He will be faithful to rebuild if you let Him, and what remains will be unshakable…

“whose voice then shook the earth; but now He has promised, saying, Yet once more I shake not only the earth, but also heaven.”  Now this, “Yet once more,” indicates the removal of those things that are being shaken, as of things that are made, that the things which cannot be shaken may remain.
Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom which cannot be shaken, let us have grace, by which we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear”   Hebrews 12:26-8 (NKJV)
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Oops.. I did it again…

I knew I shouldn’t have done it. But I did.. oops, now here I am, again, having sat at the computer past my ‘allotted time’. And as for being on the blog, yikes, I was only going to check to see if this week’s photo challenge had been posted yet. But, there were a few notifications (hmmm sounds alot like FB… notifications, good links to check out, articles to read, videos to watch… translation=time!) and one of them was a blog I don’t think I’d checked out until today.

So here I am writing once again. My heart is not really that heavy, I’m not really feeling all that sad or depressed, and yet, I think I could sit down and cry. The post was a question regarding the start up of a parenting go-to blog. “Was it necessary” or a “good idea”? Heck yeah! 🙂  Kudos to this mom. She was drafted (though it may look more like she was drug into) into the darker side of the world of todays teens. I almost qualified that statement to American teens, but then I remembered, I’ve talked to a few and they were not American. 

This mom, has been introduced to the nightmare toooooo many teens and children call life. EVERYDAY life. Some are bullied – mostly by their peers, but too often also by the very people who they’re supposed to look up to or be protected by. That in itself is a created nightmare – one that is pretty much inescapable. Some live in what we would normally consider abusive situations. Some live with more pressure than their young minds and innocent hearts were created to deal with. In short… pain. These young people live with too much stress and heartache and it produces pain. The pain is real. The pain, too often becomes just too overwhelming. 

That pain begins to have a life of it’s own, and one does either everything they can to feed it, or kill it and almost always, hide it – especially from those who love them. None of these are helpful, nor healthy and only lead to an increase of more and more pain and the by products thereof. 

I will not belabor this any further, it needs no glorification. But it is real, and it’s past time that is known. People need compassion and to treat each other at the very least humanely, regardless of age. 

In anycase… KUDOS to the mom who wrote this post, and in the midst of her own dealings, had the overriding view that in the process, people could get together and help one another. It sure is a lot more productive than just expressing our hurts, fear, frustrations etc.  Good for her. Good for her, and those like her. 

We have no idea, just what deep reserves we each have, way down deep within us, that can be called upon to do great and awesome things, just when we least expect it. 🙂

Link

The Spiritual Avalanche – Steve Hill Vision

Well, this was not what I came on here to write, but a new post captured my eye. Actually, it wasn’t new to me, I’d read it recently in another forum and sent it on to a couple of pastors. The link posted is to a vision that the Pastor Steve Hill had which another minister posted on his blog site.

There’s a line in this posting that has captured my attention, yet again, which for me is like a tag-team with a line from the election campaign. Multiple times Mitt Romney, and other Conservatives, had been accused of wanting to take America “back into the dark ages”. The correlating phrase from the posting here is at the beginning of this sentence: “You guys are old-fashioned ‘holiness,’ we are modern day ‘grace.’ You live in bondage while we can do anything we want.”

I turned fifty this year, and am well on the way to fifty-one already. Fifty is sort of a strange age. You don’t necessarily feel old, and are not necessarily old. But I remember thinking when I was young, – even at 20-30 – that FIFTY was OLD, almost ancient even. Stupid. And old people, were just that, old people – old people who had had their moments, and were pretty much just hanging in there the best they could until it was their time to go home. Again – Stupid. Now, the older I get, the more I am appreciating the wisdom of age. Of course, those who are older and more experienced than I. 

We, as a country, a society, and the Church, have slowly but surely gotten away from and even tried to tear up, most of our good foundations. While God will remove broken and bad foundations, but keeps the good in place, for they are firm, steadfast, and can be counted on to hold up what is built upon them. I’m not saying it’s time to go back to the in your face pulpit pounding, finger shaking accusing preaching. But there are simple Gospel truths, like God is a Holy God, that we must get back to. I love the line, still, in the Psalms, where the psalmists says, ‘Teach my Thy ways, that I might walk in them”. His paths are sure and steadfast, not slippery slopes. His intentions are pure. He is loving and gracious and compassionate, yet He is Holy, Just, Pure and His ways are Righteous. 

I really believe it is time to get back to the basics.  We’d all actually be better off and happier for it – believe it, or not. While it is good to keep moving forward, we can only do so successfully if we do so building on good foundations, for the right reasons, with the right motives, and in the right way. 

But hey, what do I know, I’m just a little kid, who’s only been around for half of a century. One who’s even been finding out recently, that so much of what we are living with now, began decades before I was even born. We don’t seem to understand, that it is generations that follow  us that have to live with the fruit of what we’ve sown. What would happen in the generations to come, if we would begin to advance with the future generations in mind, building something that they can build upon, instead of handing them more bad fruit to attempt to undo or just ‘deal with’. Yes, it would mean ‘backtracking’ a bit to get things back on track so that we can begin again – on good foundations.