My favorite song these days is You Make me Brave by Amanda Cook. It’s one of those songs that makes we wish I could sing. It refers to Peter’s experience walking on water:Continue reading
About a month ago our basement flooded and I was forced to do the long overdue task of sorting through some boxes I’ve moved around with me since college. I wanted to see the extent of the water damage and throw away anything that couldn’t be salvaged.Continue reading
“Remember how the LORD your God led you all the way in the desert these forty years, to humble you and to test you in order to know what was in your heart, whether or not you would keep his commands. He humbled you, causing you to hunger and then feeding you with manna, which neither you nor your fathers had known, to teach you that man does not live on bread alone but on every word that comes from the mouth of the LORD” (Deut 8:2-3).
There are desert times with the Lord. Times when we wake up desperate for God and find only enough nourishment in the Word for the day. We pant for His presence and yearn for His voice. Those are the weak times, when His grace alone carries us through. We feel frail, brittle and we cling to Him as a sash clings to the waist of a man (Jer 13:11). We are utterly humbled as we realize complete dependence on Him. I spent a lot of years like that. Each morning presented a fresh challenge to trust Him and lean on Him. Many days were spent wearying God with my prayers and cries as I tried to hold on and stand on His word.
Then a few weeks ago I attended a church women’s retreat. It was at a lovely resort and my husband graciously took time off of work to stay with our son so that I could enjoy 36 hours nourishing my depleted spirit. There was plenty of alone time as well as great sessions with an anointed speaker. In the afternoon I sat in my hotel room looking at the autumn brilliance and I realized that at that moment I no longer felt desperate. I mean, I still hungered for God but I didn’t approach him from the standpoint of utter need. Rather, I drew near to the throne of Grace with deep gratitude, joy and fulfillment. I felt like I had to get to know God all over again on different terms – no longer as his needy, fretful child, but now as a peaceful, contented woman. Still a daughter, but now a grown daughter. I saw more of His majesty that day as He was magnified before me as the God of the Universe, not just the shepherd of my needy soul. And I literally asked, “Who are you?” as I felt him right there in my room.
Don’t get me wrong, those feelings of utter need returned again at different times in the weeks since; I experienced them as I faced my rambunctious son after getting too little sleep, and when I felt lonely for God as the busyness of life cascaded over me again, and when nameless insecurities visited my soul. Still, deep inside I know something has changed; I have grown up. There will always be times when I need to crawl into my Father’s lap, but then there are others when I stand before him as a woman, smiling and in love with her Creator.