I've been holding off on a blog post lately. Mostly because I've been growing and healing a lot and rarely have the words to convey any of my thoughts or emotions. Sometimes words are too cheap to really express the things you're going through and sometimes moments are so sacred to you that you'd rather just keep them a secret.
God talks a lot about freedom in the Bible, both in the Old and New Testaments. He announces in Isaiah His plan to pronounce good news to the poor, to bind up the broken hearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, to open the prisons to those who are bound, to proclaim the year of His favor and the day of His vengeance. To comfort all who mourn and to give them a beautiful headdress instead of ashes.
Much later in Luke 4 (like, hundreds of years later), Jesus proclaims in the synagogue, "Today this scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing."
These words and promises never meant much to me until I recently had a dramatic illumination that I am a severely damaged and wicked person and there is a lot in my life that I need to be freed and healed from. When I seemed to have lost everything, that's when my heart began really opening up to the Lord. That's when I came back to life. It's crazy how dangerous studying the Bible for knowledge's sake can be. I've always been interested in context and historical significance when it came to the characters, places and scenarios throughout Scripture. When my life "fell apart", however; I began reading the Bible in a very different way. When I became desperate to hear His voice and feel His presence again, Scripture became sweet to me. He let me hear Him and feel Him. I became more satisfied with just being fed than becoming more theologically sound. Being freed from just that alone feels incredible. (I don't want to downplay the importance of knowing context and historical significance. It's always a very good and valuable thing, it just isn't why I read anymore.)
Something that has been most sweet to me lately within the above passage (taken from Isaiah 61) is the part about God binding up the broken hearted. I'm a woman and most times, we don't take break ups very lightly. From my experience, they're one of the worst and most nagging emotional experiences to go through. There have been times when I have laid in my bed crying, begging God to take away all of my hurt. Though He has definitely done a lot of healing in my heart and has been making it easier and easier for me to move on, I'm still feeling pain, I'm still not fully healed and as hard as that is sometimes, I'm thankful for it.
I guess that sounds a little weird, but think about your best friend. Think about what drew the two of you so closely together. It isn't just because they're so wonderful and fun. If it were just that, you'd probably get pretty bored with your friendship quicker than you'd expect. People grow close to one another when they experience things with each other, typically things that aren't easy. The same thing goes for our relationships with Christ. When my life completely fell apart and when everything that I (so very unhealthily) valued was taken away from me, I finally let Christ be who He wanted to be for me, and that is where my falling in love with Him has finally started to bloom. That is where my healing has begun.
I know that some of you reading this blog may not think very fondly of God. I know that some of you may have a lot of angst in your hearts towards the Church, towards Jesus, but I really, really want you to know that God is not who you think He is. He certainly isn't who I have always thought He was. There is no amount of knowledge of the Bible that can ever amount to really experiencing Him or seeing His Word come to life. There is no box that you can ever put Him in that He will fit. There is no number of hateful church sermons, no belligerent group of Christians that can ever take away God's goodness. He is good and in the purest sense of the word imaginable. When you taste and see His goodness, when you experience who He is and what He is like, that's where you will really find rest. That is when you will finally be satisfied. Being with Him is what will give you fullness. He is who we need in order to be complete. To be who we really are. He doesn't want to take anything away from you in order to harm you. He doesn't want to be wrathful or mean to you. He doesn't want you to be perfect before you seek Him. He wants you now. He wants to take your mistakes, your wounds, your darkest moments and turn them into something beautiful beyond anything you can ever imagine. He really wants to melt your heart with His passion for you. Don't let anything rob you of that experience.
I'm not writing this in order to condemn. I'm writing this because I'm someone who is really freaking broken, who has been stripped of everything that she loved because of God's deep and passionate jealousy and I have finally experienced His love for me. I know that He wants you to know Him for who He really is too. He wants to bring all of us to life and wants to show us who we really are.
He is real. More real than anything you've ever experienced.
He is so kind and so patient. I promise He is good. I freaking promise.