A Light-filled Year and Time for Restoration
I have been strangely touched by my own Devotional series All Things New, which was written some time ago.
I see the ‘new’ from an unfamiliar mountain and it is a fresh view of the Lord and His wondrous ways. And it’s true. He makes all things new…for Himself, by His presence. His purpose demands that all things be made new, whether we want the new or not. Writing this, I am smiling and even that smile is ‘new.’ Joy is somehow new.
Today (January 11) is the one-year anniversary of my husband’s passing. Personally, the year has seemed to be a terribly dark time, but today I have ‘new’ eyes and I see that actually it has been a year of unrelenting Light. You know how blinding it can be when a really bright light shines in your eyes? Well, looking back and also seeing the Now of today, I realize that I was blinded in the Light of God’s presence. What I felt as His absence was actually His radical intimacy with my heart and spirit…and even His invasion of my mind, taking me to all kinds of new seeing – of my life, my self, my story, flooding me with His reality and His grace. It was a terrible Light, and I didn’t comprehend that it was a healing force, so powerful I couldn’t escape it, so gentle that I could barely recognize it.
For a whole year, I felt wrecked physically and destitute spiritually. Yet the Holy Spirit would miraculously lift me up to declare Christ’s message, time and again.
My promise was Jeremiah 30:17 and my Bible seemed constantly to flop open on its own, to this word:
“For I will restore you to health And I will heal you of your wounds,” Declares the Lord.
My wise daughter, who prays for me, said several times, “Mom, you need take a year to rest and discover who you are now.” And she often reminded me, “Have you thanked God for where you are?” To which I would usually answer, “Not lately but I will now.”
Ultimately the Lord was saying the same thing to me. “Be still and know that I am God.” After such a long-term trauma, I could barely obey it.
A Time for Restoration
I lived most of my life in the centrality of being a wife. I loved being a wife and to be without that role was bewildering. I won’t tell the long tale of my transition but today I sense a new world, even a new me. And I am humbled in worshiping my Shepherd, whose wisdom – despite my thrashing – “made me lie down in green pastures and beside still waters, to restore my soul.”
Listen My Beloved! Behold He is coming, climbing on the mountains, Leaping on the hills!
Behold the winter is past…the sound of the turtledove has been heard in our land.
Song of Solomon 2:8, 11-12
I am different. I can say many things surprise me by being brand new: my sense of time, my priorities, new joys. I have a new Bible in the old cover!
There is a fresh simplicity of living, loving and being.
Above all I see Love with new eyes. I see a world of brutal madness and desperate need – for God’s Love! Our world is disintegrating from the absence of Love and the presence of Hate. Such a human crisis can only be saved by prayer for the Love of Christ to pour out “on ALL mankind” by the Holy Spirit according to Acts 2:17-18 NASB.
‘And it shall be in the last days,’ God says, ‘That I will pour forth of My Spirit on all mankind; And your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, And your young men shall see visions, And your old men shall dream dreams; Even on My bondslaves, both men and women, I will in those days pour forth of My Spirit And they shall prophesy.’
The great prophecy for the End Times! For that promise I live…
A Time for Prayer and Joy
So many of you prayed for me this year. Some of you I have never met in person, some I have been with for decades. You faithfully and daily lifted me up in prayer. Words cannot tell how much I needed those prayers nor how amazingly I was sustained by them. I can only ask God to reward and bless you for standing with me in this time of dire need.
As I wrote this, I was keenly aware that so many are living in what seems like blackest night. And I am passionate before God that (perhaps through my testimony) you will gain hope in the Blazing Light of God’s love and presence – for you. He is there, intimately with you. May His Light reveal the Person of Christ, that Jesus’ glorious life will fill you personally with a new fullness of His Love.
Jesus, the Light of the World, has given me great ‘treasures of darkness.’ I am filled with exuberance to share these treasures with you in the coming months. To all who graciously support us in the message of Christ’s Throne and indwelling:
In this year 2017, our prayer for you, dear friends, will be Ephesians 1:16-19 (HCSB):
WE never stop giving thanks for you as WE remember you in OUR prayers. WE pray that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, would give you a spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Him. WE pray that the perception of your mind may be enlightened so you may know what is the hope of His calling, what are the glorious riches of His inheritance among the saints, and what is the immeasurable greatness of His power to us who believe, according to the working of His vast strength.
In the Love of the Lamb,
Any Prayer Requests at This Time?
We are giving ourselves to prayer this year, so please send us your prayer requests. Just email Martha—at—shulamite.com and put ‘Prayer Request’ as the subject. It will be a privilege to lift you up to Him who loves you, with all His power and goodness available!
Also, please contact us if you are prompted by the Spirit to pray and participate in the “Shulamite prayer team.”