Are you starting to get your land legs back? Finding the shaking in the knees starting to stop? What about the feeling in the pit of your stomach that overwhelmed you during that storm? There you were, shaking to the core, holding on to the wheel of your ship, and trying desperately to keep it on course. You gave the battle to God, and He calmed those storms. You’ve safely made it back to shore, but you are scarred, bruised, and have been tossed around. Your mind is shaken, and your body worn. Now what do you do?
So many of us reach the end of a storm, and yes, we rejoice that God carried us through…but do you truly thank God for the journey? Have you learned anything from that journey? We found in Philippians 4:4 that we were supposed to rejoice in any circumstance. Why? Because in all things the Lord in near. He removed the anxiety, the worry, and fear of not being able to take another step. He calmed the stormy seas, and provided us with peace that transcends all understanding. Beautiful, amazing, indescribable, and I pray, uncontainable peace. Remember? Y’all think we are finished don’t you? Nope! There is more.
Philippians 4:8-9 says, “Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.” So what does all of this mean y’all? It means that we should have learned something directly from God during this storm, and then, we need to put it into practice. Sounds easy enough right? Of dear Sister, I wish that were the case.
I chatted with my dear Sister today as we discussed the new year, and our new words God gave us to live by. This has become an annual tradition for us and we share the goodness of our Lord, and all that He has shown us. Each year we’ve grown a little older, and I’d like to think, a little wiser. We realized this year some things that I wish I had seen when I was younger. We face these storms y’all. We ride the waves and survive the battles, and then we scoop up our broken, wounded bodies from the messy floor. We wipe ourselves off, and make our outer shell of our person look pretty again. Hair, make-up, cute clothes, and sassy shoes adorn our bodies. We look “normal” again…whatever normal may be. Oh, but dear Sister, deep down inside, we are still raw…wounded, hurt, and needing to heal.
We may have followed the direction, “Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me – put into practice.” Dear Sister, the part that we often leave out is allowing “…the God of peace…” to be with us. Deep down inside, that wound may still be raw. It may be tender to the touch, rubbed raw from continually being swiped against as we try to cover it up, or push it aside. Experiences, emotions, sleepless nights, and anxiety filled days often still plague us. Sometimes, we try to stop the craziness that keeps running amuck in our minds and our sprits. Sometimes we allow God to come in and begin to heal that wound. We give the experience to Him, we give Him the glory, and embrace with lovely and the admirable, and the praiseworthy that came from the experience…but y’all, we never let God’s peace wash over us. Dear Sister, we can’t heal without the peace.
That wound keeps trying to heal. God keeps trying to provide you peace that transcends all understanding, and then you and I…we keep picking the scab off of the wound. We lack peace. Sometimes we pull at the stitches by tugging at our soul as we relive bits and pieces of the storm. Sometimes, we all out pick that scab right off of that wound, and find ourselves reliving with storm, rehashing the terrors, and the shaking experiences. Sometimes we find ourselves reliving the world caving in around us because we have never allowed God to bless us with peace. Oh, and then y’all, we start to hold our pain against other people. Yes dear Sister, we begin the “blame game”, and make our hurts other peoples fault when we really…lack God’s peace.
The blame game comes from a place of pain. It comes from continuing to live the storm over and over in different ways. It comes from pulling at that wound and picking the scab off of the top. That poor, bleeding, tender wound never has a chance to heal and become a scar. We never give God the chance to wash His life changing peace over us. It’s this that causes us to struggle with healing. Lack of peace.
Have you punished others for your wounds dear Sister? Have you held grudges against folks who really never did anything to hurt you…nothing other than accidentally brush against that wound you never allowed God to heal. It’s at that time that we must think about “…whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy…: It’s then that we must make the conscious effort to put that joy in place…that lovely, admirable, praiseworthy lesson in place…andthe God of peace will be with you.
Oh dear Sister, I too struggle with letting the God of peace heal my wounds, and claim my scars as beautiful, praiseworthy experiences that show His amazing grace and mercy. I too have wasted years continually pulling at my scabs. Oh but Sweet One, I’ve found that when we…when I embrace God’s blessings of calming the storms, healing our wounds, and pouring His peace upon us, there is nothing more exciting than the joy of the lesson that He put in place for us.
Don’t keep picking at that scab y’all, let that wound heal. It will take time. For some of us, wounds can take decades to heal, present company included. But, they will heal if you just let God pour His loving peace over them. I’ve heard many people say, well this message of the Lord is great, but I’m too broken to be healed. I’m too far gone for His grace and mercy. You dear Sister are mistaken. God wants you, He adores you, He desires a relationship with you, and He will heal you. Just come to Him…banged up, broken, wounded, scarred…He is waiting right there for you.