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I Decided to Listen

As I remember today what God told me almost of a year ago... That if I was going to tell stories, I was going to have to tell "the whole story..." I was reminded that there was more to build upon from my last blog post... Because, of course, the story wasn’t finished, the theme hadn’t been shut up, closed off, finished or abandoned…

When reflecting on the weeks that have past since I shared the truth that was hurting me so bad, I realized I had moved from one state to another... Been transferred from the operating table, to the out-patient room, from my hospital bed, being rolled out to the curb, and finally waking up in the familiar arms of safety and refuge...

 

And I am grateful to say that on the other side of obedience I have found a breakthrough... a blessing... a holy rest and peace in the God that honors His children as they follow that still, soft voice built upon love, courage, faith and deep trust.

 

Just hours before I shared my aches and pains with the world just shy of a month ago... I had decided to give up, to let go of the girls as I entered into the last month with them. I told the staff that I was going to step away from my role, that they just simply couldn’t rely on me to take care of these girls anymore because running a house filled with individuals both small and big that needed so much attention, care, time and energy was breaking me and all that I had worked for seemed to be crumbling before my sight…

 

I went into a two day darkness. A time where I stepped as far away from relationships as I could. A time when I felt a weight. The weight of a calling that I had dropped but was now hovering over and still being thrust upon me.

 

These moments of laying on the floor, of crying, of speaking out words that weren’t my own because I just didn’t have anymore left…

 

I was desperate to know what to do. I wanted a different answer… But every time I'd enter in, back into His presence, asking the same question... His words never changed…

 

“Just keep loving.”

 

But HOW?

 

How was I supposed to?! I kept going back to the saying... “hurt people hurt people.”

 

I AM A HURTING PERSON!” I told Him… How could I be of any help to anyone right now?

 

But it didn’t seem to matter to the Lord.

 

And the girls just kept coming to my door in the midst of it all. They would knock and knock and knock and I just couldn’t let them in. I didn’t want them to see my face. The thought of an interaction with them sent me down-spiraling into anxiety.  

 

They were curious, preoccupied, some told me they were worried for me, one said she had been praying and praying that I would just come out of my room… That she didn’t understand what could have happened to me, why I wasn’t eating, how I could stand to be in there for so long.  

 

They started shoving cards under my door. Drawing me pictures. Calling my name...

 

I just kept hearing my name while I was shut up by myself, and I knew that the Lord was using those voices to draw me back into the purpose He had waiting for me as I chose to finally enter back in and open the door…

It was His persistence that enabled my obedience.

His kindess that allowed me to reflect a love that always gives, never takes, and throws out expectations.

His will that pushed through any resistance to His purposes that I had tried to let overcome saying yes to Him again.

And when my hand finally reached to turn the door knob... I knew I needed to make a decision...

So I told God that I was going to listen to Him.

 

I told Him that the voices speaking against the very acts of love that He was inspiring me to walk in would be silenced. I was done listening to them, whether or not they came from the mouths of people I love. I finally understood that God wasn’t done with me yet, and He was going to make a way in my relationships during these final days.

 

And I am here to tell you.

 

I have made it to the other side of obedience.

And there is assurance and security that comes from the heavens themselves.

There is encouragement from the Holy Spirit that just fuels and fills you in your weakest moments.

There is a joy that radiates in you and from you, that changes the room when you walk in and when you open your mouth to speak LIFE over what appears to be dead.

 

God has yet again showed me that HE is responsible for the growth, but that there is clear responsibility that He has welcomed me into as these girls are transformed day by day.

 

The other side of obedience means that there is ALWAYS enough love to go around.

 

And as I hold my girls in my arms, as I kiss them on their brown cheeks, as I help them cut up their meat during dinner time and wrap them up tight in their towel after their bath….

and when I drive them to school down our wild streets, and when I brush their hair, teach them how to do chores, and run with them holding their hand, pushing them because I know they can do it… Telling them I’m proud of them and that they can do so much more than they ever think they could do right now… That God made them with potential and drive and passions and abilities… 

And when they smile at me like they actually BELIEVE what I’m saying…

That in that moment they actually BELIEVE it about themselves…

 

God is winning.

 

And He’s letting me have a taste of His sweet victory. He’s letting me feel what a mother feels when they see their child growing in character, in understanding, in acceptance, in love.

When sweet submission is mixed with wisdom and training, my heart overflows because God’s order is being enacted in their little lives. To see them growing in their ability to trust, to receive counsel, to rely on the ones God has given them to lead and guide their lives and make the decisions that they simply aren't ready nor able to make themselves. 

 

And when I look at the girls that are still resisting. The ones that have rebellion pumping through their veins, that have a misshapen, mistaken idea of freedom, that can’t see themselves as HIS daughter quite yet… The Spirit speaks to me…

“The process is painful…”

And as tears roll down my face and grieve over their lives and their pasts and their present…

He finishes His sentence…

“…But so very worth it.”

 

And again God is speaking the familiar to me but I receive it with newness.

Newness that renews a hope abandoned.

Newness that awakens a love that covers a multitude of sins.

 

Because God has shown me that there isn’t a formula… We don’t need to use big words, or even many at all, to articulate what He has called us to here on earth. Yes, we all have our little pockets of influence, our territories, our gifts and anointings and vocations…

 

But if LOVE isn’t intertwined, woven, covering and fueling that which we know to be our purpose and passion…

We will never make it to the other side.

And that's where you really discover what you were made to do.

When you begin to listen to the one that holds the earth in hands.

To obey the voice that only speaks that which will always be. 

 

And it can't be a love that has its origin within man... The one that has an expectation to be paid back, that gives until convenience runs out or is offended when neglected or turned against... 

No... Not that kind of love that has a beginning and an end...

 

Because this love is a person...

NO...!

Wait....!

More than a person...

He's the one that grows the fruit below ground level so that it won't be picked prematurely...

The one that leads us into the harvest...

The one that churns and turns, mixes and stirs, shakes and polishes... The one that transforms our labor into eternal promise, that sows in faithfulness and reaps in thanksgiving, the one's who's footprints will never be erased, and our greatest company when we say yes to the journey He lays before us and asks that we would just simply trust Him. 

 

That is a love worth living in and giving everything for. Jesus Christ. The author and perfecter of our faith. And again He allows me to put into writing that which He is speaking into existence through this earthen vessel of mine. He is the one that has told me without a doubt, His love will be that which conquers, lives behind the purpose of every muscle moved for the good of His Kingdom. And that I must keep listening, and saying yes.