Searching for Storms.
Because I am inclined to compare everything to a form of water lately -
Last year felt as if I were in the middle of the ocean during a hurricane: Exposed. Threatened. Desperate.
This year feels more like wading in the still waters of the shoreline. Eyes closed. Soft Breeze. The gentle water wading over me. Still.
To love God and listen intently for His voice, His direction in a time of desperation is SO VERY DIFFERENT than loving and listening to God in the stillness.
I am ok with this, I see so much value in both places. But all week I have struggle with my own restlessness in these calm, still waters. Knowing the deep and intimate growth that I experienced in last seasons' storms - I almost gravitate towards finding a storm and sailing right into it. Crazy. I feel insane. I do not wish for any trouble - But I crave intimacy with God. I want to keep growing. I don't want to be still.
This week I was convicted by this restlessness and my taking this part of my journey for granted. Wishing it away. As I journaled, I wrote the following prayer:
God, I feel the Holy Spirit urging me to AWAKE and EXPERIENCE YOU in the calm. This is new territory for me, Lord. I don't know that I have ever desperately pursued a relationship with you in the "steady" seasons of life. First, please forgive me for that, but also teach me. Show me what not to miss. Expand my understanding of You here, as you did previously in the storm, and as I journeyed out of it.
I still have current obstacles in my life and in our family. Life is not perfect by any means. Marriages struggle. Parenting is a challenge. And we are HUMAN, so that has a plethora of obstacles, all its own. BUT I wake up day after day - with Peace (yet restless).
My son's memory verse this week is such a reminder of leaning on God. In discussing it with him this week, I see this verse is very much speaking to me as well. Psalm 73:1 says "my heart and my flesh may fail me..." We, left on our own, face one destination - Failure. We may see successes along the way - but ultimately we face a road we are left defeated. Exhausted. Lost. The end of that verse says "...BUT - God is the strength of my heart. My portion Forever."
God is the source of my strength in the Calm, just as He is the source of my strength in the Storm.
We need him both places. We can't journey either successfully on our own. Maybe that is it. Maybe I am nervous that it will be easier to feel self reliant when things are "still." Maybe I am fearful of my own flesh - my inclination to be independent. But as I admit that to myself, and to you, I find myself leaning on Him.
No matter if you are in a place of desperation or stillness, God is present. God is intentional. God is loving you in that place. They are both so different, but each so important. Both require your response - to lean in to Him.
Journey with me as I blog through this season. I hope you are encouraged, because I know He intends to answer that prayer. I trust that God would not give me a desire to AWAKE and EXPERIENCE HIM here - and not intend to respond.