I am sitting in my favorite Starbucks tapping away on the marble covered keys of my laptop. Later today, I will stand before however many hundred people, being one of the congregation chosen to deliver one of what is called "The Seven Last Words", or the utterances of Jesus from the cross. I feel
I don't know if it is just the season of my life or the fact that it is Good Friday and I am about to share my testimony, but I am feeling very reflective.
There was a time, a very short while ago, when I would have rather have dug a hole and hid than stand up in a large room with a large crowd and say anything. Even now, the occasional nervous energy arises. I feel it in my veins like my own heartbeat.
But then something else takes over; a calm I cannot explain, a stillness I cannot muster up on my own. It washes over me like gentle warm waves on the beach, each one reassuring me more. And I am steadied, even in the uncertainty.
Something has happened to me. I was reminded of so much in this process, so much of myself that not too long ago, I would have considered lost. I have reclaimed those last little bits of myself I gave up too easily long ago through preparation to speak in from of my church family.
Yeah, I finally think I have reclaimed them all. And I feel so free.
Though this process, I had to remember my own life's mile markers, that I have done this before, that I was built for this. And, more importantly, that He will be with me.
I am reminded of my life verse from Isaiah 43:1-2
But now, this is what the Lord says—
he who created you, Jacob,
he who formed you, Israel:
“Do not fear, for I have redeemed you;
I have summoned you by name; you are mine.
2 When you pass through the waters,
I will be with you;
and when you pass through the rivers,
they will not sweep over you.
When you walk through the fire,
you will not be burned;
the flames will not set you ablaze.
God and I have gone through some things.
He and I have a history that is etched into my very marrow. He has redeemed me. He has called me by name, His own. We have passed through our own rivers together, and not one has overtaken me. We have gone through our fires together, and danced in the flames. He has moved me from believing to knowing in so many different ways. I have my own faith, my own experiential faith.
And, now, I can look at my life, where it hurt, where I ached, where I felt lost, and I can see His hand, lovingly guiding me the whole time. He has never left. He has always been there. And now, I trust Him so much more.
I am excited for tonight.
I am excited to see God work. I have a solid body of evidence of how He can and does work. My own body is testament of that. My life echoes the transformative and restorative power of God, the redemptive power of Jesus, and the sweet and guiding leadings of the Holy Spirit.
I don't know everything that will happen today, but I know that I trust Him.
I ask all of you, my readers and my friends, those who just discovered this little blog, and especially those who have been walking with me through this journey of reclamation, please pray for me and for tonight.
It is a very Good Friday indeed.