Friday, September 2, 2011

Finding REST in a Narrow Place


Joining today with Gypsy Mama and a community of others to offer a spill about REST.

Losing our football game last night prompted me to consider times of loss, adversity, disappointments, etc. Although defeat comes with a sting, it is temporary and can be a vehicle to victory. It is easy for me to jump on the encouragement train and speak words of wisdom to my fifteen year old, but what happens when I face similar circumstances or trials in my own life? We leave the football uniform hanging in the dressing room but the struggle to keep faith and stay strong catches a ride home with us.

Psalm 31:7 says "I will be glad and rejoice in Your mercy, for You have considered my trouble; You have known my soul in adversities, and have not shut me up into the hand of my enemy; You have set my feet in a wide place."

God knows each stop we make on our journey and the things we face there. He knows us, even in adversity and remains unchanging. It is our faith that wavers and our belief that sways.

In Ecclesiastes 7:14 we are advised to consider that God has appointed times prosperity as well as times of adversity. "In the day of prosperity be joyful, but in the day of adversity consider: Surely God has appointed the one as well as the other..."

We often do not know even our own heart, the stability of our faith, the depth of our beliefs or strength of our character until we are squeezed, tried and put to a test.

The end of Ps. 31:7 says He sets our feet in a wide place. I believe as we go through these adverse times, these times that feel narrow and constricted, we are being formed, molded and refined. At the end of this uncomfortable place opens wide the enlarged territory for which God is now preparing us.

It has been a struggle not to resist this part of my journey. The last several years have felt like a long, narrow hallway, but I am catching a glimpse of an opening ahead. I am resting in His truth and trusting that He knows me, He loves me and He never changes.

In this resting, I have found a quiet place. A place of restoring. A place of refreshing. A place of hearing. A place of knowing. A place of communing. A place of growing and becoming and being.

I pray that you find this place of rest today, this quiet place, this place created that you might know Him more. And I pray that you realize the fullness of His joy, feel the breath of His Spirit and accept His love that never fails.

Can I pray for you today?

Please feel free to leave a comment or send me an email (contact info).


*Although I took longer than the normal 5 minutes to write, I pray that this 5 minute read refreshes your soul.

6 friends had this to say:

Jen said...

Such encouragement. Thanks my friend. ~ JEN

brittany said...

"At the end of this uncomfortable place opens wide the enlarged territory for which God is now preparing us." Beautiful! I recently finished Corrie Ten Boom's 'The Hiding Place,' and she talked so much of this and how every experience is preparation for the work God has for us to do. There is such comfort (and rest) in knowing His hand is consistently, lovingly in all of it. Great post!

Shanda said...

I praise God that your path is opening up to more spacious lands. God is good and sees us through to the other side as well as letting is presence be so powerful during the trials. This was beautiful.

Stacy @ Heartprints of God said...

Oh, Shelly...."At the end of this uncomfortable place opens wide the enlarged territory for which God is now preparing us." I believe this, too. Knowing and believing this...and keeping it ever in focus...will definitely make those times of defeat, loss and adversity a little easier to take.
Thanks for once again encouraging my heart, stirring up my faith, and putting everything back in a Godly perspective.
Have a happy and blessed weekend-
~Stacy

OliveTree said...

I loved this statement: "We often do not know even our own heart, the stability of our faith, the depth of our beliefs or strength of our character until we are squeezed, tried and put to a test."

I have been going through a narrow place myself the last year, and am also trusting God that in his time he will bring me out into the wide open spaces. Thanks for sharing your heart.

Adrian L. said...

Hi Shelly, thank you very much for following. You also have a wonderful blog.