Thawing out…

It was one of those middle of the night Jesus wake-up calls.  I was having terrible dreams anyway  so the tug to get up was a relief.   I grabbed a blanket off the bed and sat in a chair in the dark. Chuck’s steady breathing was the only sound.

The last comment I remembered from my dream was “where is my heart?”  I just sat there in a half awake stupor trying to sort real from spirit from dreaming.  It was so bright outside that I thought  the moon was out but as my eyes adjusted I realized the white was snow.

I walked out into the kitchen and saw my snow- covered deck. “It’s supposed to be spring,” I mumbled to myself.  And as I pondered the paradox of snow in March, the lesson began.  “Your heart?” The Spirit pressed on me.

“My heart is covered in snow. It’s supposed to be blooming, but it’s covered in snow.” I whispered quietly.

“But Spring is coming,” He said.

“You’re gonna have to do something about this snow first, ” I said, half joking, half begging.  Then I heard a line from a song.  “All My love is for you, All My Love is yours.”

I stood there barefooted, wrapped in a blanket, stunned…

This conversation has been persisting for almost a week now.  And Jesus, being the “Faithful Strength” that He is, has been so patient, so tender, so encouraging.

Here are some points to ponder thus far:

Don’t rush the process. God is taking His own sweet time in bringing relief and revelation to me. So I am choosing to slow down, cut out, start fresh, whatever it takes to be able to listen when He brings insight.

Confess the hurt.  God is really challenging me to not fake, dismiss, or minimize the season. My heart is really going through the ringer. He is revealing wounding, sin and potential all in one loving step.  Only God can do that well.  But a few true friends can ease the journey.  So He has asked me to share, but to share with wisdom.  “Above all else, guard your heart.”  Don’t hide it, guard it.

Believe in the promises. Just because the route changes, doesn’t mean the destination has.  God has not changed His promises so He has asked me to stand on Him even when everything is shifting.  I can be uncomfortable, even miserable, and STILL be in Him.

All My love is yours.  Hard to feel sorry for yourself and believe this at the same time.  He has given medicine for every cut, and comfort for every heartache.  True to His nature, He has also given humor.

Look at the photo I took just yesterday.  I  rolled out ready to scrape off a layer of ice and the Lord stopped me. “Oh look,” He said. “There is ice on your car. But it is melting. I wonder what is melting the ice?” 

“Very funny.  You are so very funny. The sun…. or is that the Son? ” I said laughing. “I got it. I got it. The Son will melt the ice on my heart.”

Thank you Jesus. Your presence is our every hope.


Weed, Seed and Feed … and Plow

The term, “weed, seed and feed” originally came from a selling cycle. You weed unproductive accounts out, you prospect and propose for new business (seed), and you feed and nurture existing accounts for continued good business.

I like this notion. It is short, concise and helps keep a focus on needed actions. (It really pays in more way than one to have a husband in sales.) Over the years I have seen this principle apply to our spiritual lives.

We weed out the activities, beliefs and habits that damage our good spiritual crop. We all need an honest conversation with the Lord about what He sees that hurts or distracts from our harvest. Not once, but continually. Then we need to do what any good farmer would do, pull the weeds.

We go to God to receive more love, insight, and “seed,” then we scatter that as He leads. He loves to see new growth in our lives. He rejoices in those tiny green shoots taking root and thriving. But He has not given to us for our enjoyment alone. He has blessed us that we might bless others. At the proper time, He loves for us to work along side Him, casting out seed.

We feed and nurture the relationship with Him and with others so that we will surely reap what we have sown. Call it fertilizer. We care for our God field so that we yield a God crop.  Doesn’t this sound so happy? Churchy? And completely unrealistic??? 

It is because of this reaction that I have modified this cycle by adding one crucial step. Plow.

We do well to examine our hearts, fields and harvest. Why? Jesus said, I am the Way, the Truth and the Life. Through Him, we are life bearers, seed-bearers. Part of our inheritance as a child of God is that we share in His harvest. Harvest of souls. Harvest of righteousness, wisdom, health and favor.

I talk to many people who do none of these things and then complain that God is not real to them. No weeding (“I can do whatever I want”) no seeding (“I don’t feel like it”) and no feeding (“God doesn’t talk to me, so what is the point?”) His life in you is the only point. Not salvation. Not just buying the field and then letting it lay there dormant and undeveloped. But a field that God has great delight in, great plans to bring forth a harvest.

These dear ones need to ask for one simple thing: that God would plow up their hardened hearts. We need to ask God for a ground that has been softened by the rain of our tears, that has had a rototiller of truth dig deep and turn up the weedy top soil, that has let the warmth of His presence temper and prepare the ground for good seed. So how is your dirt?

 “Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.” Galations 6:9