This is the story of “going all in,” giving all to try to make a difference because of the difference He made in us. It is the launch story of our personal life-mission, and the fears, tears, and triumphs that brought us to the culmination of a God-dream.
Was it just some months ago that we stood on the precipice, ready to jump off into His future, His vision, when foreboding crept into our souls? It was. And it is often this way when we stand on the edge of surrender.
We know His voice, after this long love affair where He has wooed and waited and we have flirted and teased.
We have let the warm waves caress us, lap at our toes, refresh us with their nourishment, whisper suggestively to let the waves wash over us, take us fully immersed. Why is the surrender so long-fought? And why, in the moment of hearing when we draw in our breath to yell back eager response, does the knife slice so deeply to steal that breath from us?
For we also are aware of it, that soul enemy, and we know how it lurks, manipulates, deceives, and acts violently out of desperation when we stand on the precipice. Instead of pushing us over the edge (for over the edge of this precipice is wild abandoned grace), this time Fear clings to our souls, dirty talons digging in to keep us from jumping wholeheartedly into the Father’s arms. I see Fear sneering at me as it clings, when all I want to do is drop, drop, drop and fall… into the arms of the Lover of my soul, waves of His perfect will.
The Potter had been birthing this vision for some time, from things so painful to us that they break us, because birthing greatness comes from deep pangs within our core, because giving until it hurts– well, it hurts. Our life-mission came from something placed deep within us, a vision seen through the Father’s eyes. It is this way so often: the things most painful in our past give birth to the greatness of God shining out from within. It is from this pain, the surrender, and the Christ above it all, that we learn not to despise the journey, and we come to accept that His way, while better than life, is beyond our own understanding.
At that moment of surrender, on that precipice, we knew our lives would change. We felt it deeply, hope wild mingled with foreboding, anticipation of joy with expectation of pain. Deliberately, slowly, mechanically, we peeled talon after talon, Fear’s dirty nails…
The scars and pain occasionally still haunt us, remind us, but this is the recounting of our fall into Him, and the tidal waves of His holiness, greatness, love that overwhelmed us, and the beauty left behind when the ocean of grace meets the horizon of hope.
Our dreams, our goals, our life-missions, they come from this, the Son on the water glistening like prismatic diamonds, forged by pressure and illuminated by the cutting away. And so we follow it, that “holy discontent,” over the edge into the waves of His grace, the One who dares to use me because of my weakness and through the empathy it creates.
By Johnna, Sanctuary MinistriesLeave a Comment
Johnna, what beautiful words reflecting your *trust* in Him. Though my heart *knows* all of this, my mind is having a hard time “despising the journey” toward something I believe He’s promised – something that I don’t even want to go through, necessarily, but something that I believe He has such purpose in, though it doesn’t make sense right now.
I appreciate your words today…
Johnna Burns says
In retrospect, I am usually so thankful for the journey… I have often been saddened by the fact that I despised the journey in the moment of occurence, that I did not see the journey for the gift it was and embrace it! That’s the beauty, I think, of knowing and serving a God Who is good, all the time, Who only gives us good gifts. Now if we could realize that in the moment, right?!? Praying for you, that you can realize and trust His promises and purposes for this very moment!
Thanks for your comment.
Holley Gerth says
Yes, He “dares to use us” as you said–may we dare to let Him. Thanks for sharing your heart with us!
Johnna Burns says
Thanks for the opportunity! And let’s all be daring together, okay? What grace and beauty there is in purpose, in being used up and spent for the kingdom!
Johnna, I do appreciate your words. It is difficult for me to throw myself over the edge, too. I am so thankful to my heavenly Father that he continues trying to show me his grace and blessings. I keep on, with the Spirit’s help, to listen and respond as He would have me. Your words are encouraging . Thank You and may He continue to bless you and yours.
Your post resonated so strongly with me today as well. I am being beckoned to the edge but my flesh is fighting. I am fearful as to what I am being asked to relive or revisit. I do not want to go through the pain again. Yet, my hunger and thirst for His will MUST over power my fleshly wants and fears. My heart knows He is in control but my head will try to analyze everything.
Thank you for sharing from your heart and experiences. I questioned myself “Why does surrender have to be so hard?”, “Why am I fighting surrender so hard?”
May we all have strength to surrender!
Johnna Burns says
Thanks for your comment! I have found that sometimes, in reliving and revisiting the painful moments, in using them to accomplish eternal purposes, we see them more clearly, more through God’s eyes instead of our pain– and beauty comes from the ashes. May you see beauty, God’s goodness, come from your journey!
“It is this way so often: the things most painful in our past give birth to the greatness of God shining out from within” ~ this resonates with me so much regarding what God is doing in my life currently, and how I know He wants to use what I’ve been through… and this “the Son on the water glistening like prismatic diamonds, forged by pressure and illuminated by the cutting away” is beautiful. Oh, the wonder of it all!
Johnna Burns says
I think about that very image that God placed in my heart so often– Jesus, forged by incredible pressure, glorfied and illuminated in holiness by what He surrendered and lay down, yes, even His very life… Jesus, walking on the water, the ocean of His grace, calling us to step out, to join Him in the refining process.
And then I think of all the times in my past where crushing, smothering pressure has forged me into someone more Christlike, and when the “cutting away” has made less of myself so that I can more greatly shine, reflect, and illuminate His glory.
May we all surrender to those refining processes, those refining moments, over and over in our lives as He beckons us.
You are right– His way is so very wondrous. Thanks for your words!
Thomas Sabo Australia says
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Katie @ Imperfect People says
What beautiful pictures! I love what you said about why do we fight it so!!?? Great post