Aaron and I watched a movie this evening. Near the end, the main character spoke to a group of men in prison. He himself was wearing a prison uniform and he was speaking from a place of acceptance and restoration. In this unlikely place, he was most thankful for one thing. In fact, I spoke the “line” with him…
In this place, I found freedom.
And the movie ended. And it’s late. And I decide to check my email one more time. And I notice a message I received on facebook. And Aaron rounds the corner of the kitchen and asks me to read a message HE has received on email. And we share. And the tears begin to flow. Because sometimes in life there are no words, just emotion.
And ironically, just moments before, I simply felt compelled to write. Not out of capability, but of humility. Not out of effort, but out of obedience. Not from an “others” focus, but an upward focus. Sometimes the Lord simply takes my breath away. He blesses and confirms His unconditional love for me in ways that blow my mind. And I notice I’m shaking my head, in both wonder and awe as to how He loves me in spite of me. And maybe I will never truly know why, but this I do:
His purpose prevails. – Proverbs 19:21 (I can’t mess it up).
His will be done. – Matthew 6:10 (I can choose to join Him in this.)
Our freedom has been proclaimed. – Isaiah 61:1 (I no longer need to bind myself)
Where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. – 2 Corinthians 3:17 (Join in with the Spirit).
It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. – Galatians 5:1 (Can I simply receive this?)
In him and through faith in him we may approach God with freedom and confidence. – Ephesians 3:12
Then you will know the truth (Jesus Christ), and the truth will set you free.” – John 8:32
And I realized that this in no longer an elusive concept for me. This is one that I have experienced and continue to live. Wednesday night a group of ladies met here in our home. Just a few short weeks ago I simply said yes to God. I knew He had some sort of plan, but my soul was of the notion to simply move forward in this obedience and watch Him work. It was simple. I took inventory of my stress-level… just peace. And I thought that was cool.
And the evening took on a very different meaning for me. An opening statement was offered, and one at a time, I listened to the hearts of 16 women, only 4 of which I had spoken to prior to that evening. And I. was. floored. These women are solid. These women made some real statements in a room full of strangers, some even commenting on this being a step very far out of their comfort zones. And this had NOTHING to do with me, and EVERYTHING to do with the Spirit who led them here. And it didn’t matter that I thought my “facilitating” was flawed and bumbled. And it didn’t matter that my mind was blank when it was my turn to pray. And it didn’t matter that the floor had dog hairs that didn’t get swept up. It had everything to do with stepping into the peace that I’m not the One with answers, but I do know the One who offers truth in promises, peace despite our circumstances, and joy in the morning.
And I listened to these women, these sisters who desire more of Christ, who recognize their current stress, and who desire to press into His word, and I had nothing to say but thank you. Thank you for risking. Thank you for giving the gift of honesty to others so that they, in turn, could be honest out loud with themselves. Thank you for displaying confidence in approaching His throne of grace. Thank you for connecting, for such a time as this, to encourage one another, to lift weary arms, and to speak truth into our souls. Yes, blessings do come to those who choose to obey. Gratitude follows to those who obey with no expectations.
And even more, hearts continue to walk into His freedom…