Manna Grace

 

Tuesday’s alarm sounded at 5 like every other morning, and like every other morning I pressed snooze for fifteen more minutes.  At second bell, I tapped again and lay on my back for a view of the ceiling.

Burning tears replaced a burning lack of sleep.  “I don’t know what to do!” I cried in a whispered panic then rolled onto my right side with a fetal plea, sobbing.  Short-lived yet intense, I relaxed then and knew what to do, go to sleep.

That’s exactly what I did, for two more hours.

Quite a lot like a discouraged Elijah, I slept…

And he prayed that he might die, and said “It is enough! Now, Lord, take my life”…Then he lay down under the tree and fell asleep.

1 Kings 19:4, 5a

and awakened later, having received what I needed most.

Right now I’m in a wilderness, weary and wandering and longing for home.  The landscape is wide-open, the terrain rugged, harsh and I struggle to keep my bearings.

I’ve never been one to appreciate deserts, but every day I am learning that even deserts, or at least parts of them can be, well…

beautiful.

I’m getting tired.  One can only walk so far.

And I wonder, how long?

valley6837DSC_0050-Dry-desert-landscape

But then it occurs to me…

manna2

isn’t this where manna was given?

Manna1

and gathered?

mana3Then the children of Israel did so and gathered, some more, some less…he who gathered much had nothing left over, and he who gathered little, had no lack.                                    Exodus 16: 17 & 18 

And he who gathered,

gathered just enough.

Maybe the key is in the gathering.

And when I look back I will find that I’ve gathered

just enough strength, just enough courage, just enough wisdom

and just enough of everything I need.

When You Don’t See

On an early morning Wednesday, I glanced at the time.  It read 6:36 and my eyes had been opened for approximately 90 minutes of the more than fourteen-hundred and forty allotted to me and everyone else we call 24 hours.

Almost without exception, each morning of past 20 plus years or so has become known as my “devotional time”, when I get up at 5,  push the “on” button and wake up to “smell the coffee”.

This is my time for questions and reflecting and pondering the deepest mysteries of life, my life.  I do a lot of talking either verbally or in journaling. Sometimes I sing.   I try to listen.  Sometimes, I even hear.

Two weeks unemployed now and more pondering, more prayers, seeking answers but mostly that I “see”.  Two weeks of resumes and phone calls, interviews and possibilities

and mud smeared on my eyes, only I don’t know how to wash it off.

So I glance at the neon digits to my left and in another one of my light bulb moments I think ‘Matthew chapter 6’, where Jesus promises to provide

for my needs.

So that’s where I go, first gospel, sixth chapter and immediately think

 I was mistaken,

and read

these words

in red,

“but I said to you that you have seen me and yet do not                              believe.”                                                                                            John 6: 36

              Or was I

mistaken?

Signs, direction; always seeking, never finding.

All around me all the time!

IMG_0639A small bright spot,

royal cascade,IMG_0653

 

IMG_0592the ordinary

majestic. blogmajestic

Signs and wonders moment by moment and grace by grace, our Father God opens His hands and waits patiently

until we

open our eyes.

 

For a Purpose

Be gentle with yourself as you are with others. Let yourself off the hook.  Stop measuring your worth by someone else’s yardstick.  You’re perfect because you’re perfectly mine. You are special and especially loved.

I created you on purpose for a purpose.  There is nothing random or happenstance about your life.  You are uniquely and forever Mine.

You have a tender spirit but never for one moment believe this is a weakness.  This is a lie perpetrated by the enemy of your soul and lies have no hold on My children.

Embrace your sensitivity.  It is My gift to you because by it, I enable you to hear My voice and sense My presence

Accept your vulnerability. This is no need for shame. Remember you are mortal.

Care for your spirit in the same way that you’d care for a newborn babe. Hold her gently and love her well,

because I do.

The Question

blog4Questions?  You bet.  I’m chock full.  Right now, you see, I have no job and no income.

How do I live brave? strong? certain?  How do I do this thing called life?  Or should I say survival?

No answer forthcoming, only the delicate and rhythmic beat of a nearby second-hand, steady and constant.  Time moves slowly now, or at least more slowly than normal, more slowly than working days.

No answer but a question. “Do you believe?”

It came without voice, without words.  Delicate, not quite silent, but without sound, like light; gentle like the rhythmic grace of a second-hand.

“Do you believe?” was the question.  “Yes Lord,” was the answer.

It wasn’t “Do you now believe?” as though immediately following a miracle; but simply “Do you?”

It was the same question Jesus posed to Martha,

“Jesus said to her, ‘I am the resurrection and the life.  He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; and whoever lives and believes in me will never die.  Do you believe this?’ And Martha answered, ‘Yes Lord, I believe that you are the Christ, the Son of God who was to come into the world'”       John 11: 25-27

The same question just before…

He shouted…

“Lazarus, come forth!”

Holding onto Tangible

This has been an eventful summer, beginning June 4 when I stepped out of the  position which had been eliminated and within a few days, stepped into another believing that I’d finally “arrived”.   This was, I reasoned, where I could “settle” and from where I would eventually retire.

But perceptions and reality are often two very different animals.  By week two, I knew; and on July 8, I quit.  I had no plan B; no plan period.

Now what God?

Two days ago, Mandissa’s “Stronger” awakened me sounding crystal clear on a radio alarm which usually plays static in the sapphire pre-dawn darkness.  I wasn’t sure how I was feeling, but stronger surely was not it.

Beyond groggy, three questions, three single-worded ones strapped me to my bed and lay heavy across my shoulders.  Three questions, not even whispered, not yet thought, but heard nonetheless.  Three questions and…

silence, and a holy exchange.

He hears “What now?”  He hears “What if?”  He hears “How?”

He says “Trust Me child and lean not in your own understanding. Your understanding is limited because you are human.  I AM God.  Be still and know. I see the bigger picture. I am preparing a place and I go before you. My understanding and My ways are higher than yours.”

“Be still and know. Your times are in My capable hands. Just place one foot in front of the other. You have only today in front of you. Trust Me for tomorrow. Do not be anxious. Do what you know to do right now. Stay in communication with Me moment by moment and trust that I will reveal My plans as you have need to know them.”

He says “Trust in Me with all your heart and not on your own understanding, your perceptions, your ‘feelings’ or what you ‘sense’. These are not your assurance. Emotions and perceptions fluctuate and depend on circumstance; but this is not your security.  I AM beyond circumstance.  I AM steady and sure. Trust in Me with all your heart. Lean not on your own understanding. Acknowledge Me, know that I AM the God who will never leave nor forsake you. Whisper My name.  Be mindful that I AM your constant.  I AM closer than your very breath. Do this often throughout the day; and I, the Great I AM, will make your paths straight. Walk before Me this day.  Walk with your head held high and you will hear a voice behind you saying ‘this is the way, walk in it.'”