A Door of Hope

As I was working on my Bible study homework this morning, I came across this drawing that Mercy Doyle made for me when I was visiting them a few weeks ago. At the time, it struck me that of all the things she could have drawn for me, she would draw this on the page. A rectangle. It reminded me of a door or an opening of some kind, but I didn't have much time to reflect on it...I was actually working on getting ready to catch my flight home. So I stashed it in my workbook so it wouldn't get wrinkled.

But just now, I pulled it out, and I saw something profound. As I looked at it once again, I felt like God was showing me that it was indeed a Doorway. A doorway to Him. And I recalled a scripture in Hosea 2 that has meant everything to me.

The LORD’s Mercy on Israel

14 "Therefore, behold, I will allure her,
and bring her into the wilderness,
and speak tenderly to her.

15 And there I will give her back her vineyards
and make the Valley of Trouble a door of hope."

Immediately I was thrust back into a time of great personal turmoil and emotional agony. As I walked through many days of pain, this scripture was a light into my dark soul and salve to my bruised heart. It literally began to heal the broken places and bring me back to a full and abundant life.

And of all the things Mercy could have drawn for me, I'm not sure she could have drawn anything more personally relevant and profound for me. I'm not even sure I can put it into words.

It's a reminder for me of where God has brought me from -- a terribly dark oppressive place -- into a vineyard brimming with abundant fruit and life. He has truly changed my "valley of trouble" into a Door of Hope that I've gladly walked through.

And as I've fasted and prayed for Mercy and the Doyles, I have once again been "allured" by God and He has indeed spoken so very tenderly to me. This moment in time of putting Mercy's drawing together with what God has done in and for me, and what He wants to continue doing in me is priceless. It's big. It's eternal.

In fact, so many things had to happen for this moment to divinely occur. Because I've been sick, I stayed home from church with my little guy, who has also been sick. Because I was missing out on church, I grabbed my Bible study workbook to get into God's word. Because I worked on my study, my spirit was awakened to some amazing insights and revelations. Because I was so moved, I began to pray and really passionately speak with God. And when I was done, I saw the drawing...and it all clicked.

My family should have arrived home from church already. I had just talked to my husband before I had this divine encounter. But they haven't made it yet. Could it be that God arranged for them to mosey on home the long way so He could speak to me? I believe it with all of my heart. Because our God is amazing like that.

And the fact that the subcaption of this portion of scripture bears Mercy's very name is even more amazing. My continued prayer is that God would continue to speak tenderly to Mercy. That he would take her hand and walk her out of that valley of trouble and through His door of hope.

And I believe He has already begun to do so...

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