moments of truth · the Word

help yourself; the anthem

One afternoon I was taking a ride to clear my head and to enjoy a phone call with a far away friend, and I came upon a field. ¬†I had taken this narrow road hundreds of times past corn crops, and I’d seen it in season and out of season, but I had never seen it look this way. ¬†Ethereal. ¬†I had to pull the car over to look longer, and to save something about it¬†for my heart.

Amos 4:13 New Living Translation
For the LORD is the one who shaped the mountains, stirs up the winds, and reveals his thoughts to mankind. He turns the light of dawn into darkness and treads on the heights of the earth. The LORD God of Heaven’s Armies is his name!

Have you ever taken a picture of something knowing that your photo will never do it justice?  

You shrug on the inside, take the shot despite this, and tell yourself when you look at it next,¬†it’ll be an inside joke. ¬†It will have rusted to something nowhere near as lovely as it was.

Yeah, this was the opposite of that.  What happened the next time I saw my photo was jolting.

The tiny lens captured the transience of the scene and the feeling of it even more vividly in one image than I had been able to appreciate in person.  My eyes deceived me.   I had lowballed the whole scenario.  The picture became a surprise comfort at the end of the day that swelled my heart like an unbidden shoulder rub.  More evidence of goodness stubbornly afoot.

For all the times that God slips us a portion we never asked for, or drops us the sweet ache of relief unawares, I love him all the more.  He is masterful in his arrangement of the ways he shows us his face.

Because of that, I’ve come to believe¬†that there are no small comforts. ¬†I’m convinced that the way he keeps me from letting go of his hand in the middle of every hard lesson, loss, or sacrifice, is by sweetening the deal.

God is crafting

our stories into goodness,

our anguish into endurance,

our blooper reels into pure wisdom,

our rest into relief,

our most ardent longings into road maps and rescues.

So help yourself

to your stories, your anguish, your blooper reel, your rest, and your most ardent longings

and help yourself to mine.

Because, don’t you want the joy¬†and resilience¬†and understanding¬†and comfort and perspective¬†that your life is studded with? ¬†If these things are already yours? ¬†Can you even stand to resist that kind of abundance?

There is nothing to stop you because

God is crafting

the power it takes to smile,

the hope essential to breathe,

the kindness you need to let things go,

the softness of a rest,

trust enough for¬†tomorrow –

to make you brave and storied and real

and serve you as comfort

one friend

at a time.

 

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