|Photo Credit: Lars Raun|
Okay...this is a first. I've never written two blog posts in one day before. But, something about today and the timeline of this past weekend created the perfect storm of revelation in my heart.
After months of this occurring in my life, I've stopped thinking it's a coincidence when I "happen to" read something that is in line without something else I've heard, read or been thinking about. Some people hear God's voice in their head/heart as loudly as an audible voice. I seem to hear him in the confluence of media and meditation.
After I wrote and posted my blog post earlier, this is what I read in my friend, Dawn's book, Driving Through Walls.
"As we stood around the well, he explained it had been closed for some time because of concern of kids falling in. I couldn't help but notice the closed well was surrounded by cacti -- plants that don't need water. I couldn't help but think the church there also closed up "The Well", for fear of its "danger" and then attempted to make themselves content by becoming plants that don't "need" water. How sad to give up luscious plant life for a garden of poky cacti -- not that cacti aren't lovely to look at, but next to a well?"
And...would you know, this is exactly what I was thinking about yesterday...and maybe didn't quite pinpoint in my earlier post. And truthfully, I'm not sure why I didn't get "all the way there" with my words.
But I had a revelation yesterday at church as the pastor (who is also my father) encouraged us to not fear the Holy Spirit as someone or something that is out to harm or embarrass us. And I don't view Him that way.
But, after being banged up a bit by hard knocks at the hand of fellow Christians who have been filled by this same Spirit and feeling that pain, I realized that in shutting down that internal suffering, I had unintentionally blockaded or "capped" the flow of the Spirit in my life.
In order to keep the danger out.
To feel safe.
To do anything but feel the sting of hurt and betrayal again.
Without intending to, I have become a cactus content with no need for the Living Water.
I'm not saying I haven't/don't need Jesus. I do. I have.
I have just lacked Power. Courage. The "Impossible-doesn't-exist" mentality that doesn't just attract others to Jesus...it propels and compels them to Him.
In shutting off the part of me that would most register and feel the sting of incoming emotional blows, I have unwittingly stopped up the flow out of me that would make it possible for me to dream extravagant dreams, to hope for the unbelievable, and let those streams of Living Water flow out to those around me.
I thought I was just guarding my heart. After all, the Bible says, "for it is the well spring of Life."
However, it says, "guard," not "put up heavy rocks and boulders in front of."
I've heard people say, "the Holy Spirit is a gentleman." Usually they say that to assuage people's fears that to be filled with the spirit means you will roll across aisles, swing from chandeliers, and babble like a baby.
But, I don't think the Holy Spirit is a gentleman -- strolling around in tails and a top hat patiently and politely leaving calling cards for people to get back to Him at their convenience.
I do believe that He waits for a willing and open heart, but I believe that after the door is opened to Him -- all bets are off. You cannot invite Him in and dictate the "code of conduct" as if he is merely staying as a house guest.
He owns the place and invites you to live with Him.
There might be hootin' and hollerin'. There might be things that would embarrass our frail human flesh and ego.
But there might also be resurrections, healings, and supernatural things that defy "common sense."
That's the type of life I want to live...what I've always wanted to live. But didn't realize until yesterday that I had walled myself off from it. Whether it was intentional or not, wanted or not....I've been living with a serious reduction of power flow.
I believe the Holy Spirit is a powerful wind --just like the one that is currently raging outside to the delight of my children. It's knocking down fences (I just finished propping up one section) and creating a sandstorm of fantastical proportions that my sweet babies are dancing within.
They do not fear it
They are reveling in it.
Screaming into it and asking for more.
A child is born without fear. We adults try to add in a "healthy dose" of it to keep them safe because experience has taught us that the wind isn't always safe.
It can destroy homes.
It can fan flames.
It can become a funnel and leave a wake of destruction.
But "child-like faith".... It doesn't say "childish" faith. It's not of a child.
To the contrary, I believe that's the faith of a full grown adult who has experienced bumps, bruises, falls and failures who still chooses despite "what reality would dictate" to walk out into that wind again.
Fully knowing the risk, but fully trusting in God's sovereignty.
We need not fear the power of the wind when we understand the One who controls it.