As my body woke up from a night of slumber, so did the constant fear that rolled over and over in my stomach. I had recently completed a three minute speaker promo video and I had shared it with my family and friends, including a lot of pastors and ministry leaders. I even shared it on Facebook. I was unsure how people would receive it. I felt vulnerable. Exposed.
I was terrified of being rejected.
God, thank you for loving me in my mess.
In my beautiful broken fragile humanness, You love me.
I stared at the window, longing to go outside. I could see the birds flitting from tree limbs to the bird feeders. I could hear the sweet song of the cardinal at the top of the river birch tree. I could see the water flowing in the fountains, the windchimes swaying, and the flowers blooming in my whimsical cottage garden.
And I was stuck inside. I felt like I was the “princess in the tower,” locked in the upstairs bedroom and not allowed to leave. (more…)
Tears escape my eyes while worship takes place all around me in the church building. No one notices me down here on the floor, but God does. Down on my knees, face towards the floor, I cry out to the Lord. “Oh God, change me,” I pray with passion. “Change me so that You can use me. ”
When I peer into my sinful, human heart, I see so many things that I wish weren’t there. Anger over the actions of people. Frustration when things don’t go my way. Disappointment when my plans were stymied. And it gets worse. Round and round in my brain swirl hateful words that I long to say. I want to reject those who reject me and I want to hurt those who have hurt me. I demand justice for wrongs that I have suffered.
One of my blog readers, who is also my neighbor, recently had back surgery. The outpatient surgery was scheduled for a Friday afternoon. The day before the surgery, I was texting with her to let her know that I was praying for her. I thought it would be nice if I made her some chicken noodle soup for when she got home from her surgery.
But there was a problem. I had no celery.