When I cry, the tears come without bidding. I have seen the glory of His face and my heart knows no other response. My Father has come close to me and He shows no sign of leaving. I, who have always feared abandonment; I, who have never believed I was truly worth staying by–I, I am the one to whom He draws near. More than that, He spends every day assuring me that I have been the only one who has ever been a proponent of our separation. But, in mercy He made nothing of the distance between us and quenched my rebellion in His love. Can you find a God like that in all the earth, who is worthy of all your praise because He has won your whole heart?
“Can you draw me into Your hideaway again, Lord?” I plead. “I don’t feel brave enough to meet the challenges that lie in wait for me today. I just want to enjoy the pleasure of being with You. I don’t think I’m cut out for anything besides resting at Your feet, hearing Your voice and knowing that You–and not I–am mighty and true.”
But, My Child, that is not all I want for you. I want you to be mighty in Me. I do not pour Myself into you merely to let you sit and be still. There are seasons and moments when you do, but this is only so that you can rise and stand and walk and run in all of the missions that I give you.
You can get up and go forward because the God who has always ministered to you while you waited in stillness before Him is the same One who has already gone before you, securing a victory for you that you need only trust Him enough to walk into. Is that so hard?
I sit, uneasy. “With the world resting on my shoulders, I feel left alone by You,” I tell my Lord. “I can’t understand how I’m ever going to see You in this mess. I just don’t feel that I have enough strength to hold out for what You’re doing. Do You think You could give me a break, or at least let me know that we’re in this together?”
Oh, My Child, could it be that I would leave you? Is there a way that I could forget that you needed Me? Beloved, you must understand this: You may forget that you have needs, but I do not forget that you are as you are in My hands. I do not grow mystified by your condition nor do I forget what love looks like to you.
But, My Favored Child, you must understand that I will use many things to grow you that you may not understand in the moment. Yet, little one, do not question My love. My love is what supersedes your understanding with grace that is too great for you to fathom. Come, come near Me and you will find your rest–not in answers, but in the One who answers you.
God and I sit together. It is early. We are together because I have a need. I don’t know anyone else with whom I can spill my heart and know that nothing is lost. So, with boldness I speak. My heart I put in His hands with every word that springs from the well within. And He listens. He does not tell me what I should think, but He does not leave my thinking as it is either.
He quietly waits for me to hear Him. And He calls my name, “Beloved.”
I have not chosen you because you have it all together. My love does not demand a protocol. I only want you to withstand no separation from Me. It’s simple what I want for you, Dearest One. I am after your heart and here you are giving it to Me. Do you think I could be anymore pleased with you than I am now? Be still and know the favor of the Lord who saved you and now supplies you with all you need. Amen.
The new year looks to steal quietly across the landscape of my life. There is no big splash this time, just the whispered closing of this latest annal of my experience. Peace is present with us as I behold God putting it upon the shelf that houses every minor and major detail of my life thus far. And anticipation builds as God turns then and invites me to come sit upon His lap. He reaches for a new book, its unfamiliar cover a dusky color I cannot quite describe. When He opens it, my breath catches at the glimpse of a virginal sheaf, creamy and unmarred by words, by the touch of His Spirit’s call of destiny.
I do not know what to think. I turn from what will become the next record of my life to the One who will make that record be what it will be. I don’t know what to expect from Him–I cannot read His face. What does He have in mind?
“Lord,” I venture, “what are You thinking?” A part of my heart quakes with uncertainty: Am I ready to hear what He has to say?
And then He speaks.
Darling, it is good for you to be after My heart like this. I know this past year was tough and by all reasonable accounts you should be less than eager to abandon all to Me for another year. If anyone should choose to rate My track record, they should be no less than confused, if not angry with Me for how I have handled you.
I have not held you back from pain, I have not spared your spirit despair. Most of the questions you’ve asked, I have not answered. The plan I’m working I have not fully revealed. But, My child, through it all you’ve seen this single object of My heart: I want your heart.
You have not been afraid to give it. You have not let anything hold you back from Me. And what within you separated you from Me, you trusted Me to alter for the sake of My glory and your unending pleasure in My love.
So here we sit at the end of this year, and your eyes are not on what has past or even straining to see what lies ahead. Rather, you lift them up to Me, wanting to know just what I might have planned for this moment, just what I want to show you of Myself. This is what life is about. Life is what Iam.