Sunday, March 2, 2014

He restores my soul



Duane Scott of Scribing the Journey recently wrote on his Facebook page, "The hardest part of writing is penning the first sentence. From there on, it’s a wild and dangerous fight to the end." Sharing his quote sounded like a wonderful way to begin this post when I have no idea how to begin.

I’m sitting at Panera Bread eating a chicken and avocado salad (which is way too big, by the way) and drinking a much needed vanilla latte. I come here to get away from the quietness of my home. I desperately miss my husband. I miss him so much it hurts.

It’s snowing again. It looks beautiful but it feels like added weight I can no longer carry.

A book by Max Lucado, Safe in the Shepherds Arms, sits in front of me. The introduction begins with the words, "Come to me." Lucado shares the words from Matthew 11:28 and then writes,

"If we let him, God will lighten our load, but how do we let him?"

He invites and old friend to show us – the Twenty-third Psalm. This book by Lucado is Hope and Encouragement from Psalm 23.

I find it ironic my husband would send this book home. It was included in a package he mailed home to free up needed space in his small living quarters. It upset me when I first saw the book in his box of stuff. I worry about him being drawn away from God while he's away even though he has not given me a reason to worry. Maybe God knew I needed the book more than my husband.

The introduction of the book includes the words from Psalm 23. They are familiar words even though I’m a somewhat new Christian. As Lucado writes, "Do more beloved words exist?"

I arrive at the words ‘He restores my soul.’

As I watch the snow come down at a faster speed my brain tells me I should make my way home – my heart says, God, restore my soul.

We need a God "who, while so mind-numbingly might, can come in the soft of night and touch you with the tenderness of April snow. You need Yahweh. And, according to David, you have one. He is your Shepherd."

I’m trying hard to hold back the tears. I've done my share of crying over the weekend. The tears have been rather uncontrollable. Loneliness consumes me. I feel ill-equipped to handle the curve balls being thrown my way. I want God to make it all stop but that is not what he promises. But He promises to lead me out.

"Your shepherd knows that you were not made for this place. He knows you are not equipped for this place. So he has come to guide you out. He has come to restore your soul..."

I don’t doubt my Shepherd will come to lead me out. He always comes. It may not always be in the soft of night but He comes. Most times He comes when I take this pen and write the first sentence that was so hard to write. When I write I find Him. I never really lost Him; I only took my eyes off of Him.

These tears may fall but they remind me to lift my eyes up to the sky and ask Him to give my weary soul strength. As I look up with my eyes focused on Him I’m captivated. I’m captivated by all He is – beyond anything I will ever fully understand.

"Captivate us, Lord Jesus
Set our eyes on You
Devastate us with Your presence
Falling down
And rushing river, draw us nearer
Holy fountain consume us with You
Captivate us Lord Jesus, with You"
~ Captivate Us, by Watermark

These tears may continue to fall but they draw me closer and closer to Him. So fall if they must because all I want – everything I need – is Him. He is the one who restores my soul.

31 comments :

  1. Oh dear one, He definitely will restore your soul. And sometimes He does that through friends! Lean into Him, but lean on us as well. Thinking of you and praying for you on this Lord's Day. May your worship of Him today restore your soul! Love you.

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    1. Thank you so much, Holly. Yes, He often uses friends. I'm so grateful that He has placed you in my life. Love you. <3

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  2. You have been such an encouragement to me as I've started this blogging journey. God is growing me by putting specific people in my path to pray for and you are now one of them! Praying specific prayers for you based on your post today!

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    1. Thank you, LeeAnn. I'm so glad God has connected us in this blogging world. I'm truly enjoying getting to know you. Thank you for your prayers. {hugs}

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  3. Beth - Praying for you. This morning I read Psalm 23, MSG - "True to your work, you let me catch my breath." "You revive my drooping head," Praying that He would give you exactly what you need today so that you can catch your breath & lift your head. It is then you will see Him & all that He has for you this very day. Love,
    Joanne

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    1. Oh how I love that, Joanne. Thank you so much for sharing. You may see that used on my Facebook page soon. :) I'm grateful for your friendship.
      Love you.

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  4. May the Lover of your soul captivate you deeply, dear Beth ... and may His deepest comfort be your consolation and oh-so-secure lifeline while your man is away.

    You remind us what we need to understand. That there is a sacrifice to our freedom. And you are living it out day by day. I thank you. And send a big hug your way today ...

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    1. I may say this often, Linda, but your comments are always such a blessing to me. THANK YOU.
      Love you,
      Beth

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  5. I'm so sorry for your pain, Beth. And thankful. Thankful because through the words you choose to share here, I can see Him. When God is glorified through our pain, through our weaknesses - great and wonderful things happen. Blessings abound. I know that Truth is difficult for us to understand, but I have seen it proven out in my life. You will see it proven out in yours, I am so grateful for the sacrifice you and your husband are making - for me and my family. Bless you, Beth, and may God bless and protect your husband.

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    1. Thank you, June. Your comment reallmy meant alot to me because while my words reflect how my heart hurts, I also want them to reflect my trust in God. He is using it all to draw me closer and closer to him. Thank you for your love and kindness. You are a blessing.
      Much love,
      Beth

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  6. Oh Beth, know that I hold you close to my heart and am praying for you. Although our journeys are different I too am seeking the Shepherd in my own life. The emptiness I feel, that you feel, is just the pull that we must draw closer. It's that sacrifice praise, that setting our face as flint, that not being moved, no matter how we feel. Know that I am here for you. I wish that I could scoop you up and hug you and tell you how much you are loved.

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    1. Thank you, Barbie. I'm really praying for that day we can share a cup of coffee. Grateful for you.

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  7. I am lifting you and your hero up to our Father, right this minute. Sending you loads of heart hugs. Love you so much. <3

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    1. Your hugs are always felt. Thank you, Shelly.

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  8. Dearest Beth, You're in my prayers as well as your husband ... God's arms are around you and around him - There is a song on my blog today that has encouraged me in the moments of despair when there was hard to see an end to the strugless ... Warm hug to you!

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    1. I need to head over and listen to the song you've referred to. :) Thanks, Nina.

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  9. This is beautiful, Beth! Thank you for sharing your heart with us. I know this is so hard to spend this time away from your husband, but looking to God is so wise! I love the book, "Safe in the Shepherd's Arms," and have a copy on my shelf. It has been a huge encouragement to me during several times in my life! I'm encouraged to go get it out again! :-) I'm praying for you to feel God's comforting hand upon you while He restores your soul.

    Love, Joan

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    1. It's a beautiful book, isn't it? I'm so glad my husband sent home, even though at first I was disappointed. Love how God works.
      Love you,
      Beth

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  10. I'm grateful that you have so many dear friends who are reach out to you and touching your heart. I know you have MANY... BUT if you ever need to just unload, you can holler at me any time. I've known much in the world for many years. And it truly was a blessing to meet you just those few weeks ago...if you're ever going through here again, let me know. Bless you!!

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    1. Thank you, Joanne. You are so kind and I do hope our paths cross again soon. It was such a pleasure meeting you. God bless you.

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  11. Lifting you in prayers. And love you!!!! I'm here if you ever need.

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    1. Thank you, Jenn. Once this weather warms up we need to get together again! Love you.

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  12. You are in my heart and prayers during this time of loneliness and emptiness sweet Beth! ♥ Praying you find comfort in the loving arms of our Father and that you surround yourself with loving friends and family to get you through.

    Blessings sweet friend!! Hugs! ♥
    Denise

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    1. Thank you, Denise, for your prayers.

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  13. Beth,
    My heart aches for how much your heart hurts. This is beautifully written and, as always, comes from your tender heart. Praying for you my friend for God's restoration.
    With love and ((hugs)),
    Bev

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    1. Miss you, Bev. I've been praying for you as well. Much love and (((hugs))).

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  14. You've been on my mind so much lately. These words are beautiful, even though I know they were hard to write. Love you, Beth!

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  15. There is so much to love about this post. I love this verse. I love Max Lucado. I love Paneras (and wish I was there now!). I love that Watermark song, and I love your heart for Him. :)

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Much love to you.