In The Morning When I Rise, Give Me Jesus

Driving to work this morning, the sun shone through the fog so brilliantly that more than once I had to pause and inhale the beauty of it. I could see actual rays of sun, like the rays kids draw in pictures, beaming their way through the fog, reaching out to me like an exclamation point- “Good morning!”

And I smiled.

And I tilted my head towards heaven and said, “Thank you, Jesus, for bringing me through another night.”

I spent hours and hours yesterday talking with Jesus- sobbing, worshiping, driving aimlessly, falling to my knees, reaching my arms toward heaven DESPERATE.

And I had to remind myself, as I lay awake in bed last night, that I am loved. “You love me,” I repeated over and over again, trying to replace every other thought and emotion with that simple, but profound, truth. He loves me. And eventually, I was able to sleep. Blanketing myself in His love.

I prayed over myself last night. I put a hand on my heart and I prayed. At one time I put a hand on my forehead and prayed. And maybe that’s not biblical, maybe it’s weird, but I hoped my hand could represent the hand of Jesus. “Pray through me, Lord,” I pleaded, “Let my hand be Yours.”

It’s constant, choosing to lay things down at the foot of the cross, giving all over to Him, wholly entrusting myself to His care.

When sorrow fills my heart and threatens to pull me under water, I pass it off to God like it’s a hot coal. I don’t want to hold it- I CAN’T hold it. But He can.

And not only can He hold it, but He’ll use it.

He’ll collect the coals and eventually I’ll see the purpose of them- He’ll use them to build and sustain a fire.

And as I am praising Him for the fire, amazed at what He did with my pain, He’ll smile and show me I can use the fire to keep warm.

And as I worship Him for His goodness, He’ll smile again and use the fire to cook food. And He’ll feed me. And enable me to feed others.

And it will blow my mind because I thought the fire was the redemption of my pain, but it was just the beginning. Because He can do above and beyond what I can think or imagine.

Lord, help me continue to move THROUGH the grief. Help me not set up camp here. Help me not bury or numb my heart. Help me to breathe in what is and trust You to make something beautiful out of what’s been lost.

With everything- every thought, every emotion, I have to seek God. “Is this something You want me to try to hold, or do You want me to give it to You?”

Often I run my sorrow through a series of questions:
Is this something I have control over?
Is this something I can fix?
Is this something I KNOW to be true, or am I drawing conclusions based on partial evidence?

And the questions are really more of a formality, a way to soothe my spinning and frazzled mind, than they are necessary. Because almost every time I come up with the same conclusion: The only thing I can do, literally, is seek Him.

I can’t fix it.

I can’t KNOW the whole truth of what is.

I can’t KNOW what is coming.

Last night I prayed, fiercely, for the love of the Lord to overwhelm me. Because I have nothing else. There’s nowhere else to turn. There’s nothing else to grasp on to with both hands in my effort to stay afloat.

There’s no one but Him to greet me in the morning.

And He won’t wake me with a kiss on the forehead and a hot cup of tea,

but He’ll smile at me with sun rays like exclamation points.

And maybe that’s all any of us really has.

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