Encouraged reading of Romans 8
You know the saying, “I’m all bottled up inside” or the one that says in an argument, “I’m about to blow!” or the one, “You keep everything bottled up.” Do we ever get a glimpse of the “Stay clear!” expression from our co-workers or friends. How about the “She’s about to blow. I’m getting out of here!” from our best friends, husbands, even our children. Shhhh……I don’t have enough fingers to count how many of those I get!
We as women tend to hold all our hurt/pain/stress inside this ‘infamous’ bottle. We haven’t realized how it has become an idol that keeps us from moving forward in the freedom of Christ. We’ve got them all dressed up, decorated so exquisitely. They come in so many shapes and colors. Some even have engravings, glitter, some BLING. All the bells and whistles. Some of us have even crafted these corks (for a lack of a better term) that are so delicate in design that we’ve prided ourselves over our so called ‘infamous bottle’. Of course, we’ve made sure the bottle is of glass so that peering into our past and present can be that much more accessible. Heaven forbid, if we were to open the thing! Can you imagine the fragrance! Whew! It’ll knock out a whole herd of cattle in seconds. It’s like a good wine gone extremely bad!
What we don’t realize is that we’ve hung them on the door post of our hearts with not a notice of the ever increasing growth spurt that is sped by our continually, habitual in pouring. This morning I encourage all of us, including myself, to take the initiative and begin our walk towards freedom. Let’s walk……..
Good Morning my Father, my Love, my Life!
I want you to know I do love you, I do love you! I’m listening to Misty’s song “Vow”. I’m sure I need not speak of it as You are the one who birthed its existence. Peace is spoken to me as the chords are played. I do love you! I do love you! I do love you, Jesus!
You are my light in a dark world, You are my strength when my knees give way, You are the source of joy when it rains upon my world,
You are my life, my peace, my love I know only through you I can live. Only through you can I exist in a place of such uncertainty.
I know the instability in these surroundings are overshadowed by your firm hand. As you reach down to calm the seas within the torrent Winds come strong –
Calm, Yes, calm – As you speak – ALL is still and safe.
All the hurt/pain I’ve kept inside – ‘bottled up’ in this infamous bottle can only keep me further away from freedom. I know it doesn’t keep me ‘away’ from your love but it does determine how free I can feel in your embrace. I know your word says there is no height nor depth that can keep us away from your love. However, walking in your freedom is another measured gift dependent upon my choice, my action. Freedom comes with a choice for change. I choose change for my Today!
No longer will I allow my past or present to keep me from flowing in the freedom of your truth. This bottle I’ve so safely kept close to my bosom, I take and smash it against the foot of the Cross. As the pieces of glass shatter, my tears I’ve held back for so long begin to pour like healing rain over my scars of past, my wounds of present. As I look up I see your blood that was shed to heal my pain. That was shed to free me from my sweet fear, [I say ‘sweet’ because it became my friend and now I’ve let it go]. It is not that I did not want to be free, I just thought that if I held on to my ‘bottle’ long enough that I could undo those hurts. I could undo the words I’ve said, undo the ones spoken over me. That I could see my ‘bottle’ of fear, doubt, rejection, shame, insecurity, hurt, loss, unspoken dreams, broken promises, excused mistakes, bitterness, resentment, unforgiveness and hate. That it would “magically” disappear! That I could somehow, in someway reminisce over the happenings that have hurt me whether caused by others, myself and yes, even the times I’ve believed to be at Your hand.
I mean Lord, I had become so attached to this ‘bottle’ that it began to consume me, leading my heart, my mind in every conversation, every response, every action. That I began to believe that “This is me, This is who I am”. I began to believe a lie. I wanted justice, I wanted revenge, I wanted something to happen, to change so that what I felt could be justified. So, I could say, I was right and the ‘they’ would see it as so.
Yes, magically, magically! I wanted this ‘bottle’, this crutch, this memorial to disappear. BUT!!! Only after I saw that it was what has kept me from moving forward did I know that I was accounted for the mess I laid in front of me. (Thank You, Lord for being the one that cleans up our mess.)I did not realize how much bondage I had placed myself in with the waiting, the agonizing. I know your Word says to lay it at your feet. I know!!! But what good would it do me to be without something that has become such a part of me. That became such a part of who I am today.
You know when I heard you knocking on my hearts’ door, the sound I heard, it wasn’t the normal sound I hear when you’ve come before. I had to take a look and see why the difference. To see, what I saw caused me greater pain then what I’ve held so justly ‘bottled’ up. I saw a glass bottle larger than life! A glass bottle hung with the strongest iron chains an eye can fathom. On the door of my heart, a place where only you have permission to freely walk inside. A glass bottle that I allowed to grow from something so small to something that covered the entirety of my heart’s door. That you no longer could move it to the side to place your gentle knock but had to knock on it’s glass structure. Your knock when placed resounded with a piercing sound that shook my heart to an awakening like none before.
I now know that you’ve been there all long watching me fill this ‘bottle’ and hurting for me. Speaking to me gently, ever so softly that because of your love – freedom for me was only a ‘smashing’ away. I know now what I could not see before. That my ‘bottle’ hurt you more than it did me. Because it kept me from communing with you in a much more intimate way. I know now that I had to be the one to take the initiative, to be the one who wanted the freedom. To take this ‘bottle’ of bondage and smash it at the Cross.
Yes, I’m learning, Romans 8:28, “We are assured and know that [God being a partner in their labor] all things work together and are [fitting into a plan] for good to and for those who love God and are called according to [His] design and purpose.”
Oh My Father, my Love, My life! I realize know that though those seasons in my life came and went; they may have made me stronger but you are the one who was there to aide me in the strength process. All I ask is that you take my heart, my vessel and mold it, sculpt it into what you have envisioned it to be. No more ‘me’ in the way. When the hurt comes again or a new affliction ails me I will look to you and the Cross before I so habitually grab that infamous bottle.
I only have one life to live. Just one live to give. Won’t you let me love you more, to be lovesick for you is to know true freedom.