"...granting an inheritance to those who love me, and filling their treasuries..." Proverbs 8:21
Last week was heavy. I felt the run of emotions from deep sadness to thrilling exuberance to deep rest. People in my life are hurting, and well, it's difficult for me to separate from that although I am learning my boundaries and how to lift them up to God to let go of burdens that just aren't mine to lift.
I was met by the perfect provision of God when I sought Him out first. Now, that sounds pretty nice, right? Well, I guess I've learned enough by trial and error of not going to Him first. I was overcome and so tempted by despair. Tears were flowing and I wanted to give up. I'm too tired for this again. I thought, "I've been here before, and I can't do it MY way again." So I ran to my "Read Scripture" App on my phone. Somewhere at the end of Leviticus, God met me with the rituals of the bread of presence. (An answer to my question early that week! What does that even mean? I found out a short field trip to Leviticus with the help of the videos in the read scripture app makes it all come alive! With the help of the Holy Spirit of course! There is so much on this when you start digging by the way...maybe another blog post.) Jesus is my bread of presence. Then a friend texted me, "What are you doing?"
"Crying on my bed."
" I am here if you want to!! But I also know sometimes we just need the cry and Jesus time." She answered me.
I called her. I knew she was processing grief too, and I felt like it would be worth it to fight for joy together. We weeped (well I certainly was weeping) and encouraged each other with truth. I am so thankful that the facts of the Gospel hold me together when the emotions hit hard. And I am so thankful that we are made for each other, for community, to weep and rejoice, and therefore glorify the Lord as one body.
Later that evening I was looking for a word. No, not a word from God but a word. Someone in a writing group needed a name, and I was determined that I would be the one to find it. I spent almost an hour clicking from thesaurus to dictionary to the Bible to find a fitting word. I finally gave up and went to bed. I woke up the next morning and felt irritable. I really wanted to find this word. I spent the first 45 minutes of my day searching. Of course, I don't think the words I came up with will even be used; but one word kept hitting a chord inside of me. TREASURY. Last month, the word TREASURE referring to my treasure being Jesus kept coming up so how sweet that He would remind me of this with the word TREASURY. Oh, but of course, He is doing a new thing. He wanted to remind me that I have a treasury to pull from always. I do not need to despair or feel like an orphan when I have the inheritance and identity of a daughter of a King. I have a treasury of promise, hope, joy, mercy, peace, comfort, and so much MORE. Praise the Lord! In Christ, we all have this treasury.
Then I started scrolling through my instagram feed (I know...probably not the best place to go when feeling irritable), and my faithful friend had just posted this quote from John Eldredge, "When the kingdom comes, my dear, heartbroken friend, nothing that was precious to you in this life will be lost. No memory, no event, none of your story or theirs, nothing is lost. How could it be lost? It is all held safe in the heart of the infinite God, who encompasses all things. Held safe outside of time in the TREASURIES of the kingdom, which transcends yet honors all time. This will all be given back to you at the Restoration...Nothing is lost."
Suddenly I remembered I could go to a coffee time with some new friends and I rushed out the door. For me, that morning, fighting for joy meant showing up no matter what emotions are doing. There is no condemnation in Christ, and I have the freedom to be vulnerable/not have everything together.
On the way to coffee time, right after this brilliant gift of the word TREASURY, an ugly lie came into my head. "You are a curse to everyone around you. Bad things happen wherever you go." I was so close to believing it, but I knew God had not just given me a treasury of love and promises to take that thought in my mind. I said "NO"! My identity is to be an ambassador of Christ, a conqueror in Christ, a balm of comfort to this world through Christ, and a blessing of presence to those around me with Christ. I am not a curse. I will wear that helmet of salvation (Check out Ephesians 6 sometime, I highly suggest Priscilla Shirer's Armor of God study) as long as I live because this world is full of lies and identity stealers.
The beautiful thing about that day was that I made it to coffee time. I wasn't in the best mood. Someone who is not a follower of Jesus asked me how I was. And I said the truth. "It's been a rough morning. My heart is heavy, but I'm choosing joy." That honesty opened up the honesty in her, and we had a meaningful conversation where we both had barely showed up that morning. We are human and we need each other, folks. I am so so so so glad for the people that God puts in my life. The grace of the Lord is mighty, and oh that I would receive it today and every day!
Oh, and if you haven't heard about my newfound love for this devotional, Streams in the Desert, let me just tell you how timely these words were to me. PERFECT TIMING.
"Climb to the treasure house of blessing on the ladder made of divine promises. By a promise as by a key open the door to the riches of God's grace and favor."
FOLKS, you always have more to pull from the treasury. It never runs out. Jesus made sure of that fact.
"No unbelief made him waver concerning the promise of God, but he grew strong in his faith as he gave glory to God, fully convinced that God was able to do what he had promised." Romans 4:20-21
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