It was more like navigating the terrain of my life over the last twenty years, with notable side trips to Old-Boyfriend-Photo World, Anxious-’n'-Desperate-Prayer Journal-dom, and Broken-Jewelry-Pieces Land. All which left me kinda freaked out by who I used to be, but mostly RELIEVED to remember who I am.
Not to mention the alarming number of empty shopping bags I found, considering I rarely shop. Most had pink stripes and “Victoria’s Secret” stamped across them ’cause I’m all about buying lingerie for my husband and promise it has nothing whatsoever to do with chasing a shrinking bra size.
(That’s my story and I’m stickin’ with it).
Among the more sentimental things, I came across the eulogy I delivered at my grandmother’s funeral, the Valentine’s Day card she’d bought me but didn’t have a chance to sign, and a white sheet of paper with a hastily-scrawled message, long since forgotten.
At a Sunday morning church service a guest speaker had cited Habakkuk as an encouragement to use journaling to chat with God. We were given a few minutes and a blank sheet to compose a note to God and a corresponding response back from Him. I was so moved in re-reading mine I thought you may enjoy it too:
Lord, I love you so much because you’ve rescued me from a pit of despair that I didn’t even know I was in. Where all I wanted was Your love and looked in lots of other places to find it–never knowing I had You all along–ready to love me, speak to me, hold me. Yours were the arms I longed to be in and yet I wrote about another’s. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Samantha, I knew you loved me all the time, you just had to find your way back to me. And you were tethered to me the whole time–with a rope, you were attached to me–it was just longer in length at some times than others. But you were never ever fully separated from me–or severed–that was never possible. Like a small, tender, young, innocent lamb you were guided by me as Your shepherd. Even though your heart is prone to wander I always call you back to me and always love you along the way. Why do you doubt that I have your best interests at heart? Just trust.
Good stuff, right? After the three-minute exercise, we were given an opportunity to share a quick testimony about the experience. Powerful tid-bits were shared but one in particular sticks out. An overweight man said that His “note from God” included the following advice: If you want to lose weight you have to eat less and exercise more.
I chuckle even now.
And continue to be awed, amused, and mostly, amazed by the God I love. Little did I know an itch to purge would lead to such a tangible reminder of who and whose I am.
But when you pray, go into your room (KJV uses “closet), close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you. Matthew 6:6
Postscript: Researching the passage above I found this “treasure room” language I love.
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