Sunday, July 31, 2016

Ruin is A Gift

It is a bit unbelievable that I am writing today sitting at my desk overlooking my new neighborhood that is over 500 miles away from what once was home.  Had you told me this time last year that this is where I would be, I would have sighed and thought....really...doubtful.

But, what story is stagnate when God is involved?  I have shared our journey many times on this page.  It is funny to me that when I began writing here, it was all mommy stories and cake recipes.  But God took my flighty fun with words and began a journey that mimics deep canyon grooves in desert rock.   My story has changed a hundred times.  The thread of my life continues its weaving, and my Great God keeps tilling the soil of my heart finding ways to show Himself more mighty and more precious to me at each turn.

Would I have willingly taken this path?  I don't know that in my own strength I could say yes.  But, I do know that I would not trade the jewels of our journey for the riches of the world.  What once felt like ruin now seems like transformation.  It is not perfect or glossy.  Life still has its bumps and cracks.  We are still flawed, but I see God in such a rich way that I can not even begin to regret the valley that brought me here.

There really is no ruin, when God is molding a soul.  It is only when we take ourselves out of His grasp that we find bleakness and emptiness.  If we can release our grip to His and fall into His grace, ruin becomes the gift of a lifetime.  To come to an end of self is to tap into the Holy of God.

I never did let go perfectly.  It was full of struggle and heaviness.  I sometimes long to retrace my errors to become more yielded to His grace because I have weathered those storms and I know of His faithfulness.  But the beauty of ruin is that even in my gravest mistakes, God replaced my ashes with His Beauty.

I often long to reach through the miles and hold the hearts of those that feel they are in the wreckage of their life.  I want to whisper assurance that this wreckage is only the beginning of a transformation when released to our Maker.  I want everyone to know that....ruin is a gift.  I dug out these words I scribbled when the heaviness seemed impossible.  I sit here and read them from across the country, from out of the depths completely transformed:

"Can I take this fiery-melting-dripping heart and hold it out to the Creator and trust that it is for the good of my soul?  Can I go a little deeper in my faith and open my clutching fingers and release this same heart to the Refiner?  Can I walk willingly into the whirlwind of Glory?  Can I trust that overturned is really the grasp of God's Divine Hand drawing me nearer to the image He has in mind for me? 
I sit in silence.  I long to be a soul on fire.  I ache to drip with this molten grace that I hope He is working into my soul fibers.  I do not want to take myself out of the flame if the flame is burning His glory on my heart.  It is painful often and full of tears.  It is revealing so many imperfections and failures.  It is uncomfortable and leaves me heart-searching.  But I know...I know it is for my good. I am overturned, and I will wait.  There is more, and He is not finished."

 Ruin is no doubt the road to transformation where God does His truest work.  Hold on dear soul, there is another side to this canyon.  There is a God that brings strength for despair.  And - He does his best work when we find ourselves living in the ruins of life.

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