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I will rise… – 2017-11-03

Somewhere along the way, our steps have become slow and heavy. How long has it been since my heart remembered how to laugh? Oh yeah, Saturday… we went to a wedding of a precious friend, and the joy of this blessing filled my soul… God’s blessing, a tear in the clouds to reveal the rainbow that promises life resumes after the storm. She said, “we had fun with the wedding entrance…” “yes, you did… and as my heart began to dance, I thought, “when has anyone ever said, ‘I wish I’d laughed less?'”

This morning, I told Mike, I need to laugh, I need to grab hold of the Joy of the Lord and saturate myself in it.
I cannot live in fear of the “what ifs”
I cannot live in negativity
I cannot live in sorrow
I cannot live in the coulda woulda shoulda world
I cannot focus or pour my remaining resources into negative relationships, events or drama
Those are things I cannot fix, and living there is sapping my strength and my joy!

Today I want to stamp my feet in the mud and scream into the storm that I will NOT be overcome because my God is good, and His promises are true. It would be easier if there was rain, but there is not. The warm weather and sun try to comoflauge the storm and even as I resolve to hold on to joy, another round of negativity threatens to engulf my attempts to breathe, to live, to laugh again. At these times, I must first take captive those thoughts that want to bring the worst kind of storm to my day and I must cut off those things/people who are trying to hold my face into the mud. Today, I resolve to breathe… to regain strength until I can do more than just breathe.

I must, must, must grab hold of God’s promise and let His joy fill my heart again and teach me to laugh again. I must move on… God is not just the God who is faithful in our trials, God is GOOD, God is joy, God is hope and I need to grab a hold of a double helping of Psalm 34:8 “Oh taste and see that the Lord is good.”

JOY is in the Bible 211 times… The Lord is GOOD, in ways I cannot begin to comprehend. When I am stronger, I can reach out to help others who are drowning without being crushed, suffocated. But that day is not today… this morning, as I switched from coffee to tea, I knew I needed a big cup of “hope” and I am hanging on tight to the cup with that very verse, “Hope is a strong and trustworthy anchor for our souls.” Heb 6:19

This victory will be the Lord’s, we WILL laugh again… our hearts, our hands, our feet will live the days of joy again, but for now, I need to surround myself with those reminders and people who are supportive, hearing, understanding, and healing… I am so, so, so very grateful for those precious “safe people” in my life with whom I can trust my heart.

Physical storms can be fierce, but magnificent. Personal/life storms can be draining and exhausting. At least with a physical storm I can see and appreciate the storm… emotional storms are a black hole – nothing to see, nothing to push against, just an emptiness that that sucks everything around into it’s vortex. But this storm too, shall pass, it’s days are written and it’s strength is waining.

The season of change is in the air… I am SO VERY READY! As golden and red leaves fall and cover the ground, the scars of the parched days of summer, the lands ravaged by fire will fade. I love winter and spring, when God covers the earth with sparkling white, with cleansing rain. Even while life is covered with blankets of leaves and snow, and the challenges each contains; while raw branches, fresh from pruning look nearly dead; new growth begins from the roots until it can at last pop it’s head out and triumphantly announce, “spring is here! we have weathered the storm!”

Today, it looks as though signs of life are fading, but I see life recharging for another glorious season. I see hope, I see joy, I see promise… I see Jesus. He has not left my side for even a moment, and it is His presence that has sheltered me from the ferocity of the storm. As the leaves dance on the ground, my spirit joins them in their dance, in their flight. The songs our hearts sing for this season are different from the last, because we are different.

Like the hurricane survivors, I will survive, gather breath, let God renew my strength, and rise again – Not today, for healing takes time, but in due season. I will seek joy, and I will find it, because God’s promises are true.