Warning: Long, a bit erratic and you may not understand
I had a moment.
Time stood still. Just for a few moments, but it seemed like eternity.
I was in my home, but felt removed. I felt like I was watching. God was in my home. He was with me.
I felt that He was literally right beside me.
I felt His presence, no more than that.
I felt His touch. I heard His voice. I could sense His breath.
He was all around me. He was all that was me. He was it.
Everything else was gone, it almost felt like everything else was sand falling through my fingers. The only thing I could grasp, feel, touch was Him.
I was writing a gifts post filled with wonderful, sweet, far from normal little things. Pancakes, roses, smiles. After all, those really are far from normal. What is normal about gifts being poured out on me every second?! Let alone gifts from the Creator of the universe? There is nothing normal about that. I stopped short, even though my mind had a list running, filled with these sweet gifts.
My mind stopped, something, someone stopped me.
I froze. I closed my eyes, feeling like perhaps I had just lost my train of thought.
Then I knew He was telling me to stop.
I opened my eyes. Looked outside.
Closed my eyes. Breathed in deep.
I felt the wind tickling my face and caught the fragrant scent of the blooms on the breeze. My eyes filled with tears.
He had stopped me, held me still so that I would receive this one particular gift He had prepared for me.
That lovely fragrance, delicate and simple.
I audibly praised and thanked my God.
Then I hungered. I wanted more.
I pleaded for God to give me more.
I wondered how could I stay in this moment forever.
That was exactly it. To stop and seek. To look and receive.
To feel, be still and breathe.
Had I not stopped, had time not stood quiet, I would have never felt that tickle, never smelled that sweet perfume.
God is like that. Like the cool breezes. Triggering so many sensations. So powerful, what stops the wind? Yet our eyes are blind to it. And we really never notice it. Unless we need it to cool us. Or if it displays its power in ways that are not pleasing to us. However, if we are just living, not stopping to just be, do we ever acknowledge that breeze? If we do not sit quiet, still, waiting, searching, yearning, do we ever really see God?
My moment quickly spiraled into hot tears of joy as I sat at God's feet. I was in communion with Him.
I could not do anything but sing, pray, thank.
I was filled.
I had joy.
I was joy.
I caught a tiny glimpse of what this journey is. What it is supposed to be. What I am searching for, counting these endless gifts. It can seem silly being thankful for buttermilk and ladybugs. It can be difficult to send praises when I step on a toy or get stuck in traffic. I wonder how any thanks can be given when I see others suffer devastation and loss. But then, when a moment comes, when God takes my very face in His almighty hands and holds me, when I feel that I am actually being WITH Him, I know that truly all things are grace.
That time in my living room, feeling His warmth and love and joy everywhere lasted for a long time, yet was so fleeting. I felt overwhelmed and wanted to share the joy I experienced.
I couldn't put it into words.
My gifts post from that moment made very little sense. I looked outside and saw my neighbor's car. Her husband is away for work-ups before deploying. She is lonely, she has told me this before. I always assure her that I am here if she needs anything, but have I shown that? Have I really wanted to show that? With three small children and a household to run I always tell myself that I am not expected to invite in another person. Another very chatty, person to talk to, feed, entertain.
What if she is hungry?
What if her soul is hungry?
What if she has not felt that joy?
And what if I treated her the way I would treat Christ Himself? Would I wave from the street and quickly rush my family inside, getting back to being busy?
I felt convicted.
I called to my kids to put on shoes and I quickly put the remaining nine of the dozen cookies I had just baked for my family on a plate, covered tightly in plastic wrap.
I cringed when my kids started asking about "their cookies" and why we were taking them to our neighbor. I told them that she is lonely right now and I thought cookies would cheer her up, show her that someone loves her.
I braced myself for the whining, the arguing, the selfish little woes that come from a child, a little person born, like all of us, with sin in their heart. There were no whines.
They looked at my face, perhaps they saw the joy, the love and quickly agreed with excitement.
As I watched my littles sharing joy and love with a batch of homemade cookies, I knew that I had heeded His call. I knew that just in this small gesture, something that really required very little sacrifice, my children had seen love.
Love of God. Love of neighbor.
And they were filled with joy.
From blessing because we are blessed.
Since that day, I have been hungry. Each moment seems to be a disappointment. I am yearning to commune, to sit still and feel Him, to praise and sing and cry with joy.
Now I need to learn, let Him teach me, how to find that same joy and love in the everyday mundane. When I am washing kids' hair, driving to the store, cleaning the floor. I know there is joy in these things.
How do I find it and feel His presence there in THAT moment? Not just in the moment after, when I reflect, or the moment when little sticky hands are not grabbing at me. How do I let time stand still when someone always needs something, when I am always forgetting or messing up something?
When I am feeling sad or tired or anxious?
When I am envious?
How do I fight those feelings and replace, fill my life with that perfect moment?
Communion with the Almighty?
Joy from blessings, blessing others from joy.
All is grace.
To give thanks.
To do thanks.
Everything I do should be thanks.
That's what I desire, Lord help me to see.