Thursday, June 14, 2012

A pleasant land

"And I thought, how [gloriously and honorably] I would set you among My children and give you a pleasant land, a goodly heritage, the most beautiful and best [inheritance]among all nations! And I thought you would call me' My Father' and would not turn away from following Me." (emphasis mine) Jeremiah 3:19, Amplified Bible

I read this today and it broke my heart. I fell face down before Him.

I could feel the tender heart of God, bruised and hurting, could see the disappointed hopes and plans He had made,  Who had done everything He could to show His children He loved them - and He got nothing back.  Zero. Nada. Zip.

Have you ever loved like that?  I have.  The pain goes deep into the heart, you're left with a bitter taste in your mouth and the bruises remain tender for years. And this passage speaks not of a foolish human heart, but of the tenderest, gentlest, most loving Heart that has ever existed. The heart of One Who wants nothing more than to shield us in the shadow of His wings, to hold us with everlasting arms, to sing over us with songs in the depths of the endless night.

Have you ever noticed that satan tells the same lies to every generation, and every generation swallows it whole, wanting that forbidden fruit, that knowledge of good and evil? And in the cool of the evening when God comes looking for us, we're busy sewing fig leaves together - which, incidentally, give off a sap that is extremely irritating to the skin, let alone skin in vulnerable areas.  I'm just saying.  

My misspent youth is as much an example as anybody's .  Perhaps that is why the priests in Jerusalem could not serve in the temple until they were 30 years of age.  They had to be old enough to see a bit more clearly what was truly worthwhile.

In Hebrew the word for "idol" means "vapor."  Something fleeting.  Insubstantial. Useless. yet that's what we choose - time after time after time.

I wish I could tell you that I have never sold Him for 30 shekels of silver - that I have accepted my illness with perfect submission and never pined after vapors.

But it would not be true.

I have been utterly selfish on some days. Short-tempered. Excusing a lack of agape love with a bad headache or choosing self-protection to conserve my energy so righteously when I knew I should have been trusting Him and just spilled it all out. I have let the pain I was enduring win  too many times. I pray it wasn't at the cost of someone else's eternity.  I pray I never planted seeds of bitterness in place of love.  I pray I never made anyone feel unimportant or used. I pray I never gave someone the impression that my King had ever failed me - or would ever fail them.

But I will never know until the moment I face Him.

And all the while my Father, Who had gloriously and honorably set me among His children in "a pleasant land, a goodly heritage, the most beautiful and best [inheritance]among all nations (no matter what CI looks like to me at this moment in time) looks on with an ancient sadness .

I have wanted this year to be ruled by the word "teachable".  Well, I am learning - and some of what I am learning breaks my heart.  But I pray from this day forward I have learned to never again choose vapor over substance - and that I will always call Him "my Father" and never, ever, turn away from following Him.