I am often in awe of the amazing people I have in my church family. I often wonder if others get to experience the joy of fellowship and love in their churches as we do at Woodhaven Community Church. There are SO many people I look up to and love whole heartedly. I know God has placed us all together for HIS glory and strongly believe we have only seen the tip of His amazing power. We are destined to bring Him glory in awesome ways, I can feel it.
I can not believe I held myself back for so long from experience a love so unique, words don't speak of it. I had to breakthrough the barriers of myself to see the amazing things...no scratch that. Amazing PEOPLE he laid before me. I had to let go and release all of the weight I was dragging down upon myself and give it to God, who was standing there waiting for me to be ready to trust Him enough to handle it.
The Road Travelled.
I opened my eyes new to this world with wonder and curiosity and started down this journey called life. I walked along the rocky road unknowingly searching for something to make me whole. I looked in all the wrong places. I would look at that glittering bag sitting on the side of the road, calling my name, certain it was what I had been looking for I would run to it faster then my thoughts could follow. Only to pick it up and realize the weight of it was more then I had bargained for but it was mine. I was going to carry that bag. Straight on until the next one. Until, I found the next gorgeous, shimmering bag screaming to belong to me. I picked it up without so much as a thought for the one I was already carrying. I had to have that bag. And I did. I carried it.
Oblivious to the burden that was beginning. I kept searching and picking up these bags until I had more then I could even remember. Some lost in the mix of the rest of them. I knew they were heavy but I didn't realize the weight of them. So I continued on my path, trying to control every step I took and juggle all these gorgeous bags that were beginning to look pretty unsightly.
Until one day, I took a step that was different then my own and realized there was someone beside me. A gentle loving soul. Peaking my curiosity, I looked from the corner of my eye on occasion to ensure he was still there. He made me nervous and at peace at the same time.
I continued down the rocky road, a little more aware of the steps I was taking with every foot. Finding new bags but growing more weary of their contents I began to be more selective on the bags I would add to my collection. Feeling the discomfort but unaware of where it was coming from.
I continued. The man was still there. With each step I took I let my thoughts run wild at who he could be? What could he want? Why is he following me? Until, one day he said to me. "I could carry those if you'll let me." He wanted my bags! Uh ugh! No way Mister. I got these all on my own. I am a big girl I can handle it. He smiled a gentle smile and we continued.
As those rocks hit my feet, I became more aware of the weight of what was carrying. It was my bags. They were heavy but they were mine. I couldn't let them go. Could I? Ok maybe just this little pink one...its not too big. If I give up this one the weight will let up a bit and this guy will feel better that I am actually trusting him. " Here ya go...you can have this tiny little purse." I guess I don't need that one anymore.
Boy, was I proud of myself. I let the guy have that little one. I am making him feel good. Yay me.
Relief was fleeting. It wasn't long before the weight became unbearable. O.K. have to give up a couple more or I won't make it much further. With a meek smile, I offered him a couple more. He again took them with a smile. Without a word, we continued. Weird, It was almost as if the world around me was getting clearer.
As the journey continued and I continued to survey the weight of my bags, I chose to pick up less of them. Falling weak to a few.
As the steps grew heavy, and I released a few more, I began to recognize this man as my comfort. Still further on I began to recognize him as my friend and even further still I realized he was my father. I stood still upon that realization. I stood still for a long while.
Until the day came, when I decided to trust him with all of those bags, I once thought so beautiful. I thought I would be nothing but he had been with me long enough so why not. I trusted him.
So as we stood still, I handed him my bags one by one.
I released the last one and a light shone through my life like nothing I had ever seen! I was free from a prison I hadn't noticed I was in! I looked to the man beside me with clarity and love. Jesus! My Jesus! I ran to his arms into an embrace so unlike those of the bags I held for so long! My Savior! My Redeemer!
Tears streamed down my face as the realization of everything I had done had entered my mind, the bags I had collected, the sin I had accrued. Then sobs overwhelmed me when I realized they were gone. He had taken those awful things from me with a smile on His face and they were gone. He paid the price for my sin. He carried all that weight of mine and took it with Him to the cross. So I could stand here and be forgiven. So I could stand here and be loved. So I could stand here and Praise Him always. My search was over and what I had been searching for had always been my side. I am complete with Jesus.