Tuesday, August 28, 2007

In Other Words

"Under the banner of God, victory is always assured;
but apart from it, defeat is a certainty.
When the banner of God's rod was not held high, Amalek prevailed.
You can't do battle against the flesh under your own power."
~ Kay Arthur ~ Lord, I Want to Know

I must confess that, at first blush, I thought I would be unable to post today. Apart from a general agreement with the sentiment set forth by Moses' example, I didn't feel any relevence for today in Kimberly-land. Do not misunderstand. My world is as un-idyllic as anyone else's, and I have done battle with the enemy. I have met against him with the Lord's strong shoulder nearby. I have called upon my mother to assist me in prayer at such times. The battle is very real, although today has been relatively free of skirmishes. At least to my human eyes. And that brings me to what the Lord showed me today.

First, the Lord gently reminded me that I have been suffering more bruising from the enemy than necessary. And in that regard, the enemy has gained a toehold in my life.
I've always had trouble making close friends. I think everyone has had times when our friends have let us down, even hurt us. I've had a few more than my share lately. My best friend (at the time) decided to divorce her husband. She divorced all of her friends too; and after an odyssey into an abusive situation, drug use and turning her back on the Lord she lives in spiritual and physical poverty - a lonely alcoholic who won't let anyone in.

My next "best friend" didn't wrong me per se, but her teenage son abused my young son in the worst way imagineable. She abjectly refuses to even consider that he could have done such a thing. Thus the end of friendship #2 - necessary, but still painful.

Many years later, I befriended the mother of my son's classmate at karate. We became instant friends, closer than sisters in a matter of months. What happened? Yup, she moved to Houston. We're still very close friends, and I love her like a sister, but it's just not the same.

Now why did I just dump all of that on y'all? To get to this: the Lord showed me today that I had been actively avoiding new friendships in an effort to avoid getting hurt again. Pushing people away, or just not letting them close in the first place.

Really, I knew it down in my heart, but didn't want to admit that it was wrong. Yes. Wrong. I'm admitting it. I've gone out of my way to avoid people in 'real life' and in the process I missed out on so many blessings. I see now that I can't continue holding my arms up alone. And while my mother is faithful to the end if the Lord tarries she won't be here forever. My precious husband is always there for me, but sometimes cannot relate to things the way a girlfriend would.

God showed me that I've been wondering why my arms were so tired, when I was shooing away those who would offer some relief. OUCH

When we are as in tune with our spiritual vision as we are the physical, we will begin to see that the battle is never really over. It can't possibly be; the war is still on. There are days when the war rages in our hearts and minds, and we cower before the Lord pleading mercy on our own or a loved one's behalf. Then when the battle eases, we rest. But we rest thanks to the those in the heavenly realm who continue the fight on our behalf. Those in whom the Lord has placed some of our spiritual and - I believe - occasional physical protection. What a wonderful God we serve who not only meets but exceeds our needs!

If you've ever read any of Frank Peretti's books, you'll know how easy it is for me to picture it. Close your eyes with me.

See yourself - holding your arms aloft as you prayerfully watch your child battle in the valley. God's word is in your hand, and the eyes of your child look to you over and over. Searching, seeking the courage to stay the course. Looking to you for the example of how to fight the good fight. Your arms begin to falter, shaking with exhaustion. The storm clouds are thick, and the thunder is rolling low and ominous. The Lord is there, you know, but He has entrusted you with this particular fight. He seeks to increase your faith.

Just as your right arm begins to collapse, one of the angels appears to help you. This is no cherub or seraphim. This...this is a warrior. A beautiful being created as a servant to God himself. And he is here. Helping you, a sinner saved by grace. There is his sword, you see? The sword of the Spirit that is so sharp. It's in his other hand, ready to ward off that which threatens your precarious perch on the edge of the cliff. With his free hand, he grasps your elbow and bolsters your grip. Your other arm feels like jelly, you're nearly spent when another angel appears at that side to help you along. You feel his help, his support and devotion to the creation of his God.

Whether in the form of angels ministering or friends supporting, isn't is grand to know He cares for us? In so many ways! Friends DO matter. They are a gift from a loving God. Now, let's be clear: Like all of creation, angels are under God’s authority and subject to His judgment. They are not divine and are not to be worshipped. More on angels at this link: http://www.bible.org/page.php?page_id=711#

And now I see where I was wrong. No more pushing away for me. With God's help, my wall-building days are over!


ellen b said...

Blessings on you as you start building relationship again. It is true that women have a unique need for a girlfriend to consult and enjoy on the journey...

Tami Boesiger said...

A friend who moved away recently gave me a mug that says, "Friends are God's way of taking care of us." I like the sentiment and find some truth in it. I pray you'll let Him take care of you in some new relationships.

Emmyrose said...

May God continue to bless you always.

Thank you for visiting and commenting on my blog. Take care!

Rosemarie said...

I have been through a battle myself concerning false friendships last year and was devastated. However, I have found healing and peace in Jesus. I am open only to those relationships that are heaven approved and continue to invest in the healthy ones I already have. There are seasons and cycles and each one teaches us about people and ourselves.

Heavenly Voice

vivianbeth said...

Well ... A and I are here with sledge hammers to knock some of the wall down ... that is if you don't mind. LOL I think blogging has helped us some.

Bonnie said...

I will pray for you as you begin this journey with such touching vulnerability. Thanks for the encouragement, as always!

J said...

What beautiful insight. I was working away on your package, and came to read your latest thoughts... I'm excited to be your partner for the swap. Thanks for your honesty!