Yesterday during worship at my Bible Study, I had a vision of Jesus and oh my goodness, what a gift! (We'll get to that, I promise... just read on.)
I pulled out all our decorations this week and decked the halls, cranked the carols, and strung the lights. But in all of my arranging and hanging, draping and dangling, it felt a little-- well, empty.
I shrugged it off as one of those growing pains as we stretch into the new normal of Empty Nesterhood.
It was partly that, sure.
But it was also partly this:
I was looking at the month ahead and felt the need to just. push. through. Yeah. Already.
You see, I already lost sight of the fact that in this season of frenzy and fun, of over-scheduled calendars and under-valued quiet --I forget that more than glitter, I want Glory... more than presents, I want Presence.
Don't get me wrong... I love the glitter and the gifts. But more than any of that stuff -- I need a Savior.
And for me?
I need the Calm and the Quiet.
I need a little less Rush and a lot more Rest.
My Spirit Soars Higher when it has been given
Room to Breathe and Space to Stretch!
So as much as I love Christmas and all the extra festivities, I must remind myself to slow... to sip and not gulp... to ponder and not pound. I must inhale deep and let Wonder find His way back into my view.
Wonder... he's like Bob, in that He's always there!
("You think he's gone? He's never gone!")
It's been cold (as in literally... below freezing!) and with my house all glowy and festive, the temptation to stay inside where it was cozy was strong this morning. But Tuesdays are Bible Study mornings and it had already been two weeks, so I bundled up and headed out, stirring up hope and expectation to meet Him there.
We start off with worship and I was enjoying the songs and reordering my priorities, shifting my focus back to Him when all of the sudden, a vision unfolded before me.
With my eyes still closed, I saw the entire room that we were in. I saw each of us standing or sitting in worship, just as we were. But suddenly a veil was pulled back and I could see Jesus Himself standing right in front of each one of us.
He simply stood there, smiling --eyes brimming over with love. I glanced down and saw that He held a box... a gift, for each woman there.
Some noticed Him right away and gladly accepted the present, opening the box and knowing immediately that it was just what they needed.
Others couldn't see Him, but wherever they turned, He remained right there, standing right in front of them, patiently waiting, holding out the gift.
I somehow knew instinctively that each box contained whatever it was that each person was needing. Custom picked gifts for everyone.
Slowly it seemed everyone began to see Him and accept the gift of His Presence. Opening the box in front of them was harder, however. Not everyone was bold enough to believe that He was giving them a gift. He never made them take it - but always held it out to them.
I saw a few people cautiously open the box and peek in. Confusion and even a little glimpse of disappointment flashed across their faces. But He leaned in close and whispered softly, encouraging them to dig around. He assured them that what they needed was in the box.
I saw a few shuffle around and pull out what they needed. It was in there, they just needed to look a little longer, reach a little deeper.
Others began pulling and gift after gift came out. Much like a clowns' never ending scarf, all the gifts were attached. The one they needed was there but they had to receive other gifts first before they could reach in and take a hold of what they were looking for.
As the vision began to fade, I felt His Presence strong in front of me again. I opened my eyes in the Spirit and there He was, smiling and nodding down... I followed His gaze and saw a box. Before I could open it, I felt Him invade my space and lean in closer... He was right there in front of me, offering His Presence, and presents, and before I could unwrap the gift, the vision ended.
He is right there in front of you too, my friend!
I thought what a perfect picture to take with us into this holiday season! I pray we all catch a glimpse of His joy... of His great Love... and I pray that wherever we go, we remember He is right before us and that He goes with us.
Whatever we need, He holds in His nail-scarred hands, and freely offers it to us.
Our job, He whisper-reminded me, is to simply receive!
P.S. I'm linking up with these lovely writers:
JENNIFER DUKES LEE FOR #TELLHISSTORY