The Repentance of Being Found!
Lord of Grace & Mercy:
Thank you that repentance means “I am found”! You find me like a coin swept under the couch – dusting, polishing, & refining me until I am made new. You are the gifted artist orchestrating a masterpiece with precise hands. You understand & know the finished product you are making. Your love is not for my benefit. Your glory is manifest by your heartbeat for me. In your fullness – presence completely & uniquely intrinsic upon itself – you chose to need me & to love me. Oh, Sweet Jesus, how you do.
“You asked for a loving God: you have one. The great spirit you so lightly invoked, the ‘lord of terrible aspect’ is present: not a senile benevolence that drowsily wishes you to be happy in your own way, not the cold philanthropy of a conscientious magistrate, nor the care of a host who feels responsible for the comfort of his guests, but the consuming fire Himself, the Love that made the worlds, persistent as the artist’s love for his work & despotic as a man’s love for a dog, provident & venerable as a father’s love for a child, jealous, inexorable, exacting as love between the sexes. How this should be, I do not know…”
-The Problem of Pain, CS Lewis
My heart has broken open – bleeding desire. Does it seek to love you? The Deceiver lustfully & bitterly whispers, “You are not enough, Melissa”. The words seem to be branded from a tender age – scorched to the marrow. It beats madly against the confines of the ribcage, fearing what you might ask from it. Just as poor “Much Afraid”, pricked with the seed of the Shepherd’s love, trembled over her companions “sorrow & “suffering”, so my heart trembles. It does not easily understand Your ways. I did not realize how sorrow & suffering would strengthen hind’s feet or cause the seed of love to grow & produce fruit.
The physical pain is prevalent, unto breaking, in my life. This is an area Satan holds. Rip it from His hand Jehovah Rapha. Do not let him gain this ground. You, who created me, & know the very number of hairs on my head, who heal & restore & make gladness from mourning. Jesus, by your wounds I am healed. Help me not to live in the grip of fear. Help me relinquish my heart, body, & soul to your keeping. Teach me in the midst of suffering the goodness of your unfailing love & grace.
“Sing, O daughter of Zion! Shout, O Israel! Be glad and rejoice will all your heart, O daughter of Jerusalem! The Lord has taken away your judgements, He has cast out your enemy. The King of Israel, the Lord, the Lord, is in your midst; You shall see disaster no more. In that day it shall be said to Jerusalem: “Do not fear; Zion, let not your hands be weak. The Lord your God in your midst, The Mighty One, will save; He will rejoice over you with gladness, He will quiet you with His love, He will rejoice over you with singing.” – Zephaniah 3: 14-17
Thank you for this journey: For the suffering, sorrow, anguish, & uncertainty… the joy, love, purpose, & beauty! You are great & worthy to be praised. You sustain me, pursue me, & rescue me from the dark spaces. I am filled and completed by this love & I deeply desire to love you more. I run & hide in the cleft of the rock. You come calling me out of those jagged spaces; your love a song on your lips – my song, just for me. Quiet me with your love Jesus.
Implant in me the love for others. Help me to be encouragement, light, hope in the midst of the darkness, bitterness, & resentment. Hold this alabaster together, cracked & flawed as it is, spill your light from the ornate surface you handcrafted. Place a crown of laurel on my head. Remind me of my royalty. Make me a tabernacle – standing on holy ground. Love me Jesus; strengthen my wings so I can fly.
I surrender to the mystery. I fall into your loving arms. I tether myself to your mast. Take me to the farther places, enchant me in the desert, & make me a part of the adventure, strengthening my hind’s feet so I might graze with you.
“Faithless is he that says farewell when the road darkens.” – JRR Tolkien
Your Beloved Bride,