Let’s all take a deep breathe together. Aaaahhhhh. It’s Friday.
The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me,
because the Lord has anointed me…
If you’re like me, the week has been full of work and busyness and stress and worry and laughter and frustrations and you’re tired. Weary. We’ve worked and cooked and cleaned…or if not then scraped together things from our fridge and called it a meal and swept the piles of messy clothes and unread mail into a corner to deal with later. It’s been a loooong week.
to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor
and the day of vengeance of our God;
I’ll be honest, this has been a tough season for me. Along with being overwhelmingly busy with work, for which I AM thankful since I’m a freelancer, life has thrown me a few curve balls that I’d rather do without. It seemed that as soon as I threw up the white flag with work, asking for help and seeking a break, another zinger came my way and I was knocked down unexpectedly. Only instead of it is being work, this was personal. I felt crushed, defeated, angry and tired.
to comfort all who mourn.
Overwhelmed, I’ve returned to my knees, praying tearful prayers of petition. Do you know that place? Hands clenching balled up wads of tissues, red-eyed and a face full of defeat you cry out to God asking why…when…how?
To grant to those who mourn in Zion –
to give them a beautiful headdress instead of ashes,
…That dark place where you feel utterly alone, even as life swirls on around you. That place where everything seems to be going wrong only for you, while life seems to be all bunnies and rainbows to most the people around you?
the oil of gladness instead of mourning;
the garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair,
I know that place well. I’m not sure why God has brought be here yet again. Perhaps I’ll never truly know. Perhaps that’s part of the lesson — trusting in the midst of tears. Isn’t that how faith works? This dark place where I walk with hands outstretched, feeling for something that I can hold onto, my eyes straining to find a glimpse of light…
that they may be called oaks of righteousness,
the planting of the Lord, that he may be glorified.
His faithfulness. That’s where I cling. Knowing that He always has come through and will again. And there IS a plan. And beyond that, so many promises. Promises for hope, for a future, for gifts beyond comprehension.
They shall build up the ancient ruins;
they shall raise up the former devastations;
they shall repair cities,
the devastations of many generations. (Isaiah 61)
Sweet friends, I can’t think of anything more wonderful than this promise: a beautiful headdress instead of ashes…gladness instead or mourning…praise instead of despair. How rich a promise God has for us! Yes,this walk is hard and there are all sort of curve balls that keep coming our way but thank God that His plan for our lives includes building us up instead of tearing us down.
And so I keep walking towards the light, my eyes slowly seeing a hint of the light. It’s faint and sometimes even hidden, but I know it’s there. His promise awaits me.