Once again, I had a vision shaped in my mind for what this next post might be about. You see, I had chosen this verse, and worked on its accompanying graphic early on in this #Write31Days Challenge. And I had let my mind drift . . .
Maybe this verse means that you will answer me with an incredible healing, God? Maybe I won't have to deal with these multiple chronic illnesses any longer. . .
Oh, but God, our Savior, has so much more in mind when HE is shaping the Vision for us.
I have been blessed reading so many different words of bloggers who are joining in this challenge to #Write31Days: many different topics, and many different ways to bring encouragement with their words. But it seemed to me that yesterday's theme in several posts ran a little too parallel to just be a coincidence.
God is at work behind the scenes where we cannot see,
God is in the dark times with us,
God is the potter, and He shapes us beyond what we can see,
and then this last post over at "LisaNotes" on Doubt,
struck something very deep in my heart.
Almost 20 years ago, as I mentioned in some of my earlier postings, my family traveled to churches with Biblical Dramas that we portrayed. And one of the main characters was the Apostle Thomas: Doubting Thomas.
My husband portrayed Thomas, and I was the "voice in the dark" closing out the drama with a series of personal questions:
"So, what is YOUR point of doubting?" I would speak softly to those who had been part of the audience.
Except that, last night, as I read Lisa's blog, I heard Jesus asking me that same question.
And I knew that He was putting His finger on my own personal doubting in this place of illness.
As I have listened and shared with so many others who are also on this Chronic Illness path, there is one question that seems to come up over and over again:
"What am I doing wrong?"
or, one with a similar punch,
"What test did I fail that brought me here?"
It is so easy to fall into the doubting track. After all, this path of illness is not where we would choose to be, if left to our own devices. The enemy of our soul takes delight in choking our faith with doubts about the goodness of God.
Maybe God doesn't WANT to see me well.
Maybe God is punishing me for the things I brought upon myself.
Maybe God is telling me I just have to try HARDER and pray more VEHEMENTLY and shout more LOUDLY!
But I don't see Jesus meeting Thomas with those kinds of thoughts. No, He gently came, and met Thomas in the very place of His doubting.
"See, my hands, and place your hand in the hole in my side," he spoke to Thomas.
It's no use trying to hide our doubt away, Jesus sees the depth of what our soul is feeling. He spoke the very words that Thomas had sputtered to his friends, to show us that He is already dwelling there, in the deep of our heart, where we are holding onto the doubts. And HE wants to come near to us.
Listen to the rest of the passage from that graphic above:
Psalm 65:4-5 (NIV) 4 Blessed are those you choose and bring near to live in your courts! We are filled with the good things of your house, of your holy temple. 5 You answer us with awesome and righteous deeds, God our Savior, the hope of all the ends of the earth and of the farthest seas,
Jesus is at the center of our being, bringing us near to HIS heart and HIS dwelling courts. He wants to meet us, where our feet feel singed from the fires all around, and show us that HE IS OUR ONLY HOPE.
Those awesome and righteous deeds that He answers us with?
HE IS ALREADY FILLING US WITH THEM, GIVING US GLIMPSES OF HIS HOLY TEMPLE, IF WE WILL ONLY OPEN OUR EYES AND LET HIM SHOW US . . .
in the very places where we may be doubting Him today.
God may still have that miracle of an incredible healing in mind for me.
Perhaps He will choose to have me perservere through the night for a little longer.
Either way, my HOPE rests secure in HIM, because He is answering me with Awesome and righteous deeds, right here, as He brings me into HIS dwelling place.
Are you on a journey filled with doubt? Know that you are not alone, and there is no shame in bringing your questions to Him. Let Him answer you and bring you close to His Courts today.
This is Day 7 in the #Write31Days Challenge for my
#31Days of Listening with Chronic Illness.
I am so blessed that you are journeying with me!