I was searching for a document on my computer today and I came across a journal entry of mine from January 2015. I honestly don’t remember why it was on my computer at work since I typically only journal in a notebook but this I know…God knew I needed to read these words today. He knew I needed to be reminded of what HE has done in my life and how He has so beautifully answered petition after petition that I have laid at His feet. Those petitions that were raw cries from a shattered heart. He wanted to whisper to this tender heart that even on the days that I fail and life is a little messy, He will meet me right where I am.
As I began to read those words I had written over three years ago, it was as if I could feel the pain that was real the day I had transferred them from my heart into words on the screen. But as I continued to read I was overwhelmed with joy as I realized all the answers God has provided since that day. Do you find when you stop and reflect on what God has done in your life and brought you through that it brings you to your knees? As we trace back over the history of His faithfulness in our lives it can have the power to deepen our faith and fuel our courage to keep living out our lives knowing He is a God who never fails. When I stop and soak in all that He is and all that He has done in my life, it is impossible to contain it…I am in awe that God has brought me up out of that pit I was in and restored me in a way that only He can. I am humbled that the God of the universe will use our lives as evidence that He does trade our mourning for joy. He does restore the brokenhearted. He is a keeper of His word. He will meet our every need. I know that God is still working on and in this far from perfect “girl’s” life but I am His and He is mine and in that I will abide! May I never forget that He is enough, even if …
My journal entry from January 7, 2015:
The reason I chose “Abide” to be my word for 2015 is because for these past few years my life has been anything but calm. I could not use words like peaceful, restful, tranquil or serene. And as I began my search for ‘My Word” I had many that tiptoed through my mind but when I started to dig a little deeper into the meaning of abide, I could feel a calm in my soul. I felt comfort there. I could see myself engulfed in the arms of my Savior. Protected. Safe. Unrushed. Restored. This was a word that was not about the “doing” but about “being”. I believe that it is there in the “being” that God will restore me from years on the battlefield. We had been there on the front line, fighting for my daughter as addiction tried to take her from us. And yet while we were still on that battlefield another enemy would invade our home. An enemy that goes by the name of ALS, would be a battle that would change my family forever. I am weary from this battle. I am lonely after this battle. There are now pieces of me that are missing. But as I write these words I know that the victory is ours and it is because of The One I call Savior that I know, that I know, that I know, as I abide in Him, He will be the source from which my healing comes…
“I am the true vine, and my Father is the vinedresser. 2 Every branch in me that does not bear fruit he takes away, and every branch that does bear fruit he prunes, that it may bear more fruit. 3 Already you are clean because of the word that I have spoken to you. 4 Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me. 5 I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing. 6 If anyone does not abide in me he is thrown away like a branch and withers; and the branches are gathered, thrown into the fire, and burned. 7 If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. 8 By this my Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit and so prove to be my disciples. 9 As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Abide in my love. 10 If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commandments and abide in his love. 11 These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full. John 15: 1-11 (ESV)
As I meditate on these words today, I find that they are weaving their way into my thoughts. Into my heart. Into my imagination in a way they have not before. I close my eyes and I can see a beautiful, strong vine. I see this vine with strong branches that extend from it. I realize that the branches of a vine can only bear fruit when it is completely attached and absorbing all of the life giving nutrients needed from the vine for this process to happen. “As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it ABIDES in the vine….WOW!
My precious heavenly Father, I come humbly before you today, with out stretched arms. My desire is to abide in You. To abide in Your love. To abide in Your Word. To be in that place where I can hear Your voice. Lord, may I take every word that You speak into my heart and allow it to connect my heart to Yours. I pray that I will be a branch that will bear Your fruit. For I know that the branch is only an extension of The Vine and that without The Vine a branch can do nothing. I choose You Lord. I choose to abide in You and as I do, the empty places deep in my soul are being filled once again…those places that You designed to be filled by You and You alone and for that I am grateful! Amen