When my spirit sends alarming signals before my brain fully awakes, panic usually follows. Worry sketched out memories of past hurts, disappoints or troubled times. Like a bulging suitcase, those experiences erupted screams in my head, causing a migraine. Before I knew it, they run rampant like rudely, undisciplined children. Past disasters resurrected, wracking my morning with darkness. I didn’t want to face the day.
In a prayer, I sent and SOS to the Lord before worry dresses my heart with apprehension. But panic opened the gate and I began to wonder, what have I forgotten to take care, which child is facing hardships, or will an old issue poke its head to destroy the peace and joy I have?
I wondered, why was my spirit troubled?
Then I asked the Lord, “What should I have done to prevent this unsettling feeling within me? Would being more watchful over my self instead of others, praying instead of playing, listening instead of photographing nature, time meditating instead of social media?
Something within me said, you should have been more astute. Astute, is not a word I use. I knew it was the Holy Spirit talking. I looked up the word, for I really didn’t know what it ment.
Then I heard, “Prepare yourself for the turbulence that’s coming.”
I asked, ” Lord, is this message from you?”
A confirming feeling came over me. Then, I knew why my soul was troubled.
The unpacked past issues came to mind again. I couldn’t stop them from painting their sketched images and adding a new possible scenario. Once, I sat down to journal the annoying voices were hushed away.
I was thankful, my Lord warned me or else apprehension would have come along and chained me with the heaviness of fear and the cloud of confusion.
A question entered my mind, is this really from God?
I stopped writing, I prayed, if this message is from you Lord, keep me astute, Then I will be watchful and ask you to help me when worry, apprehension, anxiety, confusion and fear crowd to enter my mind and fall into my heart. Please don’t allow me to become crippled by these hindrances and enslave me again.
After my prayer, my room became brighter as if the sky became bluer and the morning sun shined bright into the space I sat. Yet, the light gray blanket of clouds covered the sky and blocked the sun. Then I felt a warmth, much like the sun in summer landing on my back.
I told myself, if God permitted this disturbance to come my way today for my growth. Then I reminded myself of who held me, Jesus, He will protect and guide me as I lived on. Then the Holy Spirit led me to the verse in Philippians 2:13“For it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose.”
Today, May 6, I remind myself, trust God’s process, remain faithful and give no room for doubt or fear to reign. As soon as they show their presence, run to Jesus for help.
Fear was a god in my life, who I would obey without me realizing it. I listened and reacted to its triggers. But now those triggers send me to Jesus.
Remember, as children when we got in trouble, we were sent to timeout?
As a parent, I would tell my kids to think about what they did wrong. While the child sat, they would have to stay there until they, themselves, identified their error and understood the correct manner of behavior. Which I had already explain to them, but they had to own their choice and decide to make better choices in the future.
Without knowing why, today, my soul was troubled, I had the urge to go for a drive and have a timeout. Expecting to learn the error of my ways I desired to find a place out in nature to listen to what God had taught me and seem to be trying to remind me. Eagle River, Alaska came to mind. Being a place where bears are cited, I invited a friend and off we went. (We didn’t see any bears, which we were thankful after learning that this was the time for brown bears and grizzlies to be passing through to feed from the salmon runs.)
Before leaving my place, I took time to read my devotional. As soon as I read the verses, I had the urge to leave, now. Without reading any further, I left with three questions packed in my heart. What should I be asking? What should I be seeking? And where should I be knocking? Eagerly I drove, expecting to hear definite answers from God at some point on the hike but, none came.
For those of you who know the passage, the verses were from Matthew 7:7-8 “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.” They’re familiar verses in the Christian community, but for me this time they had something new to teach me. I just didn’t know exactly what that lesson was, because I hadn’t identify where I stood with God.
Seating and pondering on my day in Eagle River, which I didn’t receive answers or clarity of these verses or my errored ways, I read the rest of the devotional. It reminded me to be persistent in asking and that Jesus doesn’t recommend for us to ask, He commands for us to ask. Now that’s something to think about for my future timeout from my day.
The devotional also said, that asking isn’t quite sufficient from Jesus’ point of view. He wants us to take it up a notch. We should seek out what we need from God and we will find it. Well asking is much less work than seeking, because one doesn’t have to do anything. While seeking takes our effort not just God’s. There are times, I just want the answer without much work on my part.
Do you remember asking your mom for something you know she could easily give you, but she sent you out to find it yourself and then get it on your own? Well I’m wondering if that’s what God was trying to tell me, when I rather for Him to just hand it to me. I still wonder, what is it that I truly want? I sense I must go on to the third question maybe I will receive clarity.
Knocking on the door is the final step. Well the devotional reference that the door is heaven’s door. It also mention that our asking and seeking takes us to the very doorsteps of heaven. Once there, we shouldn’t just stand there and wait, we should knock on the door. Well to tell you the truth, I’ve been afraid to knock on the door. Why? Because of what God has to offer.
What if God gives me my heart desire only to be taken away. Maybe, I don’t want to feel that pain again, so I will not knock, then I keep what I long for in the longing place of my heart. No wonder I felt like a timeout. I needed to see the error of my thinking and correct it with truth. It is better to have had it for a short while than not to have it at all. Besides, who told me that it will be taken again and why bother having it in the first place? Who have I been listening to? Whom have I followed? I’ve listen to the voices of Doubt, Disappointment and Fear.
They misguided me because of the troubles that have come and taken the good things my husband and I have been blessed with in Vancouver. We placed our house on the market and sold within twelve hours. We had to leave quickly that we didn’t have time to say good-bye to our friends. The move-out happened in less than two weeks from our return of our working travels. Our belongings were stuffed in storage and off we flew to Alaska to work again.
Now, we are homeless and have no idea where to plant our life and allow roots to grow. You see, I have lived in almost twenty places in thirty-five years of marriage which includes less than ten city moves and seven states covering from Texas to Maryland to Montana to Washington and now Alaska.
Do you see why I’m shy to knock and ask where should I be seeking residency? At the moment, we’re staying in an Airbnb in Alaska provided by my husband’s work. When he’s not working we’ll be staying with my daughter in Seattle, Washington.
I know once I knock on the door of heaven, it will be open. God will meet me and He will provide the answer. But, will it be the answer I seek? Or will He offer me the answer which is best to produce the fruits that are needed? I also know, that God will hand my husband and I not only what we need but gift us with more, with the purpose of sharing. All things do come from his storehouse and he will place the gifts into our hands for us and for us to share.
I understand. It’s not about finding residency, a house to call home or having a dwelling place. It’s about asking and seeking where does God want us, my husband and I to bear fruit. Like the devotional said, all of our persistent asking, seeking and knocking shows God that we are serious and sincere about our desire to bear fruits like John teaches.
John 15:16 “You have not chosen Me, I have chosen you. I have set you apart for the work of bringing in fruit. Your fruit should last. And whatever you ask the Father in My name, He will give it to you.”
Am I ready to ask, seek and knock? I am. I’ve recognize the error of my ways, listening and believing the voices of Doubt, Disappointment and Fear instead of the voice of my Shepard, Jesus himself. I should trust Him with our future, my husbands and mine as a couple and mine as an individual.
Father, In Jesus name I come and ask to show me the way my husband and I should go and where to plant our lives to bear fruit, so that you can feed those who hunger after your precepts and desire to draw closer to you plus, to learn about your Son, the one who saves, died and rose again, Jesus, who conquered our sins, who forgives without our cost. for He paid it all. Thank you for choosing me. In Jesus name I ask, seek and knock. And in His name I wait to find a home to share of what God has in store for my husband and me.
Incase, you want to know why I try to post positive and uplifting words and scripture?
Because they are my personal road map to myself.
Otherwise, the negative, put down, and hindering voices make me doubt on where to head. When they come, they not only want to hang around, but navigate my life. Telling me to go back where I came from.
Often, I return to a previous post only to read what I have told myself, slamming the door on the voices of doubt, insecurity, fear and insignificance.
With the Lord’s confidence, I remind myself, I am no longer that small, timid, shrinking back latina girl.
More and more, I voice, “I am bold and courageous and daring. I’m a pillar of fire whom can’t easily be put out.
I know God has gifted me with the ability to express my thoughts and see beauty to photograph.
Through my photography I soar like an eagle as I explore where life takes me. At places where the Lord allows my feet to walk, His Spirit helps me see the beauty around.
I only need to listen and go where the light shines and the wind moves. There, I see what God wants me to see and I can’t wait to share my finds and words here with you.
Thank you for taking the time to read my thoughts. God bless each of you.