Saturday, May 1, 2010
I can see...
This lovely painting is by Brian Jekel.
The oppression of darkness falls at odd times. Sometimes, no matter how close we are to our LORD, we are under the spell of it and we don't realize it's happening. This nasty phenomenon happened to Rod and me yesterday and lasted through much of the day.
Now for those of you who live in the Asheville area, wasn't yesterday just about the most beautiful day you can recall? The air was warm, the breeze was even warm, everything that was gray and black is now being overtaken with GREEN, glorious and wonderful! The dogwoods are full of flowers and the grass is littered with their beautiful blossoms. The robins, cardinals, sparrows, blue jays, mockingbirds, and even the elusive but gorgeous goldfinches were flittering all around us yesterday. The skies were a deep blue and nearly cloudless all day long. The sun shone brightly and for all of these things I've just mentioned our souls should have been refreshed by the goodness of God. Yet, we walked around in an ignorant stupor as though blind. Blind.
Think of this from Mark chapter eight..."Then He came to Bethsaida; and they brought a blind man to Him, and begged Him to touch him. So He took the blind man by the hand and led him out of the town. And when he had spit on his eyes and put His hands on him. He asked him if he saw anything. And he looked up and said, "I see men like trees walking." Then he put His hands on his eyes again and made him look up. And he was restored and saw everyone clearly."
My favorite prayer is, "Jesus, save me." If I feel the oppression of the enemy coming on, I walk around saying it until the oppression lifts. That prayer requires KNOWING that I am being oppressed. On a day like yesterday...how could I be oppressed? And by seven o'clock in the evening I was thinking about Jack Daniels, and red, red wine and a benadryl. Me. I was thinking about those things as I listened to my Gracie splash around in the tub. I even spoke it out to Rod, who lay there next to me in the darkness of our room. He reminded us of our dear friend, William Mayhew's, profound reason for his continued sobriety, "And then what?". And then what? Yeah, I can get drunk or high and check out for awhile but when I sober up...all of my problems will still be there. Plus, I'll probably feel horrible physically and even more certain: spiritually.
My Savior hung there beaten to an unrecognizable pulp, bleeding and naked suffering unto death and for what? So, I can stop trusting Him when oppression comes? So, I can be a fairweather friend? Well, actually, yes, He would take me back if I did decide to check out for awhile. But, sometimes we forget. Yesterday, I felt like we were hidden from Him under a coconut shell in a game of hide and seek. I said, FELT LIKE. Feelings lie. Praise God, it's true.
I heard the faint voice of my husband rise to my ears in a memory, "Are you gonna trust God, or not? Is He a man that He can lie? Is God a liar, Jenn? Is HE? If you're gonna trust God, then trust Him and stop wallowing in fear! So, I'm asking you again, are you gonna trust God, or not?"
I'm doing Beth Moore's Esther Bible study. On Wednesday we watched the video session where she confided that our whole lives can be derailed by fear. She disclosed what the game of "What IF" really means: What I Fear...see that? What IF. What I fear. Then, she opened the truth and declared, "more than any other command from Genesis to Revelation, God and His messengers command us: DO NOT FEAR! DO NOT FEAR! DO NOT FEAR!" It's a command, not a suggestion.
By eight o'clock I put my little one to bed. Read her Bible story, the devotion and prayed over her in spite of the spiritual funk I was in. I kissed her sweet face goodnight and Rod and I made our way outside to enjoy the last bit of the gorgeous day the Lord had made. Then, we rejoiced and were glad in it.
He whispered to me, "I didn't leave, you know. I've got this all under control. Hang on and trust Me. Hang on. You can do this." I remembered His goodness to us: we're all well here, housed, clothed, fed and taken care of by His faithful, loving and gracious nail-scarred hand.
I said it again, only louder now, "Jesus, save me." And then He lifted the veil of darkness. He whispered, "I already have."
I can see.