November 20, 2014.

I am marking last night as one of the times in my life when I felt the earth shift, the internal structures of my heart made utterly NEW.

This is years of process — this rejecting of lies, this saying yes to God’s ways for me — but I’m saying yes really big this time. Not only for the next step the way I usually try to do with fear and trembling, but to all of it — regardless of outcomes, my picture of success or the risk required. I’m willing to look a fool.

When Christal Jenkins spoke right to my core last night: “Your idea coming out is connected to someone else’s purpose,” I saw for the first time my denial of the seemingly crazy God ideas in me as an outright rejection of someone else in need.

Because who am I to say my bread is not good enough for her table when she’s hungry? Who am I to say my words or thoughts are not complete enough when you’re right starving for hope? Who are any of us, drawn up in love and imbued with holy gifts, to deny another what and Whom we have to share?

I’ve been terrified of failing in the spoken and written word, but last night I knew it. I’m done placing my performance on the throne. I surrender.

This is the night I bowed down to the beauty of this God who plucked me from the pit and for the first time fully embraced the gifts he’s given me — this God who sits high and bends low. I receive with joy my call to communicate hope, to bring light, to call people into the purposes for which they’ve been made, to herald joy has come and so has the love. It’s already come, actually. The love is yours.

On my drive home last night, I told God that I often feel like I’m seeing words through muddy film, and I want that to change. I want words to flow from my tongue and fingers. I want to live, speak and write loosed, in freedom. And as I spoke that from my mouth, I recalled the many times I’ve said to Michael, or to friends and family, and to God himself, that I don’t want the words, the vulnerability and embarrassment anymore. That I don’t want this hard, scary, unknown road — that I would choose another way, another gift.

And my heart sank with knowing how by denying the gift I’ve diminished its power. So last night, as I pulled up in front of my house and turned off the car, I put fear and insecurity and rejection on notice. I laid them down again, for REAL this time.

I felt the tears and strength well up (because you know how often strength and vulnerability walk hand in hand), and I knew it, this newness of life that felt like foot stomping freedom. I walked right into my house like a woman on a mission and wrote my gratitude in messy scrawl and put it in our thankfulness box, so I could remember. I asked Michael to pray for me, to seal in what I’d heard, what I now know.

I told God I’m thankful for how You made me, and I meant my sensitivity and the way I see and the voice I’ve been given and all of it — and I told God thank you that I get to operate from that place to bless precious humans and glorify my beautiful Maker. What a privilege. And that call is to each of us. To you, friend, sitting there in front of your computer or in the glow of your smart phone — you are made, as Christal said last night, for a purpose on purpose. Not just parts of you, but all of you, called into the wondrous light to be the gift you are.

Over the last years, I’ve accepted the calling, but not embraced it. Obeyed, but not rejoiced. Tonight, I declare that I will no longer reject the shape of my heart, the ways I see, the ways I notice. I’m choosing to see the gift of communication, of writing and speaking as a gift prepared for me, in my skin, for this time. Whatever that means, whatever the reason.

I’m going to stop with my reluctant examining of the package, and I’m going to open the gift with gusto, tugging ribbons, tearing paper and waiting to see how God will make himself known from within all the mysterious folds.

As you might guess, this was more like 30 Minute Friday for me, but when a sister’s seen Jesus, she’s got to keep writing! Joining with the Five Minute Friday community at Kate’s with today’s prompt: NOTICE.

Also joining the #givemegrace community at the beautiful Lisha Epperson’s.


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