Hide and Seek- He Finds Me, Always

IMG_2085

 

“I can’t outrun this heart I’m tethered to. With every step I collide with you. You don’t hold back, relentless in pursuit, at every turn, I come face to face with You.”

I’m constantly running, constantly hiding. I busy myself, my mind, and my environment in an attempt to avoid the silence and the isolation. Because in silence and isolation, there is room for questions, and room to ponder the honest answers, and I fear the honest answers will reveal my inner human. The one who is weaker than I want, more flawed than I imagine, and more influenced by circumstances than I care to admit. In my mind, pain is weakness, and sadness is only a product of succumbing to pain. With this mindset, I allow pain to reside for only a moment, and then begin to pretend it no longer exist.

I know, this mentality has some value to it, we do have to move on, and not wallow in pain. However, if we’re not honest with ourselves, and even more importantly, others, we can never heal. If you want a wound on your body to heal, you can’t just pretend it isn’t there. You have to treat it, which hurts. And you have to protect it. Of course, you can’t coddle it, and just stop living either. Our souls are the same way.

I’m learning how to live outside this irrational belief, but it’s hard. It makes relationship building difficult. I don’t know how to let people into my “real” world, because, honestly, I don’t always know how to get there either. Maybe I run so much, I don’t always know where to stop and call home. I have a hard time in friendships letting people know what I need from them, and sometimes what I need is more than they know how to give. I need people to come after me, to pull me out of the places I hide, to stop me from my constant running. To call out this fleeing spirit in me, and encourage me to stillness and grace. I need them to take the first step that I often can’t take myself, and show me the pattern of grace, of friendship, and of loving.

Not everyone gets this, and not everyone can do it, and that’s ok. But I’m learning my Lord is the master of this hide and seek game I constantly find myself in. He always finds me. I am His daughter, and He knows me. He knows how my mind works. He knows the places I hide, the times I run, and He knows all the things I avoid. He brings them to me, wrapped in grace, peace, and perspective. In His arms, I know I have found a safe place. I am reminded I don’t have to run, I don’t have to hide just to avoid the things that give me fear and grief. Pain is not weakness, and sadness is more than a result of succumbing to pain. Yet, I still run and I still hide.

Yet, His grace doesn’t stop. He is always there. Every turn. He is waiting for me where I hide, and He is running beside me when I run. ALWAYS enticing me to be still. To be honest. To be real. He calls me out of hiding, and teaches my feet to hold their ground. He loves me, and shows me how to be loved, by Him, others, and myself. He shows me the pattern of His dance, and holds my hand as I find my balance. He never leaves me to dance alone. Even when I try to run, thinking it’s safer, He won’t let go of my hand, and He always sends the right people to join in the dance with me, just when I need them. He shows them the steps too, and teaches us His rhythm.

I’m fragile, and I’m delicate. I don’t have all the answers, and I don’t always understand. But I don’t have to run, I don’t have to hide. And when I do, He is always going to find me. I can’t hide from Him. I can only hide in Him. 

 

 

Advertisements

Taste And See.

bre's pictures 061

“In the darkness I’ll dance, in the shadows I’ll sing… There is strength when I say I will praise You.” -Rend Collective

God is good, no doubt. I’ve experienced and felt the incomprehensible reality of this statement in my life over and over.

But truth be told, sometimes life is still hard.

Sometimes prayers go unanswered.

Sometimes dreams shatter.

Sometimes sickness takes over.

Sometimes confusion leaves us broken.

And sometimes fear feels crippling.

I’ve walked through each of these valleys. I’ve felt what it is like to not know, to not know why, to not know how, to not know when. As I know you have too. And I’ve sought God in these times, I’ve looked for Him in the pain this life brings. But if I’m to be honest, I don’t think I ever expected to truly find Him. Or at least, I didn’t know what it meant to truly find Him. I’ve merely called out for and expected an artificial version of God to show up. A version that calls to me from a distance, and merely encourages me to “get through”.

But this artificial version of God is not our reality. We serve a God who does not call out to us from a distance, but one who walks right beside us, in the darkness, in the valley, and in the desert. And He does not simply encourage us to “get through”, but calls us to stand up, and walk with confidence, knowing that His sovereignty reigns above our circumstance, and that because of that, we can find joy and peace in the midst of our difficulties.

We have to remember that He is just as good now in the confusion as He was in the triumph. He hasn’t changed. Don’t forget the days He redeemed you, the days He spoke to you, the days He showed you His great favor. Take heed to the words of David when he said, “I will remember the deeds of the Lord, yes I will remember your miracles of long ago. I will consider all your works, and meditate on your holy deeds. ” (Psalms 77:11-12) Because that God is the same God that is walking right beside you now, and He is the same God that is going to finish with you.

So stop expecting pain. Stop doubting the promises of God. Stop doubting the sovereignty of God. You don’t have to wait for this struggle to end to regain your perspective, to regain your hope, to regain your joy. Find it right now though the presence of God that over powers your situation. Take hold of the presence of God from which all good things come.

So worship Him. Worship Him for all He has done, all he is doing, and all you know He will do. It doesn’t have to make since, but choose to put your faith in front of your pain. And worship Him. Worship Him widely.  Worship Him relentlessly. Worship Him not from the place of fear and doubt you may feel, but worship Him from a place of faith and hope that you know. Worship Him like your already on the mountain. Tell Him He is good. Tell Him You trust Him. Even if you are broken, tell Him He is good. Because He is, and if you keep telling Him, you will remember too.

 

“Oh taste and see that the Lord is good.” ~Psalms 34:8

Grace That Engulfs

IMG_20150602_182326Engulf : To sweep over something so as to surround or cover it completely.

When my sin, weakness, and failures seem to be all that is before me, God quietly reminds me of His ever present and active grace that not only forgives my inadequacies, but engulfs my life by penetrating my heart with peace, overshadowing my fears with His reality, illuminating my shadows with His light, dispelling my doubts with His undeniable truth, and strengthening and equipping me through His ever constant presence.

Worship

IMG_1207

“Therefore, let us come boldly before the throne room of God so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.” Hebrews 4:16

Have you ever taken a moment to realize how beautiful worship is? There are just so many awe-inspiring aspects to it. Going to a Christian university, me and my classmates have the opportunity to gather weekly and share a time of worship together. Gathering with so many individuals from so many different walks of life has created in me new perspectives on worship. It’s a familiar concept that has captivated my heart in a new way.

One aspect to this is diversity. The amount of diversity in one body of believers has really drawn my attention. I think it’s beautiful that so many people, all sharing one common faith, can come together and express this genuinely in so many different forms. No one way better than the next; it’s the combining of them together that paints a beautiful picture. One that points right to Heaven.

Also, there is such a rawness to this atmosphere of worship, an unguarded and pure vulnerability before the throne room of God. A beautiful scene of sincere hearts seeking God’s face in the middle of their own individual plots; fear, doubt, loneliness, sadness, ect. They come unguarded before the throne of God, expecting Him to show up.  And I believe He always does.

Watching my classmates come before the throne room with this diverse sense of vulnerability has truly captivated my heart. If University chapels can be this beautiful, my heart cannot even imagine the endless possibilities of Heaven.