Worship, Create, Dream

Be free to Worship God. Create with abandonement because He is the Creator. Let's discover our Dreams together.


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Why Don’t I Feel Better?

I am going to bring you into one of my thought processes. The day it self way quite delightful. The weather was great (for Duluth).


Sunny,

Warm,

Gentle Breeze.

This made my walk an enjoyable part of my spiritual discipline as I prayed. After I returned home, I prepared a cup of coffee, got my book, journal and went to the deck. I was going to continue seeking God’s heart for mine. Sounds as though it is a time to soothe one’s soul.

Enjoying a nice cup of coffee in the morning.

Please don’t get the idea I am a “super Christian” with a great spiritual discipline all packed down and this post will give you hints as to how to begin your day all neat and tidy before you head off to your creativity. I want to bring you into more of who I am so you will understand my writing. (also don’t wait for the super Christian part. That is not happening. 🙂 )

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Today, I am telling you the BEST PLANS do not always make the emotional facts. I am a TYPE Four on the Enneagram. I did not understand why my internals were not lining up with the externals. I did not feel as though everything was working together for good for me. ( even though I do love the Lord. Roman 8:28)

I was still contemplating the information I gathered from the Does God Really Love Me? series we just finished from Easter Sunday. ( I am His Adopted Child, I am Truly Loved, I am His Masterpiece, God actually enjoys Loving Me and spending time with me). I was searching His path and seeking His heart for me. What is next Papa? Looking to not from.

What is the around the bend?

You would think this wonder and depth and anticipation would bring an exciting way for me to greet the rest of that day. WRONG!!!

This is more of how I felt inside. There may be a path, but all I could see was blurry broken woods.

Even though all of these externals lined into what could have blossomed into a great day, I did not FEEL great.

WHY?

Was I bad? Did I miss something? Was my walk with Jesus on a downward spiral after such a fantastic experience?

I can have strong emotional pulls. Life may seem very good when things are going in a nice direction. Not so hot when heading the other way. Even if nothing is really going wrong I may have emotions questioning my worth, creativity, am I even loved?. It is good to be aware when those turmoils start churning inside of me. My best response is not to deny them or shame myself in them. Rather, recognize they are there and go to God with them. The wonderful, accepting love of the Father will not judge, condemn or criticize those feelings. As I was honest with Him, I could receive His gentle love. My ears were open to hearing His words to me “I Understand”.

Creatives, spend time with God each day to get His perspective concerning you. The deeper you know Him, your eyes will know creativity in a deeper way. He knows you. He made you. God knows the best way to speak His heart through the art He has given you.

GOD REALLY LOVES ME! GOD REALLY LOVES YO

It was after I spent time being honest with God, in my feelings, my emptiness, my searching, with no expectations that I needed to respond in a certain way to receive His approval, I was able to go back to the bible verse and take in the whole blessing for me.

Sit, RECEIVE, REFLECT AND RESPOND (however your creative genre takes you) to this gift.



Romans 8:28
We are confident that God is able to orchestrate everything to work toward something good and beautiful when we love Him and accept His invitation to live according to His plan.

Taken from THE VOICE

God is protecting me and always walking with me? How do you feel?

BE

FREE

TO’

WORSHIP

AS

YOU

WERE

CREATED!



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God’s Word Vaults

¹That’s how God’s Word vaults across the skies from sunrise to sunset,Melting ice, scorching deserts,warming hearts to faith. – Psalm 19:6 MSG

 

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During this present Lenten season, our church is going through a workbook series as a whole – DOES GOD REALLY LOVE YOU?¹ It is a very intense  walk giving us an opportunity to bring the Word of God into the reality  of  who we are. Can we embrace our true identity?  God is reaching out for intimacy with His children.

Can you answer this question in quiet peace? “Does God Even Like Me?”

When we read the scriptures, and we are quite mandatory about it, the accomplishment can become more of a “to do” activity.  Cross it off your list and get to the next activity for the day.  If you  read in that fashion, it is very difficult to answer the question “Does God Really Love Me”? because the only things brought away from the text are 1. what to do or 2. what not to do.

 Do you remember a time you even read the bible to gain an intimate connection to His love being offered? Was there a sweet aroma, a gentle touch of His acceptance.?

This is a two part fictional adaptation of the WOMAN CAUGHT IN ADULTERY (John 8 1-11) Read slowly. What character attracts you the most? The woman? An observer? An accuser?


The night  was calm and  sweet. Peacefully lying in the strong arms of a man who showed her tenderness, she felt safe. This man seemed — different.   Not like others before with their ugly breath, horrid eyes and single desire.

She longed to be delivered from the gross life previously surrounding her nights. Days no longer existed. Sunlight brought no joy. Shame labelled all  her clothing.

This man came to her secretly, but gently. The past few nights brought a delightful-sens.  Could he actually feel something for her? Did she have more purpose than that of a woman’s body?

                                       Restful sleep came upon her.

  Suddenly!                                  

 Without warning, temple guards crashed into the house. Sun’s rays peeled through the window. Fear consumed her body although she felt he would be near for protection.   She reached over to feel the mat’s other side.

It was empty!

With anxious questions, she thought,   “ Why are the sheets disheveled and the bed  still warm? He was just here.  Where was he?”

Looking around,  no one was in sight to stand between her and these angry, hateful men.

Instinctively she grabbed the bedclothes as she was yanked from the room. In pain and disillusionment, tears running down her cheeks, she faced the self-righteous crowd in the courtyard.

The  hideous mockery swirled in rude contrast to the peaceful quiet night she just experienced. Inside she hoped her lover would still come to her rescue. Glaring rays from the sun. Noise. Confusion.

“Surely he won’t allow the legal punishment to be carried out against me.”

Clutching the sheets  to cover her shame, she was dropped  before the temple leaders. In the mental, emotional, turmoil, she could make out the out the forms of two men.  Her life would be changed forever by the  actions of each.

One of the two men standing in the crowd she recognized from last night.   Will he speak up in her defense? Will he express concern? Will he show the tender care his words and actions gave in the evenings before.? Their eyes met. He quickly turned away.

The chaotic noise  from the crowd slowly faded away.  More agony gripped her as she realized the man who turned his gaze was the son of the Pharisee Leader. Standing next to her loudest accuser was the one she had given her very soul the nights before.

“Please God,  “ she cried silently to heaven, ” if You exist, may the first rock finish me.  The pain in my heart has killed me already. “

“What is taking so long?  Waiting for the discussion is far  worse than the sentence itself.”

 

4“Teacher, this woman was caught in the act of adultery. 5In the Law Moses commanded us to stone such women.Now what do you say?”

                                                                                                    John 8:4 NIV

Who was  this other man?  His eyes were kind. His face was gentle. There was truth all around Him.  He stood and looked at her so differently than any other  man.

“This Teacher can’t come closer to me. He knows what I am. He will become unclean.   Who is He?”

Bending over very quietly, He scribbled in the sand.

The Pharisees continued their pestering questions.  On and On!!  Finally the Man stopped His scribbling. Without anger or malice, He stood up and proposed a simple statement:

“Let any one of you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her”

                                                                                                     John 8:7 NIV

He returned to the ground and his scribbling.

The seconds felt like hours as she shook beneath her cloth protection, waiting for the first rock. The only sounds were the swish of His finger on the sand and the heavy breathing of men.

THUD! THUD! THUD!

Rocks were slowly falling around her. Feet shuffled  away.

Angrily looking around, the Chief Pharisee  watched  the rest of the accusers shake their heads and drop rocks.  Grabbing his robe to keep his cleanliness intact,  the loudest accuser turned to leave the scene. With an angry grunt, and eyes blazing, he demanded his son to follow.

The young man responded. As his eyes met hers, there was no love, no concern, no care. Just a look. Hearing another urgent word  from his father, the son walked.

Left alone, she couldn’t comprehend what took  place?

End  of part one!

 

Do you walk through life in fear and loneliness with the conclusion EVERYONE is out to get you?  This woman’s life was in constant fear. Her life was crippled by the choices she made. Looked for love in all the wrong places. Even when thinking she found it, it was not “well formed love

 

 

 

There is no room 2

 

God’s love does not work in that fashion.

That’s how God’s Word vaults across the skies from sunrise to sunset, Melting ice, scorching deserts,warming hearts to faith. – Psalm 19:6

 

 

 

BE

FREE

TO

WORSHIP

AS

YOU

WERE

CREATED!

1 Reference is to book used by Duluth Vineyard Church https://www.facebook.com/theduluthvineyardchurch/ (Does God Really Love Me?) Vineyard Resourses 2016.


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WILL YOU TRUST ME?

 

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WILL YOU TRUST ME?

This a question most born again Christians want to automatically answer with a resounding:

OF COURSE!

 

A war battling inside and out may cause a tremendous tug on our body, soul  and mind making that inquiry loom to the heights of  Mt. Everest. If you cannot look anyone in the eye for fear of breaking into tears, the isolation takes the mountain and multiplies it many times the size it was before.

 

How often do we even acknowledge this internal agony bearing down inside and around us? If you have read my previous  blogs, you know comparison is a bully, trying to tear down the joy of who I am in Jesus. This ugly cloaked  beast recently uncovered itself and attacked.  The pain was ……
I recently returned from an exciting, challenging road trip with my daughter.  This post deals with the inner war that took place shortly after coming home.  I share  this experience with you for one purpose. To encourage all believers who “walk through the valley of the shadow of  death”.

How did it happen? I can’t say. I can point to words I heard. They pulled at my insides until finally I snapped. It wasn’t just the words though. I started to add “this to that”, “what I do and don’t do”, “what I can and cannot do”

I was in darkness. I saw no future. I felt pain from my past. My birthday coming in a few days simply added to the feelings “I am so useless”.

 

I can point to the main lying phrase which caused my breathing to come in small, short, stints:

“You are not good enough” !

I stayed  in our library,  using box after box of tissues, wondering why I was in such torment. At that point,  I firmly decided I would not be leaving  the house the rest of that weekend,  other than as a silent passenger in the car  Anything else was beyond my capabilities.

I questioned:  Am I going to be this way for the rest of my life?

 

In the midst of this confusion,  I sensed a soft gentle breeze.  God’s presence. Not an “I AM WITH YOU”,  overly loud voice from the scriptures.  Rather a soft whisper, “i am with you and i will never leave you.”
I experienced a respect-filled love from my God, my Papa. I felt His compassionate Presence very close to me. He could have taken my hand,  but I was too bruised to be touched. Every once in awhile, I felt a slight touch which made me aware of His love and presence. The Creator knew my needs.  He was never intrusive, never invasive.

Sunday morning brought a sliver of possibly riding in the car to church.  My husband and son were volunteering for the first service.  Still not wanting to talk to anyone, I would wait in the car til the second service.   My husband left the keys to our car and suggested if I decided I was ready to go at all, I could drive and meet them for the second one.

I did not feel as though God was expecting anything. He was not saying “You can do all things because of who you are in Me.”  Rather the gentle love extended to me was a hand knowing my needs saying:

“I think We can do this. Will you trust me?”

 

I did not feel shame or pushed. I did not feel as though it was something I “should” do. I truly felt the choice was mine. Even though that was the case:

I was not doing this by myself. I did not walk alone.

 

I (We) got behind the wheel. I (We) drove to church. I (We) walked through the doors.

 

Little by little God has taken my hand. I presently see life through a different lens.

The questions, pain and emptiness which erupted over that weekend have not been totally answered or dealt with. 😕  They are just not screaming louder than God’s love for me. Right now I can breathe.

I would like to give you the gift God gave to me. His wonderful love allowed me to walk through the weekend without expectations how I was to perform. I was ugly. I was not pleasant. I needed to be alone. God did not leave me. His touch was unique to my need.

 

We are all very unique. With that in mind, how do now I approach the attack:

   YOU ARE NOT GOOD ENOUGH?

Is that even a statement  to consider?   God gave His Son for me.  In receiving this precious gift, the relation between God and me is totally free to be everything it was meant to be. In Jesus, I am free to love, free to create, free to worship, free to live as God created me to be.

God gently takes my hand into His. We will walk the path where He leads me.

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Reach out  and take God’s hand. Where is He leading you? Will you trust Him?

What can I say

It is not always easy to walk this path, but God is not calling us to walk it alone. He is always with us even when the feelings are not there. Be honest.  If you have questions or comments, come and share them with me. We are on this path together.

Be

Free

To

Worship

As

You

Were

Created!


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DOES GOD LOVE THE GOOD GIRL III?

 

Welcome

Sidney stiffly crawled out of the car. Her legs slowly made it up the long driveway. A huge  front door stood before her.  As Sidney reached for the wooden knocker, her eyes went to a blue metallic WELCOME sign.

“Had this sign always been here?” Sidney wondered, ” Possibly. It was never  a part of my life. Not until now. Thank You God. I feel Welcomed.”

Still a bit hesitant, she wondered if she should knock or ring the bell. The answer was made for her as Mother almost knocked her down. The two stood motionless.  Silence.

“Mother,” Sidney broke the quiet with a stammering voice, “I can’t just move back  and live as your daughter. The trust fund is gone. I did horrid things. Please forgive me. Would you allow me to  live in the servant’s house? I could work as a maid or something. Anything to be close to home, close to you. ”

Words poured out through tears .

Mother looked straight into Sidney’s eyes. “You’ve  never left my heart my daughter.”

From the second story window Sara saw these two in their encounter. ” Well, isn’t this pretty? It won’t last long. I’ll be here to pick up the pieces, as always. That other daughter will  cause pain and leave. For now, I will  just be quiet and do what makes everyone smile.”

That’s what made people glad Sara was around. Why  was Sara not happy she was around?

“I’m going for a walk around the lake. Yeah, as if anyone cared.” Sara kept negative thoughts to herself. A Good Girl never dares to speak them out loud. If the words aren’t heard, maybe they don’t really exist?

As Sara  pulled the door shut,  she saw the blue metallic WELCOME sign. This same sign she saw every day she entered and left the house. Welcome

“Had this sign always been here?” Sara wondered. “Possibly. It was never a part of my life.”

Turning, Sara walked down the stairs to the lake.

 

Weeks went into planning a huge, festive return party for Sidney.  The house became joyful. A celebration like none the neighborhood had seen before. Everyone around the lake was invited.

The invitations didn’t stop there. Sidney’s painful experience in the city brought a keen awareness to the abuse felt by the women in the shelter. She extended invitations to these women feeling safe enough t0 venture to Sidney’s home.

Sidney recognized the love and grace God extended to her as one so very undeserving. With the love she received, she wanted to share.

Sara wanted to yank down every streamer. The “Good Girl” inside kept those actions at bay.  Sara was very cool concerning all the party  preparations. The regular activities of the household, needed  continue. Sara gladly busied herself with those mundane jobs.

“This is a big show. The party will eventually come to a close. Money will be GONE. I will be left handling all the loose ends. In fact,  I will probably need to  be in charge of cleaning up after the thing is over. It will make people smile. It will make people glade for Servant Sara.” Sara  kept these thoughts to herself.

The day of the party arrived. The sun was shining. The day was beautiful.  Mother and Sidney were on the front lawn. Arm in arm, they walked around greeting the guests.

Sara stood glaring from the same second story window. “This makes me sick. Walking around, new clothes, smiling as though they are the best of friends. How can that daughter do something so full of lies? WRONG.”  Each word came out with a spit.

“God ,” this was not said in a gentle tone. Rather one demanding rights.”I have been obedient. I do all the right things You ask and Mother asks. This is not fare. This is not just.”

Dialing Mother’s cell phone, Sara leaves a text to meet her in the den . Please come in one half hour .

Sara asks a simple table of coffee and biscuits be prepared. No need to be rude. Sara sat  in the den waiting .

Mother opens the sliding door a little past the half hour but not much. Her face flushed with excitement from the party. Seeing Sara’s face, she knows  it is time.

“Please take a seat Mother. We need to talk. I’m afraid two very important things are amiss here.  One, this daughter of yours has been very rude. To the family name, to herself, to the money. Not to mention to you.  I’m fearful for you.  She’s  going to use you up again, leave and, well  you know I’ll be here to pick up the pieces”

These word come out out short and terse. There was no care or fondness left in Sara. .

“With all the evil she did, you throw a huge party for her. I have been here, taking care of you, doing EVERYTHING I am called to do. EVERYTHING!!! And more.”

Now the words are more deliberate with just a hint of the pain.

“What do I get in return? Nothing. Not even  a movie night with a few of my friends.”

Mother slowly rose and brought her chair close to Sara. Sara’s body stiffened. Reaching her arm around Sara, Mother knows this will be a long hard battle for Sara. Just as the wild girl was a safe way to cover the pain for Sidney, the good girl is a safe way to cover the pain for Sara.

At the end of the prodigal story, the father told the older son:

                        You’re with me all the time, and everything that is mine is yours(Luke 15 31 MSG)

Mother had first hand knowledge concerning the grace God poured out so  willing on all wounds and pain. Until both girls were willing to drop the covers and receive that love, they would use whatever tools necessary to cover their pain, to live, to survive.

The story is finished, but is the story finished? It is hard  for Sara to know she is loved. God Loves the Good Girl. Does the Good Girl know she is love by God?

Thoughts, questions, comments,  We are on this journey together.  🙂


I need to acknowledge again my gratitude to emily p. freeman and her book : grace for the GOOD GIRL.  It gave me ideas to be able to write this short story.


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Does God Love the Good Girl?

Very odd question?

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These photos have their own unique qualities.

The top ones- peaceful, calm, tranquil.

The bottom ones – exciting , dangerous, vigorous.

Which one has a greater appeal to you? There is no right or wrong answer. It is what it is.

The photos might represent our stories as well.

Peaceful,tranquil, no waves, (obedient).

Wild, crazy, crashing (disobedient).

Both stories can be very lonely. The WILD story may come to the realization she is in deep need of love. Her crazy life is dynamically  filled with loose threads attached to nowhere. Her emptiness causes a realization. It is the need to search for a true love which will meet her every want. She recognizes the reality of God’s grace as she runs into His arms.

The TRANQUIL story has a deep unknown need, even to herself. It has no label until it is made known to her. Her need is just as deep as one in the WILD story.

Following is a slightly adjusted modern day parable of the Prodigal Son. With whom do you best identify?

A single mother with two daughters.  Father passed away  years ago. Mother comes from a prestigious law firm family who gladly welcomed her back to her per-marital position.  Finances were no problem. Mother loved her daughters very much. Work never comes before the needs of her girls though.  She is a good example of love, strength, peace joy.

Sara the elder daughter is the “good girl”. When her father died, she had many questions. She had deep pain. Sara saw her mother cry. As Sara put her arm around Mother, it brought comfort, made Mother feel better.  So instead of talking about her own pain, Sara would listen. Sara would do the household jobs asked of her the first time. That would bring smiles from everyone.  This covered  over questions, pain inside Sara.  Value came by listening and receiving the “good girl” smiles from everyone. Everyone except the person in the mirror.

Sidney is the youngest daughter. Her wild side made people know she was not happy when her father died. She cried long and hard. Who cared if her jobs got done? Mother had long talks with Sidney about life – drugs, smoking , boys and sex. (the consequences on your body , heart and soul when you act as if you don’t care). Sidney didn’t care. The pain in her heart was deep. She was going to cover it somehow. Besides, these things were fun.

Sara and Sidney knew their father  set aside  money in a trust fund.  This was to help pay for continuing higher education or starting a business. The money was to be withdrawn for that specific need and age. Not before.

As a “good girl” wanting to please, this was fine with Sara. Not the one to make waves because it always made people smile Sara went along with this choice for her life. She lived at  home. Classes were taken at the state university. Upon finishing her B.A., Sara  pursued pre- law. Did she really want to be a lawyer?  It made her mom smile  with the news.   Every one around Sara said she was a good listener.

Sidney barely finished high school. After one year at the local technical school, taking a few business classes,  she said “FORGET THIS MESS.”  Sidney went to Mother and demanded her trust fund half.   No way was she going to stay in this town.  It is too boring.

In pain, Mother went to the bank. With open hands, and open heart, she gave the funds over to Sidney. Sidney’s present boyfriend was in the car. Without even a kiss goodbye, Sidney drove off.

Sara looked out the second story window watching the car tear down the driveway. She c0uld hear the laughter sailing from the top down convertible.  Two care free people sailing off to their adventure.  Sadness crossed Sara’s mind. A very small seed  entered her heart. This seed was so tiny, Sara would not dare to claim it existed. It would put a crimp on her “good girl ” label. The seed was a combination of two deadly sins to a “good girl’s” life. Envy and bitterness.

Sara did not allow  any recognition of these feelings. Instead, her primary thoughts, her need was to seek out Mother. How could  Sara comfort Mother?  Sara would do  what “good girls ” always do. Forget they feel inside  to meet the needs of others.

This is part one of the story.  Sidney goes out to have fun. Sara stays. Both make choices.  Who do you identify with?

The tranquil waters are obedient. But REALLY?

Is she any different than the raging waters?

Have either one yet come to terms with their father’s death?

Can you identify at all with Sara? What is she lacking?

Feel free to leave comments or questions.


Ideas were taken from grace for the GOOD GIRL by Emily P. Freeman. Thank you so much

 

 

 

 


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Comparison Stumps Obediance

Comparison is an ugly trap when fed. It can strangle the life from a wonderful blessing. It doesn’t matter whether the comparison is done by you or by others. It creates a death hold on beauty.

In the previous blogs, Leah sees her ugliness. A comparison between her and the beautiful sister Rachel lead Labon to deceive Jacob. Leah deals with pain.

Does comparison stump you from delighting  in life?
Continue reading


The Wall

A story can reveal the inner thoughts of a person. The one reading the story if she will takes the time to allow the words to sink in. The writer of the story,  if she is true and allows honesty to flow out.  This is the case set before you. The new year is almost three weeks old. The excitement of resolutions, a new adventure in a new year may still be running strong. In a short while, it is possible you will run smack dab into an unexpected hard WALL, as you are engaged in the wonder around you. You hit your nose very hard. How will you respond? Is the adventure still there?  Are you excited about the walk? Do you complain about the WALL?  Follow PAN in her path.
PAN welcomes this walk, this new adventure. The steps are not too challenging, just enough to make it exciting. The adrenaline begins to flow throughout her body. Looking around, PAN takes in  sights and beauty never seen before. The sounds are unbelievable as if she enters another world.  Deep blue rushing waters, rock formations expressing a special type of awesomeness all their own.  Green leafy trees reaching to the sky with praise.

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The most thrilling part of all is talking with the Creator. PAN cannot believe anything could be more overwhelming.
Suddenly a brick wall smashes with PAN’s nose.

” OUCH,”  PAN,  yelled as she jumped back with surprise.” Where did this brick wall come from? I thought I was watching where I was going. Bam  this thing comes out of nowhere.”
As PAN continues rubbing  her very bruised nose, tears begin to form. Looking towards the sky, Pan has a verbal conversation with the One who moments earlier caused her Joy and Delight.

Rather defiantly Pan says, “ I thought you were all knowing. Didn’t You see the WALL? It surely is big enough. Why did you lead me down this path? You made me run right into a huge WALL. Now my poor nose is very painful. Not very protective of You!!!”

 

Dark Branches
The area grows dark. The sun’s rays seem to fade with each word of protest, each complaint coming out of PAN’s mouth. The wonderful excursion  suddenly turned sour. The joyful give and take between PAN and the One she trusted is slowly becoming bitter.
“ The words initially drawing me to You promised protection. Wasn’t there something about ‘ Leading me by still waters,?’ and ‘ Peace that passes understanding?’  Instead, You lead me right into a brick wall letting me hit my nose, causing pain. Plus, I have no peace. I am frustrated because there is no way going forward through this. “ An angry body points to the stony barrier.
These are viscous words verbalized. Inside her mind, Pan has what she thinks is a private   conversation with herself. She figures God cannot or will not go into this secret area.  Her  true feelings of fear, rejection and despair are exposed. In PAN’s former life, these types of conversations were common.
Shaking her head, talking  herself again into a  false sense of bravery  PAN thinks,‘ I guess I need to figure out how to do this myself. He does not really care. Nobody cares. Not really.  Who was I trying to fool? Nice adventure at the start, but I knew it was too good to be true. This is my life. Always was. Always will be.”

With a dejected shrug, PAN resolved to figure something out.
Although the bright sunshine had never really left the sky, The darkness was larger,always covering PAN. She was  becoming,  more fretful and anxious.  The  Wall seemed to drain PAN’s inner joy, peace and contentment  from her very soul. PAN was feeling helpless  and  out of control.
Realizing she could not handle these circumstances any longer on her own Pan started another conversation with God. PAN’s  attitude was far from gracious.
“God’, PAN begins in a less than humble tone walking around with her hands going up and down, ‘I read Your book! I know what it says You can do. Why aren’t You doing it?” : A childish, temper tantrum is forming.
“You are all powerful. You called me on this journey. THIS ADVENTURE.  Part these bricks like You did the Red Sea.”PAN spouts the words as spoiled child having a temper tantrum. ” Make a way for me to walk through the bricks. I know I am not being chased by Pharaoh, but I have been here FOREVER. You are in the business of miracles, right? Let’s see something happen!!! “
With each uttered word the cloud overhead became darker and heavier.Dark night
God is ever patient. God is extremely kind. He is slow to anger. He knows the desires of our heart. He knows our needs.

A fight inside and out is wearing PAN thin. The soul  initially crying  out to God in need for His connection is crying out now in need of food, in need of water, in need of love.

The Holy Spirit is tenderly wooing PAN.
Through gritted teeth,  but less anger,  PAN looked upward again. ”  OK, I recognize this is not going to be easy, but I cannot go forward  on my own. I am stuck on this side. What am I going to do?”
The cloud seemed to lose a bit of its heaviness. The sky was not quite as dark.  The bright sunshine and blue sky was still hidden.
PAN’s  eyes went to the wall again where she saw a blackish shadow.  Was it always there?  Was it alive? Was it part of the WALL?
Very hesitantly PAN walked over to the shadow. Realizing the blackish thing was lifeless, she bent to examine it. This was a huge sloppy bag.
Lifting the old bag was impossible. Grabbing the zipper foot, PAN hoped to see a sledgehammer in the bag.
The zipper was long across the whole bag. Slowly pulling the back opening, PAN saw two strange items inside: a very heavy rope and a strange looking hook.

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Pulling her head back in dismay, PAN  holds up her hands asks, “What the heck am I to do with these? Are you kidding? “

PAN’s tone lost the adventure it held at the beginning of her walk. Scared and defensive are her true feelings.
For the first time, since PAN hit her nose, she decides to  seriously examine the Wall. Although large and wide these were two thoughts. Going around is impossible Going over would be difficult, but doable.
Something else was apparent. Others had been here before. Marks were on the wall looking like indentations.  Had someone been here before?
“HMMM. Interesting , “ PAN observed rubbing her chin .
“Oh My GOSH!!!” This is heavy!!! “ Grunted PAN as she first grabbed the rope.  PAN lost her balance not  expecting the weight.

Standing again, PAN calmed herself, grabbed the rope and swung the rope. The rope was many inches thick. The hook was very heavy. The hook moved high and  hit the wall with a horrible thud. Sadly, it  came nowhere near the top.
In desperation, PAN stretched her arms. Trying to remember yoga stretches and calisthenics, PAN did a few to limber her body to better swing the heavy rope and hook.
“I am just a bit out of shape. Just a little warm up. That’s all. I will get it this time. No problem.”
Over and over and over her head the rope went. Away it flew. Thud against the side of the wall the hook collided.
‘ARRGH”
“THIS CANNOT BE SO HARD. Are there gloves in the bag? Maybe I am letting go too soon. Let me check”

Looking into the huge bag, another sigh of disappointment rose.  No gloves.
PAN remembers from past movies and true life stories, the sheer rush of adrenaline in times of desperation will cause fantastic amounts of excess strength beyond normalcy.

“That’s what I need. A sheer rush of adrenaline to put that hook on top. I could not be any more desperate.  I will mentally  give myself a rush flowing to the  rope to fly high enough to make the hook  fasten on top. That’s it. Calm PAN. Think it. It Will Happen”

PAN felt very relaxed as she walked over to the heavy rope and hook. With every muscle in her body she hurls the rope, but to no avail. One tip catches the top, but is not enough to stay the entire  hook. As PAN yanks the rope to test its strength, the total hook comes loose falling to the ground.
As the rope falls to the ground PAN falls to the ground in utter despondency.
“God”, the tone of a child recognizing her complete need, a repentant child longing to sit on her Papa’s lap, “I cannot do this”.
A tender “I know”,is the response. These words are not ones of rejection, shame or anger. “Take the rope again.”
With this tender encouragement, PAN receives strength from the One She Can Trust. Going beyond the doubt in  her own strength, PAN takes the rope one more time. Moving to the place of the three previous failed attempts, PAN expresses in gracious tones to the One Who is in Control, “Please Papa, Be My Strength”.
PAN closes her eyes. The huge rope is swung three or four times. PAN lets the rope fly with the hook aiming to the top of the wall.  Instead of a dull thud, PAN heard a different noise. A loud clink, possibly something caught. Scared to believe this truly happened, but needing to trust, PAN went closer to the Wall. With hopeful wide eyes, PAN examined the rope. It was hanging straight down. PAN grinned.
“God. I am afraid to pull it to see if it will hold my weight. I rejected the times to hear You. I did not want to take the time to listen to your voice. I am sorry. Please forgive me.”

PAN gave the rope a very strong tug. The hook did not come lose. It would hold. PAN felt giddy. She grabbed the rope. Slowly hand over hand; she placed her feet where  others ascended  before. The climb was slow, difficult and challenging.  PAN was not climbing on her own strength.
As PAN scaled the wall, the cloud was slowly vanishing.

IMG_2858  Healthy conversations between God and PAN are now taking place instead of childish accusations and complaints.
Upon reaching the top of the wall, God asked PAN to throw the hook back down the first side.
A slight fear crept into PAN. “How do I get down?  I have to pull the rope up and then put it to the other side to climb down. Do You see how high this Wall is?  I can’t jump.”
God is so patient. He lovingly shakes His head.  Gently He leads PAN to  another grappling hook and rope. God describes this second side set up is for the people who climbed the Wall and are ready for the next step in their journey.
“God, is this the same journey for everyone? I thought I was on a special path with You. “
“My Daughter, I know the exciting journey for you in My Kingdom. You are unique. Your response is truly yours. Many will walk similar paths, but no one will have  your  exact same journey with Me. The Wall was hard. It is part of the adventure.”
PAN was confused as she slowly descended the wall.
As PAN’s feet hit the ground, she broke into tears. “I was terrible. I was a brat. I was childish. I was controlling. I did not trust you.  How can you want me to continue on this Adventure?”
Nodding His head, God was very kindhearted in His response. “Yes, you were my Child. The Wall is a slice of the journey. It is  here  to disclose the negative portions in your heart. Those negative portions will keep you from enjoying the deeper realms of the Adventure in My Kingdom.  You allowed me to expose and release you from those portions.
“My Joy is you saying Yes to Me , PAN. There will be other challenges. I will never leave you. Nor forsake you. Come, Take My Hand. Lets Continue.”IMG_0362

 

God never leaves. In times of desperation and silence, in times of unpredictable challenges, how do you respond?  Even Job in the Old Testament when he felt completely abandoned by God in his peril, Job was not alone.

Take His Hand.