I was driving to work early one morning, thinking of all my stressors. There are our finances, the meeting with my big boss, the fact that I have been recently diagnosed with gestational diabetes, and more. My shoulders were tense, my hands gripped the steering wheel, and I could feel myself doing those stupid “stress breaths”. Do you ever have those? The kind where you barely inhale and exhale because you’re so focused on everything else that is taunting your emotions? Yea…that’s what I was doing.
After a few minutes, I looked up. It was such an early morning that the clouds were magnificent. There were slight reds, blues, hues of pink, orange, and yellow. It was then that I felt it: the still, small voice of the Lover of my soul. I had chills down my spine as I listened to the whisper and felt the breath of God on my neck. The Creator of the Universe stepped away from painting the next sunset and blowing the next wave toward the Big Island to tell me one of the most powerful and poignant things He has ever said. In that moment, Abba’s words were etched onto my heart and implanted deep into my mind forever.
Just two words, but I was pierced and able to breathe again. I drew deep breaths that I could feel down to my toes. Air filled my lungs and the breath of God filled my Spirit. In my 2001 hoopty of a Camry, God was communing with me, letting me know that He’s got the whole World in His hands. God’s love for me is far greater than my own displeasure.
Jesus has been speaking these words for ages:
- When he met with the woman at the well, reciting her life story, Jesus was saying, “Let go”.
- As Jesus called Lazarus to come out of the tomb and shake off his grave clothes, he was saying, “Let go”.
- Jesus was saying, “Let go” when he called Peter out upon the waters.
- A massive herd of pigs ran, squealing down the side of a hill and into the water because Jesus had spoken to the demoniac saying, “Let go”.
I started thinking about my precious little boy, Ben. He had a splinter in his palm recently and didn’t want me messing with it. I tried to soothe his hand with oil and even waited several hours, in hopes that the splinter would work it’s way out, but nothing gave. I finally knew it was time to remove the splinter on my own. I grabbed my tweezers (Ben thinks they are the metal tools of death), and pulled my son up into my lap. He had already begun to scream and cry. He was kicking and screaming, and I feared he might pull my hair out. Mr. Determination was not about to let me near his splinter. He gripped his little hand closed as tightly as he could, holding on to the splinter. “Let go” didn’t seem to work in this situation. My son wasn’t going to budge.
How often do we close our hands tight, holding on to our pain, refusing to let go? How many times does Jesus come to us saying, “Let go”, yet we deny Him the opportunity to free us? How often to we deny ourselves freedom?
God’s love for us is…
- deeper than our anger.
- constant when we’re unstable.
- able to cover a long list of faults.
- a fortress to run to when we are afraid.
Prayer: Abba, help us to surrender the splinter. Amen.
And I’ll leave you with an invitation from Charles Spurgeon. The ending of his sermon on January 30, 1859 (155 years ago, tomorrow):
Men are afraid to go to Christ, or else they say, “My Sins are so many I cannot go to him; he will be angry with me.” Do you see his hands outstretched to you tonight? He is in heaven, and he still says, “Come unto me all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.” Are you afraid to come? Then, look at his hand—look at his hand, will not that induce you? “Oh,” but you say, “I cannot think that Christ can have it in his heart to remember such a worm as I.” Look at his side, there is easy access to his heart. His side is open, and even your poor prayers may be thrust into that side, and they shall reach his heart, holy though it be. Only do thou look to his wounds, and thou shalt certainly find peace through the blood of Jesus.
As we surrender the splinters in our own life, I am thankful that Christ surrendered Himself to the splinter.
“In Love’s service, only wounded soldiers can serve.”