Holding on to me

It was another one of those days.  Relentless stress hammered me from every corner of my life.  My chest felt so tight, my breath so short.  My hands shook uncontrollably and thoughts raced through my mind at a million miles an hour.  What if? Why? When? How? I can’t cope any more.  Not one second can I stand this pressure!  The overwhelming fear and anxiety crippled me.  Again.

I collapsed onto my bed, sobbing, lying on my back and listening to a song that had just come on my ipod.

Pieces.

I felt like my life was in Pieces but this song spoke something different to me.  As I listened, as I lay there in tears, I heard reassuring words telling me how Papa God loves….

‘Your love’s not fractured
It’s not a troubled mind
It isn’t anxious
It’s not the restless kind
Your love’s not passive
It’s never disengaged
It’s always present
It hangs on every word we say
Love keeps its promises
It keep its word
It honors what’s sacred
‘Cause its vows are good
Your love’s not broken
It’s not insecure
Your love’s not selfish
Your love is pure

I meditated.
I repeated those words to my heart and I started to believe that Papa could love me the way He was telling me.

Suddenly, as my painful world continued to spin, I saw a moving picture form in my mind.  I saw myself as Papa’s child being held tightly by his two hands as he spun me around and around lifting me off the ground. I squealed almost in fear but he spoke to me firmly and lovingly saying, ‘Just look into my eyes.  I hold your hands.  Focus on me, look at my face.  Don’t look at the world that spins chaotically around you now.  Just keep looking in my eyes of love.  It’s not your responsibility to strive to hold onto me because I hold YOU.  All you have to do is keep your eyes locked in mine and trust me.  Know that I am loving you right now.  In the middle of your storm, I am strong, reliable and you are secure in my love for you’.

It was only a few minutes of snatched time that I had in my bedroom for it was rudely interrupted by shouts of fighting downstairs.  BUT that precious, moment, that real and life changing encounter with Daddy God impressed on me that He is ALWAYS talking to us.  We just need to stop and listen.

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How many times can a heart be broken? 

How many pieces can it be shattered into? 

Even when you mend it with liquid gold it still feels bruised, heavy and blue. 

How many mountains are ahead on the pathway? 

How many valleys loom large and deep? 

Even though you carry my tired, weary body I can’t help but helplessly weep. 

Questions, they plague me. 

Answers elude me. 

Blame tries to find me. 

Guilt sets upon me.  

Love has abandoned me. 

Hope hides its face. 

Trust drowned with dreams in that nightmarish place. 

BUT.  

There has to be a but. 

But God. Father. Daddy. Papa. Abba. 

Your barely audible name slips from my mouth and dares to bring life. I have no choice but to die….or choose life. Enable me to choose Hope. Love. Peace. Calm. Rest. Enable me to choose to do life. With you. Daddy. 

The world stopped spinning…

The world stopped spinning today! It really, actually did.
My world. I was sitting amidst the pandemonium that is ‘after school home works, snacks and chats’ and all of a sudden everything around me seemed quieter and dulled and the words of a song pierced my soul. I’d never ‘heard’ this song before yet I’ve listened to it a hundred times. Father God spoke to me. 

Clearly. 

Succinctly. 

I heard his voice through the words of the song and I immediately penned a response. 

I couldn’t tell you now what song it was and perhaps I’ll never know for it was my unique moment in time when my daddy stopped the world from spinning just for me. Just to tell me, that he is loving me. 

Right now. 

Here. 

In the chaos, in the mystery, in life. 


In this moment the chaos ceases,

My world stops and I go to pieces.

Your voice burns into my heart, 

as you tell me it’s ok to fall apart.

My baby steps are gigantic leaps,

leading into your unending peace. 

You pause my day,  just to tell me

that we’re in love, so deeply.

The creator of life serenades me,

a love song so melodic and sweet,

so strong and piercing I cannot deny

It reaches deep inside my sighs. 

The moment passes, I move on

but the words you spoke are never gone. 



Zephaniah 3:17

For the Lord your God is living among you.

He is a mighty saviour.

He will take delight in you with gladness.

 With his love, he will calm all your fears.

He will rejoice over you with joyful songs.

  

25 Days of Beauty Wonder. Advent Calendar Day 24

Ready for the big day?!  

Face cleansed, serum smoothed on and new moisturiser applied. (Thank you Advent Calendar Day 24!).   I use No 7’s night cream and I love its fragrance, texture and the way it slowly sinks in.  Whether it makes me younger and fresher looking is for my hubby to judge! 

Preparation for tomorrow is everything isn’t it!  

 

Clean jammies on, bed sheets changed and Santa food left out.  Dinner schedule planned and presents nearly all wrapped.  Table set, big bird in the fridge, awaiting to be the centrepiece of the feast of the year.  Months of preparation and the big man in the red suit can finally make an appearance!  It’s a bit like preparing to give birth…and it’s over in hours!  

I wonder how Mary prepared for her big day?  Did the Innkeeper throw her a ‘surprise’ baby shower with pink and blue bales of hay?   Did the stable’s manger and beams have matching bows and buttons?  Was she concerned about that or did she simply long for the safe delivery of the baby boy who would soon deliver her?   

Can we simplify Christmas?  Make it really matter again?

Forget who’s tree is the nicest. Who spent the most. Who got the most. Who’s house is the cleanest. 

How about who needs Jesus the most??!!  I do!  I definitely do. 

  

And I know other families who don’t need gifts from under the tree……they need the Father’s gift of Jesus. 

A family who lost a mum this year.  A mum with depression, anxiety and battling an eating disorder.  A husband struggling to carry the excess load because his wife is ill. 

Freedom from your struggles and illnesses, self imposed rules and perfectionism is a process that happens INSIDE a relationship with Father.  Enter into the relationship you were created to have.  A relationship that changes you and frees you to love without agenda.  That’s #alliwantforchristmas  

 

Enjoy your big day, I hope your heart is prepared, as well as your skin.  

 

25 Days of Beauty Wonder.  Advent Calendar Day 23

Beautiful skin eye make up remover was a welcome sight for sore eyes this morning.  If you don’t use a good product on your delicate lashes then you can end up pulling them out every night in a careless attempt to cleanse them!  My current eye make remover is decidedly pricey but it’s the only product that works for me. It swiftly sweeps away Estee Lauder’s Doublewear eyeliner and Benefit’s ‘They’re Real’ Mascara.  And No7’s treat this morning came close, but alas fell at the last hurdle. 

The eyeliner disappeared without a trace but I feared for my lashes fate as I tried to cleanse them unsuccessfully.  I won’t be making this a makeup bag staple, as long as I’m wearing Beneifts mascara anyway. 

#disappointed but I’m glad I had the opportunity to try it! 

 

The one thing these two products have in common is their layering.  To use them effectively they need a good shake, bringing oil and water liquids together.   Only then can their soothing effectiveness come into its own.  

For me I’ve realised that healing comes in layers too.  At times I’ve experienced a gentle peace and a subsiding of pain…only for the wound to be ripped open again!  How devastating when you think you’ve been healed, when you’re sure you’ve forgiven, when you’ve acknowledged abuse and ‘moved on’ but in reality there is a deeper wound, under the superficial layers, that need an outpouring of Father’s love and healing honey. 

  

Physically your body goes into this amazing flurry of activity when hurt; making new cells, antibodies and growing fresh pink skin but when it’s emotional hurts there’s nothing you can ‘do’!  Frustration can almost blind you.  The need to control does just that and perhaps manifests as an eating disorder or self harming.  

BUT if you can just rest in him, if you can allow yourself to be guided, if you can stop wanting to do everything your way then maybe you’ll see that his way is the path that leads you beside blissful brooks.  And if you can’t stop your need to fix yourself then at least just pray ‘Father enable me to be willing to be healed. By you’. 

With every prayer, every baby step of being willing, Father grows new cells, building layers of his love that will lead you to paths of righteousness.  Maybe that seems so far away right now but through the pain call out to him.  He is the only true healer. 

Father Take me a little deeper in the healing process. 

25 Days of Beauty Wonder. Advent Calendar Day 21

Luxurious volume from root to tip. 

  

That’s a weighty promise and one that will have to wait to be fulfilled!!  Behind door 21 lay a full sized mascara, ‘Extravagant Volume, waterproof’.  But I’m not going to open it!!  I’m not even tempted.  It would be wasteful as I have a mascara open already and once opened it needs to be used up within 6 months.   I don’t know how it will possibly compete with my current product!  I’m loving Benefit’s ‘They’re Real’.  If you haven’t tried it, TREAT yourself, you won’t be disappointed! 

Christmas is four sleeps away and as I place the mascara in my Christmas tree to be photographed I am filled with a sense of pleasure and horror all at once.  I love my tree decorations.  Each ornament is glass, sparkly, silver and beautiful.  BUT my youngest child was playing too near it this afternoon and the whole thing came tumbling down. Now, it is a mess. Tinsel awry, lights loosely hanging, baubles in a pool on the floor and a missing star.  Nothing where it ‘should’ be…according to me!  I was going out tonight to meet a friend and I suggested to my family that they might want to fix the tree up a little whilst I was gone.  My suggestion was met with blank looks. ‘Nothing much wrong with it’ apparently.  I find this incredibly hard to digest.  And yet as much as it annoys me it reminds me of an amazing part of the story ‘The Shack’.  

 

The main character Mackenzie toils for hours in a garden with lovely Sarayu. They dig, snip, shovel, untangle and clear and when they finish it seems to Mac like there is so much more to be done.  He stands back and declares that although beautiful, the garden really is a mess. Sarayu explains that the garden is his soul and while they have been working relentlessly with each other, there has been a wondreful purpose. His soul is a wild chaos in colour. Confusing, stunning and incredibly beautiful is Mac’s heart. And mine.  And yours too! 

‘To you it seems a mess, but to me, I see a perfect pattern emerging and growing and alive-a living fractal’

My once beautiful tree, with no7 mascara in it, is without doubt a mess but instead of allowing my inherited OCD tendencies to rise up, I choose now to see it as a picture of how father sees me…….an incredibly, delightful, chaotic fractal that he loves to spend time in.  Wild, growing and alive.  Thank god I’m alive!

I go to bed now knowing that I am a mess, but a beautiful one.    

 

25 Days of Beauty Wonder. Advent Calendar Day 20

  

Gold eyelash curlers?!
Wow, No7 really surpassed themselves this morning!
There’s no doubt about it, these bad boys WORK, giving instant product gratification! After using them, my lashes were beautifully curved, appearing lengthened and opening up the eyes.  Mascara was swiftly applied and the fate of the lashes sealed! The shape held throughout the day and I was impressed with No7 once again! I’d forgotten how effective eyelash curlers were and years ago had tossed them aside; but now, these gold tools lie snugly in my daily make up bag!  

The statement on today’s advent door is ‘Ready, Set, Curl‘ and whilst I did that very successfully I couldn’t help thinking about the times I have just wanted to ‘Curl up and die’, maybe because of a deep discouragement or hurt.  Anyone who hasn’t experienced discouragement isn’t human!  At times we can feel like this because we are worn out or struggling with an illness. Sometimes it’s because we are too idealistic and we have expectations that can’t be met.  

Often we plunge ourselves into activities that we think will bring us fulfilment: sports, careers, drugs, adultery are some traps we fall into. Painfully these only compound our discouragement and depression.  

 

Psalm 23 (Passion Translation) never fails to lift me from discouragement. 

‘¹God is my Fierce Protector and my Pastor. I always have more than enough. ²He offers a resting place for me in His luxurious love.  His tracks take me to the quiet brooks of bliss, the oasis of peace.  ³That’s where He restores and revives my life.’

Read the rest here.  

In my discouragement father offers me a resting place in his luxurious love. He promises bliss and peace.

As I meditate on his precious life giving words my discouragement begins to melt. He loves me and he revives my life. Renewed, I declare I don’t want to curl up and die…I want to live. Loved.