In my last post I shared the image I’ve been dwelling on about the Lord’s role in suffering. I am so grateful to the Lord for it. The image of the Lord holding back that wave of suffering and evil has lifted me over the impasse I was living in and just in the nick of time.
It was as if I had smacked headlong into a spiritual obstacle and I was stuck. I have met the obstacle, “suffering” before in my life, obviously. God’s Word tells me I will meet it many, many times while I live here on earth, so I wasn’t angry. I didn’t feel God had broken any promises or betrayed Himself, but I did feel frozen. The faith to press on was not there. The obstacle was covered in guns and children and cancer and it was towering high above me and mocking me.
And God, who knows me – who knows I think, process, and express in pictures – gave me a picture. In a split second I was over the wall and moving again, toward and with the Lord.
I’ve felt insecure about calling it “from God” because I know how vulnerable we all are to calling our own desires, thoughts, and self-talk – “from God.” I’m hugely skeptical. At the same time, God has given me 2 or 3 other pictures over the course of my life that have deeply ministered to me. (Wanna hear the one about the chain-male or the cherry picker??)
Within the larger scope of ministry and discipleship I want to affirm ways the Lord speaks to us and agree with Him as He’s ministering to women I know. I also want to help women discern when it really isn’t God speaking at all – which I think happens too.
So, I’m reading the Word with these thoughts in mind and being curious with friends about how God communicates with them. It’s fascinating to me (probably a lot of my INFJ coming out here) how differently we are all wired and how that affects our perceptions of everything – including the Lord, and possibly including how He relates with us.
It also fascinates me how these streams of thought and prayer can coexist with Downton Abbey, my new hobby – making American Girl Doll clothes for my youngest, and my growing adoration for Laughing Cow Cheese. To me, this is God’s grace and gift – the ability to really live here on this earth and yet move toward a completely other existence all at once.