This sweet circle of ashes turned to beauty

I wrote this a few months ago after a beautiful sharing session at our house church. The Father revealed to me that the realness of our struggles draws his presence closer.

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I realize that I struggle, I realize that we all struggle – and that its okay to struggle! Beauty rises from the ashes and you will strengthen us like tall oak trees planted by streams of water. This cross will never ask for more than I can give.

The nearness of the body invites the nearness of God’s presence.

Sitting on a coffee table as one in a circle of women – my heart cannot help but break. We had not fathomed the depth in which we would share so publically, we had not grasped the nearness of our hearts to each other.

I am weary from the days past and my head is not where it should be. My body had shown up together but my heart arrived in pieces. I drag my feet and have no thought of the meal shared together as a family. I should’ve fasted during the day but my downfall was so great I came to a place of carelessness.

Praise and worship begins and I feel the floor urging me closer, so I obey. Face to the floor I whisper, “I can’t feel you, what happened to that passion that stirred a hunger and a thirst inside of me? What happened to that intrigue you place into my heart? It is all gone. I’ve wasted what you so freely gave and now I feel miles from you. You were closer than my skin but now you are further than the moon. Help me. My heart is breaking and I don’t feel you at all. What do I do now, where do I go from here?”

But you showed up – when I least expected you to be faithful, you were faithful. A hearts attitude changed the whole room, a broken voice filled with emotion brought on an intimacy in the atmosphere. As he confessed, “My heart of stone has been removed and an emotion-filled heart has been replaced” tears stream down my face without me realizing and tears around the room fall to the floor as his testimony is drawing the presence of God closer.

So as we sit in this circle our hearts burdens pour out into the ears around us,

“I found my family in my church – blood truly means nothing.”

“Breast cancer is a new companion in my life – but I believe he will heal.”

“I have missed a life time with Christ and it breaks my heart, being the age I am and only coming to know him now leaves me filled with regret.”

“I hate my work and I feel judged in the house of the Lord. My true self is not good enough for them.”

“My tumour has grown, do not pray for the tumour to shrink but rather for my faith to believe that I will be healed.”

“My mom has died and my father has rejected me.”

“I need more time with my sweet Jesus.”

“I do not share but in my quietness I will encourage.”

With each word those ladies spoke, more tears streamed from my eyes. With each heavy word spoken a word of encouragement and love was given back to fill her again. With each cry of help that was presented the closer your Spirit drew – your scent was lingering and love was thick. That night your banner over us was love.

 

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