Out From the Emptiness (What He Has Done) ; Filled & Free Day 7

Sunday, October 4, 2015

I lay in bed one afternoon, staring at the subtle imperfections of the royal-purple ceiling. A careful hand must have slightly shook, because paint curved over the edge onto the wrong wall

I could not shake the thought of how similar my efforts were to create a Christ-centered life: trying to reflect His beauty, trying to be, to give, and to do enough to fill my time, and hoping to one day hear the words, “Well done, My good and faithful servant” – but in the over-scrutiny, my hand often slips and the paintbrush misses the mark. I am not perfect, I do not have it all together, I cannot do everything or all the things others can. I have hurt people, I have been hurt, I have burned bridges and have tried (without success) to keep others from crumbling down.

In moments like these, all I feel is mess. Mistake. Hurt. Confusion. Doubt. Regret. Shame. All sorts of ugly, in all its forms, speaking to all the parts of my life.

"God, what are You doing? When I asked You to raise me up in a passion for You, I did not expect to be thrown into the lowest, darkest and most uncertain season of my life."

I would be lying to you if I said I have not asked God if He was still there, if He still wanted to use me and if He still loved me. To be honest, when God asks me if I trust Him, and then takes away all comfort and the things I knew and held onto dearly, my natural tendency is to wonder what went wrong.

"Were you not the center of my life? Where did I slip up? What do I do now?"

Storms and situations brewed. Waves crashed on and I was in over my head, drowning and trying to find air, a hand, anything to hold. 

There came a time when questions and movement turned into silence and stillness; I finally allowed God whisper to my broken spirit, “Trust Me. Trust Me. Trust Me. I got you, my dearly sought-after child. I have gone before you – I have paved your path. I am the Way, the Truth and the Life. You can be completely satisfied in Me alone. Let Me show you just how cherished you are right now in all your mess and emptiness.

That is when something inside me shifted – God is a God who actually wants me. Completely. Untethered, raw, shell-of-a-person, utterly humanhave-nothing-to-offer, me.Could He be wooing my weary spirit deeper into the waves of His intimacy? Maybe this ocean was not meant to drown me, but to fill my lungs and saturate every breath with Him, and Him alone. Could He really bend all the way down from heaven and caress this rock-bottom heart of mine?

While I was filled to the brim with lies of unworthiness and insecurity, God got my attention with His Love – and all the lovely words He spoke of in His Word, all the words I tell others but somehow cannot manage to believe them for myself – He grabbed me by the shoulders and showed me they are all true.

I have not reached the end of this mountain-journey, but I can tell you I am absolutely, indefinitely head over heels with our Creator and His fierce, truest love.

I finally believe this: He deeply desires, every day and every moment, to draw me closer to His heartbeat. He is redefining our relationship, adding stronger threads to our tapestry. Our story together is a folding and unfolding of a glorious undoing and renewing.

I believe without a doubt when I whispered that prayer one November morning, hungry for a new depth of closeness with God, He listened. At my lowest and most broken, I saw just how far His reach is, just how faithful He is to His promises, and just how close He has always been. 

Where can I go from your Spirit?
    Where can I flee from your presence?
If I go up to the heavens, you are there;
    if I make my bed in the depths, you are there.
If I rise on the wings of the dawn,
    if I settle on the far side of the sea,
even there your hand will guide me,
    your right hand will hold me fast.
-Psalm 139:7-10

I need nothing else than to empty myself and pour my entire self out like water before Him. I believe God wants nothing less than our full, raw selves -- all the mess, the ugly, the hurt, the fear, the sin… strip them off your identity while you run into the ocean of Grace.

I will forever need the daily reminder that when we give Him control over our lives in all things – so much so you cannot even see the path ahead of you– He will be faithful and He is good. We may not know how, but He is doing a great and mighty work (Philippians 1:6). Instead of gripping onto my control-freak tendencies, I cling onto His words of truth and speak them over my life— He would not allow pain without something new to be born (Isaiah 66:9).

Dear one, all you have to do is surrender. Open your hands. He has so much for you.
He is not here to redecorate some of the outdated parts of your heart and renovate the rest later, no. He is making you a completely new creation (Rev. 21:5). Our God does not pour new wine into old wineskins (Matthew 9:16-17). 

The old is gone and passed away, tired sojourner.

The pressure is off. You do not need to meet a criteria, a check-list or hit a “good enough” mark. You can rest in His sweet presence. You are enough right here, right now. You do not have to earn your stripes because by His stripes we are healed, redeemed and set free (Isaiah 53:5).

These pangs of pain are Him stretching your heart, your capacity to love, and your understanding of who He is and just how much He adores you. It will boggle your mind just how holy our God is, and how unworthy we are of such attention – but He will never stop pursuing you.

And whether He changes the circumstances or changes you – He is doing a holy miracle. From glory to glory.

Did you catch that? You are not chained. You are not bound to who you were, to who hurt you or what happened. You are His beloved – this is your identityGod does not put asterisks in the Bible. When He says He works all things for the better of those who love Him – your circumstance is not the exception.

He is here. Wherever you are, however far you have run or however long you have hid in your guilt – He is right here. Closer than your breath and skin. Pour yourself out; He will not leave you dry.

Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. -2 Corinthians 3:17 

He holds you with unfailing tenderness. Dear heart, you have been filled with the Holy Spirit, and you can dwell in His constant, fulfilling and overflowing yoke of delight. 

Will you invite Him into every moment you live?

The one so small it usually goes unnoticed, the one smeared with a bright red sting, the one so dark you are afraid to breathe, the one with joy twirling you around all sorts of whimsy, the one bursting at the seams with laughter because of His unending peace.

Invite Him into each moment, precious daughter, and He will saturate your entire life; You will begin to see Him in everything, in everyone.

It seems as though we hope for Him to accept our invitation to join us in the mundane, but really, we are actually accepting His invitation. This act, this deliberate choosing of placing Him over our fears, our insecurities, our worldly cares, our successes, our talents and dreams gives Him the opportunity to do Kingdom-shaking work He so desires to do in us; to completely flip us inside out, upside down; to love and be loved with a capacity of affection and devotion we never fathomed we were capable of.

He is extending an arm, waiting to grab you by the hand and take you on a lifelong adventure.

Be completely empty. Be fulfilled in Him alone. He is for you. Freedom is yours.

About the Author

Christine Vezarov≫ ≫People. Jesus. Stories. Singing. Words. And don't forget avocado-banana smoothies -- they're all her favourites. Christine is a 20 year old journalism student who falls in love with small, everyday moments and can't help but seek to leave and find pieces of God's beauty-heart in whatever she does and wherever she goes. (Psalm 33:5). On quiet days, you'll find her with paintbrush in hand, book in the other and tea brewing in a kettle nearby. Christine believes in joy and daily adventure: life is best lived celebrating all little things -- with your tribe by your side. Her wander-heart hope is to tell people's stories from all over the world and use her words to encourage and build others up in Christ. You can follow her life in pictures here and her journey through words here.


Copyright © Daughter of Delight
Made with Love by The Dutch Lady Designs