We are so good at putting ourselves and others in boxes. We don’t allow for people to be. Just be. We have an incessant need to figure out which box we fit best in and can’t deal with it when we meet people we can’t put in a box.
I have just completed walking through the 30-day devotional ‘Dreaming’ which was released in March of this year. Following the completion of the ‘Dare to Ask’ book, I was led on this crazy adventure of God, of not only making the music that the book is about, but also on a journey of understanding that this journey of ‘Daring to Ask’ is comprised of a journey within itself.
I'm spending a lot of time writing at the moment, about being 'awakened'. It's a journey many of us have been through, some of us are in the middle of, and some long for. Some don't even know this journey is available to them! Being 'awakened' is the process of 'waking up' spiritually, to who we are, what our purpose is, and how God wants to partner with us.
It's an involuntary action that we do whether we're awake or asleep, thinking about it, or not, resting or running, happy or sad. We all breathe. Sometimes we are more aware of our breathing patterns than at other times. We may try breathing exercises or be intentional about slowing our breathing down for health reasons, but we all go through a large proportion of the day without thinking about our breathing.
What about the breath of God? What effect does that have on my life?
It occurred to me recently how so many of us are essentially sleepwalking.
We go through life, without really participating in it.
We're sat at the game and watching it unfold before our eyes, without ever rolling the dice. We walk through the garden without really ever stopping to see what is surrounding us, and we miss the scent of the flowers, and the feel of the wind on our faces.
Being overcome by something doesn't usually have positive connotations. It implies succumbing to something, giving in to something that is too strong for us to withstand. It's not something that comes with choice, it's something that overpowers us and that goes against our will.
This is a picture painted with the colour of fear, and doesn't appeal to even the strongest of us.
What if that is exactly what needs to happen?
I hate cheesy New Years blog posts that try to convince you that the passing of a new day will somehow magically cause a reset in our lives, and that we get to start again come 00:01 on January 1st.
So this won't be one.
We don't get to hit reset. We have to live with all that went down in the previous year, and although we may have renewed hope that the next year will be better, there is no guarantee of this, and we don't always know how to make that happen.
Recently I've been thinking a lot about how we have to walk through lessons and seasons more than once. It's a shame we don't learn all we need to learn the first time we encounter a lesson. Like children, it seems that we need constant reminders and experiences that help us re-learn the lessons He needs us to learn.
"Grace aboundsIn waves so strongI'm all out at seaI'm right where I want to beGrace aboundsEngulfing me all aroundI'm all out at seaRight where I want to beUntil you've done all you need inJust me and You..In your great rescue. " Life is an ocean. It's full of twists and turns, currents pulling you in directions you didn't know existed, it can get rough in an instant, but can also be so beautiful and refreshing at times too. I don't believe there has ever been a person who hasn't experienced the choppy, tumultuous times life can throw at us, even the most sheltered and luxurious of lives have these times. It's not always circumstantial, it's out inner being that can encounter these waves crashing in, and that is universal.Sometimes we're ready and waiting for these waves, because we know we're walking through a storm , we saw it coming, it started with a light drizzle, the winds picked up, and we were ready, with our coats, boots, umbrellas, and we're heading as quickly as we can to get 'out'! Although we may not anticipate every wave, we are almost prepared for dealing with them because we know, we're living in a storm.Other times we're happily enjoying a quiet, peaceful picnic for the soul, and in an instant we are being pounded with the lashing rain's of a storm that arrived with no warning. We're not ready, we're left outside in our summer clothes getting soaked to the bone! Our picnic is ruined, our food has turned to a soggy mess which is no longer appetising or satisfying. The rain stings our skin, and we can't see anything clearly, so we just sit there, getting drenched by the rain, hoping it'll pass quickly so we can get back to life!But what if God had a plan in the suddenness of the storm? What if he meant to 'catch you unawares'? What if he didn't want that food to satisfy you anymore? What if he has things he wants to do in you during the storm? What if he wants you to stop fighting the tides, and give all control to his currents. Let Him carry you. Even if that means being all out at sea, with seemingly no hope, and no direction. Would you let him? Probably not!God knows that he gets a lot less done in us when we're ready, and prepared to fix all the things which are going 'wrong' around us. We don't look to see if these circumstances are God's way of doing a work in us, we just get on and fix it. I believe that's why some storms come 'suddenly' and out of the blue. Because in His mercy - he saves us from ourselves, from our incessant need to fix everything and find the easy way out.What if we're supposed to embrace the storm, and all it brings, and trust that He's good. He's always good. His grace abounds, engulfs us, surrounds us, it carries us in His currents to the places He wants us to be. If we stop fighting it, we might discover that we have been transformed, washed clean, renewed, restored and directed in ways we never could have accomplished for ourselves.What if God isn't as interested in saving us from our circumstances, as He is in saving us from ourselves? What if the circumstances are his tools?What if God is leading us right into the eye of the storm, and being in the storm with Him, IS His great rescue plan?