Like an egg
And then everything
Yolk and all
Until the shell empties
And only the shell remains
There is nothing
Until that also breaks
Sometimes, God allows us to be broken.
God allows us to experience spiritual wilderness. A time when we feel dry, as if our bucket is thrown into a well and the only thing that comes up is thick mud.
God allows us to be brought to the end of ourselves so he can put us back together and be the hope that gets us through the day.
Depression is real.
Anxiety is real.
Anger is real.
Sadness is real.
Emotions can be warning signs; but left by themselves, they can capsize a boat heading into a storm.
It almost feels like we can’t be honest about our feelings anymore, especially in places of worship.
If the pastor asks you, “How are you doing?” Sometimes, it’s hard to tell the truth.
“Well, sir, it’s difficult for me to get up in the morning. It’s hard for me to have a purpose right now, as I feel useless or insecure or angry or depressed or anxious . . . It’s hard for me to be honest with you, myself and God because I still think I can handle it on my own.”
Have you ever had that mini-brain conversation to yourself before?
We can handle it on our own . . .
Until it completely shatters us, and we have nowhere else to go, and no one else to turn to.
But every day, we might be facing real problems, real issues, or real hardships.
God wants us to come to him with our depression, anxiety, insecurities or other emotional needs.
King David hid nothing from God.
This is the kid who slew a giant, who killed thousands, who brought together a nation, who survived King Saul . . . and who depended on God instead of himself.
In one of David’s songs to God, he wrote this:
“You’ve kept track of all my wandering and my weeping.
You’ve stored my many tears in your bottle—not one will be lost.
For they are all recorded in your book of remembrance.” (Psalm 56:8)
God sees us when we cry,
when we are broken,
when we feel all is lost.
There was a woman in the book of Genesis who was used, harassed, then tossed out to wander in the wilderness until she found help or death.
Her name was Hagar, and she was Abraham’s concubine, the mother of Ishmael and the envy of Sarah as she conceived a son 15 years or so before Sarah was able to do so (never mind that Hagar becoming a concubine to Abraham was Sarah’s idea in the first place).
But after Sarah had a son of her own, she wanted Ishmael and the mother gone. Begrudgingly, Abraham did so after praying to God about it.
Hagar ends up in the wilderness (for the second time), gives up hope, and hides Ishmael, who is on the brink of death, behind a bush, so she doesn’t have to watch him die. Hagar walks away and begins to sob as she hears her son weeping, too.
Then God shows up:
“God heard the boy crying, and the angel of God called to Hagar from heaven and said to her, ‘What’s wrong, Hagar? Don’t be afraid, for God has heard the boy crying from the place where he is. Get up, help the boy up, and grasp his hand, for I will make him a great nation.’ Then God opened her eyes, and she saw a well. So, she went and filled the waterskin and gave the boy a drink. God was with the boy, and he grew; he settled in the wilderness and became an archer. (Genesis 21:17-20)
God saw Hagar’s desperation, once again, and provided (Genesis 17:13).
Help was not far away. God literally called down from heaven, opened Hagar’s eyes, and showed her a well to drink from so the two could live. But God didn’t say his goodbyes there. The Scriptures say that he “was with” Ishmael as he grew up into a young man.
God took care of Hagar, the castaway, the one no one wanted.
God wants to take care of you, too.
He hears you when you cry, just as he heard the weeping of Ishmael and Hagar.
God offers hope – maybe you just can’t see it yet and you need him to open up your eyes.
Perhaps that well you are trying to relentlessly draw water out of is dry because you are trying to draw water from yourself and not the eternal source of life and peace (John 4:10).
Draw from the well of life today. Be honest with yourself and with God.
God will take care of you like he did Hagar.
God sees you.
In love and truth,
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