The battle has been long and we fight wounded. We battle grief and slug through the thick fog of worry and pound out hard marriages and all of this on the terrain of an everyday stress-filled life. We battle sins that seem to stick so strong though we keep trying to fling them away sometimes they rebound stronger. And we pray and we battle and we get up the next morning and keep fighting.
And Friend, don’t you get the sense that the battlefield itself is cloudy? We can barely hear our General yelling out the orders. The flag is submerged up there somewhere in smoke and sometimes the yelling and the canon shots are so piercing, we can’t locate His voice at all. Go where? Do what?
And it is into this clanging chaos that we hear a new voice clear:
“Comfort ye. Comfort ye my people.
Speak ye comfortably to Jerusalem and cry unto her that her warfare is accomplished…that her iniquity is pardoned. The Voice of Him that crieth in the wilderness, prepare ye the way of the Lord. Make straight in the desert a highway for our God,” (Isaiah 40:1-3.)
Advent is time to lay down the fight and hold our hands out empty. We cry out for the King to come and then we wait. We hold out before us all the pain and struggle but instead of wrestling with it ourselves, we hold it out for Him to come.
I remember those years when Andrew and I were at battle, right in the thick of the tiny babies crying and the sleeplessness and we hadn’t found our trust yet. And I would lay down on our bed and give up the fight …to Him. The mattress underneath was firm and the ground under was strong and He is the ground of my being and I couldn’t do it anymore…but He could. I would repeat, “You are holding us up. You are holding us up. We are Yours and You are holding us up.”
I waited and laid down, held on and held out my pain. Somehow in holding up my pain and waiting, I made a highway of my heart, the way for the King to come. I could have reached for another chocolate, drowned in another movie, but I would have missed Him coming.
His Presence…comes, his comfort spreads and we haven’t had to search for the fight, for the courage, because He is here.
Yesterday in church we sang, “Wait for the Lord, whose day is near. Wait for the Lord. Be strong take heart,” from Psalm 27:14 over and over until I felt it in my heartbeat.
Beloved. Daughter. Son of the Most High God, your warfare is over. It already has a Victor and He is coming. Be strong, take heart. He is coming.
The “Be Kind” is from Pinterest. All other photography from Deb Howard Photography who is walking this journey to the manger with us.
Dear one. This is 40 Days counting up to His Coming and this is a good time to share with friends, connect on the home page on the right hand side. A simple typed email will guarantee you won’t miss any day of this journey with Deb and I.
(A Confession and an Invitation: I don’t like this virtual screen between us. Some people hide out here hoping to stay shrouded but honestly, I’m the complete opposite. I want to see your eyes, hear your story, sit with a cuppa at the kitchen table. I’ve been a spiritual director for over six years and love being a matchmaker between God and his children, listening, showing the way to healing. I’m going to begin to offer that to you as well. If you are in the Pittsburgh area, we’ll meet in person. If you are anywhere else, we’ll meet on Skype. I also do life coaching about marriage, parenting and dealing with depression and anxiety. Contact me by mtrsummer (at) gmail.com if you’d like to find out more.)