“Then I said to you, ‘Do not be terrified; do not be afraid. The Lord your God, who is going before you, will fight for you, as He did for you in Egypt, before your very eyes, and in the desert. There you saw how the Lord your God carried you, as a Father carries his son, all the way you went until you reached this place.’” Deuteronomy 1:29-31
The Lord spoke this verse to me this week. It has special significance to me because over two and a half years ago He spoke a similar verse to me from Deuteronomy as He began to take me on a journey of healing…”Today you are going into battle against your enemies. Do not be fainthearted or afraid; do not be terrified or give way to panic before them. For the Lord your God is the one who goes with you to fight for you against your enemies to give you victory.” With the speaking of those words, the Lord began to reclaim and restore my heart. My heart had been so wounded… hardened on the outside and dying on the inside. In a way that only the Lord can, He began a work in my heart that is impossible for me to even attempt to put into words. He took my pain and my hurt upon Himself and in exchange gave me life and hope…and in the process, I experienced the tender loving hands of the Father that my heart had been so desperately dying apart from. Over the last couple of months, I have sensed a deeper place of healing that the Lord desires for my heart. I have known that my heart wasn’t completely whole because the hopelessness and despair that once threatened to drown me still lurks on the distant horizon. I have known it wasn’t completely whole because I am aware that I still have carefully constructed defense mechanisms that protect it from anyone getting too close. If pain or fear threatens, my heart can throw up a fortress and take me to a place that is completely void of any emotion. While those walls are great for protecting my heart from hurt, they also protect my heart from receiving the full expression of love that I know Christ desires to give me . Honestly, I am tired of living with walls. I desire real, true intimacy. I desire pure, perfected love. I desire deep, life-giving connection. So once again, I have found myself at a place where I desire to go deeper…a place that I know in my own strength and power I have no way to get to…a place that I must rely solely on Jesus to do a work in my heart that I cannot do on my own.
Hence the sweet reassurance of the above verse…the very same God who went before me then…the same God that fought to remove the shackles that had me entangled…the same God that carried me from a place of captivity and delivered me into this spacious place that I now stand…yet once again promises that He goes before me and it is He that is carrying me and it is only He that brings deeper healing …and once again I stand in awe of the faithfulness and lovingkindness of my Father.
Much of this trip for me I know has been about the journey of my heart. I don’t like messy. I like tidy, compartmentalized, controlled. To be completely honest, my heart right now feels like an absolute mess. I realize that in the deepest part of my heart I am scared to trust, scared to hope…I am fearful to let go of my sense of control because I don’t like to feel pain. But I also realize that the place that I know the Lord desires to take me and also the place that my heart so desperately longs for must be free of fear.
So here I am Lord. The closer You draw me to You, the clearer I see the brokenness all around me and the more pain my heart feels. Somehow I know that it is what You are using to show me that it is okay to trust and it is okay to hurt. Honestly though, sometimes it overwhelms me to the point that I just want to come Home and be with You. It makes me long for the day when there will be no more hurt. I don’t want to see people suffer. I don’t want to see this much death, destruction and poverty. I don’t want to see innocent children being abused, abandoned and neglected. But here I am nonetheless. I know that You are sovereign and Your plan is perfect, so I know that I am exactly where You desire for me to be. I ask Father that You help me. I desire to experience the full manifestation of the love and hope that only You can offer. I want to embrace Your freedom and love and mercy with reckless abandon. So I plead to You to use this brokenness that You have opened my eyes to, to help me better understand just how deep and pure Your love really is and then to create inside of me a deep passion to share that love and hope to this lost and broken world…so that one day when I do see You face to face I can say that I freely gave away what You so freely gave to me…that I did everything with the abiltiy that You entrusted to me to in some way help ease this pain…that through my hands Your love touched this awful brokenness…and through my love Your love would be magnified…because only You Lord can save…only You Lord can heal…only You Lord can offer hope. Thank you Jesus that Hope is always alive because of You.
Thank you Jesus…thank You that You made a way for us to get back home to our Father…where one day this heart of mine will be fully whole, because it will finally be Home.