I ran across this picture, just the other day. It was painted way before my life turned upside down and inside out. I thought my heart was full. As I look back from a different vantage point I am beginning to see that perhaps my life was full, but not my heart. Perhaps, I had lived with such a full life that it had kept me from living with a full heart. Maybe I equated a full life with a full heart.
I really believe Jesus longs for us to allow Him to fill us and then everything else is the overflow of that goodness. How easy it is for us to complicate that design. To build our self worth on what we do rather than who's we are. To fill our lives with good things, even God things but allow them to crowd out His voice and His perfect work for our lives.
I am not perfect (far from it) and sometimes my heart feels empty and hollow. The pains of life, the barrenness of a busy life drain my heart from full to empty. I alone hold responsibility for the condition of my heart. I hold unto the fact that empty is only how I feel, not the reality. That He never leaves me, but sometimes I become so filled with other things He is squeezed into a tight space in my heart instead of having free reign. The God of the universe fills my spirit and He alone is exactly what I long for. I may drown Him out sometimes with the busyness of life, sometimes I may even think I need something else to fill my heart such as friends, money, work or whatever (you could just fill in the blank with whatever your "filler" is). However, He is always there waiting for me to slow down and prioritize Him as the most important thing.
Looking back I can see that years of serving the body had created a heart that focused on loving His people sometimes more than loving the creator. Don't get me wrong, I always loved God but sometimes the people and the work became more important. It was never intentional, it was just a slow drifting. Like floating in the ocean and all the sudden realizing you are far from shore. We all sometimes need a reminder to be first full of Him and then we can pour out of that abundance unto those we love.
I am learning this lesson as one who has been stripped of a great deal of identity and now I am finding my true identity. I thought I had already figured it out, but alas I still am working it out. I am hopeful for what this new season brings and expectant for the future. My joy isn't tethered to who likes me, how well I do at my job or even a man. That's right I said it, I don't need a man. Whaaaat, some of my old time friends are gasping and surprised by this, and to be honest I vacillate around this issue. I always settle back into this truth, I need a heart full of Jesus nothing else will fit that deep need. Anything I use to try to fill that, is just a prop for the real thing.
So today on this journey, I am finding my way to back to joy and it comes from having my heart full of Jesus. Why do I seem to forget this intermittently in my life? Just human I suppose.
Love to all my human friends, thanks for celebrating who I am and who I am becoming. One day, we won't be human we will be heavenly and won't that be awesome!!
- April 18, 2016
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