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Answer the door…

I was spending time with someone recently who had it on her heart to question why, when we need it the most, our friends and family are seemingly nowhere to be found.  Her face was contorted in a look of pain and she fought back to tears as she shared with me a bit of her history.  She said she had been reaching out to others in an attempt to create a network of people and was experiencing difficulty in getting a connection.

I could only nod my head as my heart was asking the very same questions. It called to mind the cries of David’s heart in the Psalm 142:4-5:

Look to the right and see: there is none who takes notice of me; no refuge remains to me; no one cares for my soul. I cry to you, O Lord; I say, “You are my refuge, my portion in the land of the living.”

I believe we have all experienced the painful rejection of those we care about.  From the phone calls that go unanswered, to the unanswered texts, to the empty emails, and a general lack of encouragement on all fronts…we all know very well the sting of ‘abandonment’ when we are seeking to connect or our hearts are in need of comfort.

Sometimes it feels as if we knock and knock and knock on someone’s door and they just do not open it.

I have personally been working through this and it has been challenging my heart to grow.  I have been facing doubts and anxiety in several areas and I think my heart was aching for reassurance.  I even got angry about it and burst into tears as I cried to my husband, “I just do not understand, sometimes!”

I grabbed the car keys and told my husband I needed to get quiet with myself and God. I can do some of my best crying, praying, and rejoicing behind the wheel, alone, and with music turned up.  I have often worried what people driving past me must think about ‘that lady’ sobbing and yelling to herself!

As I started driving, I was hit with a whisper in my soul, “Are you going to drive around feeling sorry for yourself or are you going to show up for someone who needs you?”

I immediately knew exactly where I was going to go. I went to see my Grandpa.

My Grandmother died of Alzheimer’s almost three years ago and she was an important figure in my life growing up. My Grandfather was madly in love with her and he has been aching ever since she passed. He was gleefully surprised when he saw me on his porch, just showing up out of the blue. We spent over an hour sitting together and, as I started to leave, something urged me to just hug him long and hard. So, I stepped out of my comfort zone and held him in my arms. I did not let him pull away. I whispered in his ear how much I loved him and I kissed his cheek. I saw in his eyes how much he needed that hug.

I feel like his heart was crying out and I had the opportunity to open the door and invite him into my heart.  Then, I saw Revelation 3:20 in my mind’s eye:

Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with that person, and they with me. (NIV)

When someone badly needs us and their hearts are crying out, Jesus is the one knocking on our doors for them.  We have all had someone on our hearts and minds at times, feeling a nudge of some sort or another.  I believe that is the knocking of the soul.  Other times, someone is knocking on our doors directly by reaching out in some way.  We either answer the door or we do not.  Whatever we do and however we respond, we are doing it and responding to Him (Matthew 25:40).  This is a huge responsibility and not one that any of us should take lightly.  Jesus is compassionate and He longs for us to walk in His compassion toward one another.

As I drove home, I started asking God to change my attitude and give me a richer heart of faith. I asked Him to forgive me for being self-focused and for seeking anything outside of Himself for my reassurance. I asked Him to strengthen me and teach me to stop knocking on unanswered doors and let go, but to allow me to let go in love.

By letting go I can start appreciating, on a deeper level, that God is the One who will always show up.  God is my reassurance and He is the one Who steadies my feet!

By the time I pulled back into my driveway, I was feeling peace. When I saw the way my husband greeted me at the door, it hit me; my husband has always opened the door to my knocks, even in the worst of the storms. I made it a point to let my sweetheart know that I have noticed his presence, even when I tried to push away and even when I failed to acknowledge him.

I couldn’t help but think of Jesus as my beloved; the one Who left His scent on my door (Song of Solomon 5:5).

The Lord is always going to be there.  We are His bride and He is the faithful Bridegroom.  In fact, He wants us to know how to rely on Him and only Him. I believe when we reach that point of dependence on God, people will show up to reaffirm God’s great love for us. But, it might not come until we are willing to let go of all the unanswered doors we’ve been knocking on.

I felt such peace and security in realizing that my trust is now entirely in God.  Trust and security have been difficult issues for me to contend with and there was a time I could not trust at all.  There was a time I could not even trust God, because my heart was carrying too many heavy wounds.  When I realized just how much God really has done for me, I felt my heart let go.  I felt my heart fall into Him with complete and total trust.

Jesus is all I need to feel safe and secure and that, to me, is a miracle!

That is a huge miracle for me and I have been rejoicing in an area where I once had weeping and great pain.

And, wouldn’t you know it?

Someone answered a knock at my heart’s door and, when the door opened, I was so happy about who was standing there; my big brother.   

He affirmed everything God had just been walking me through and he affirmed me with such great compassion and love.  I have been experiencing more tears of joy.  I cry all the time now, but this time I am crying from a place of great awe and thankfulness instead of from a place of emptiness and lifelessness.

My heart swells.

Heavenly Father,

Thank YOU.  I cannot stop thanking You and rejoicing.  You are my stronghold and my shield!  In You alone I trust!

I pray that Your Spirit will encourage believers everywhere to start showing up and keep showing up where presence is badly needed. Forgive me for the times I have focused on myself and my own needs instead of realizing how much responsibility I have to show up, too. Thank You for leading me and growing me in this area.

I am ready to answer the door for You.

Amen

Deuteronomy 31:8

It is the Lord who goes before you. He will be with you; he will not leave you or forsake you. Do not fear or be dismayed.

This post appears in the book: Shattered in Him © 2016 JD Mays

20 thoughts on “Answer the door…”

  1. Reblogged this on A Blog About Healing From PTSD and commented:
    My heart was broken yesterday — twice.

    The first time was at the women’s weekly Bible study that our church provides on Thursday mornings. The Bible study itself was wonderful. But after the study ended, I went to the restroom. I hurried. I really did. There was no dawdling or primping in front of the mirror, I am way too old for that.

    But when I came out, all of the lights in the building had been turned off, the doors were closed and locked, and everyone was gone. When I got out into the parking lot, my car was the only one there.

    The pastor’s wife called my cell phone and said she was sorry, that she hadn’t realized, until she was driving away, that my car was still there. I told her it was okay, that finding my way out of the building in the dark all by myself builds character. And I really do know how busy and rushed she is. Not only is she the pastor’s wife, they have three teenagers still living at home. Yikes!

    But what broke my heart was that one of the women there, who had previously told me that she wanted us to go out to lunch together, Dutch treat, after every weekly Bible study, had also left… without making plans to meet me at a particular restaurant anywhere.

    The last time we had lunched together, as I was telling her about something in my distant past, I saw a look in her eyes that made me think I had trusted her with something she could not understand. Immediately, I felt her warmth toward me disappear. But I told myself at the time that I was being overly sensitive and imagining things, because she had shared enough of her life story with me that I had thought she would understand.

    But her rushing away yesterday while I was in the restroom, without a word about meeting for lunch, confirmed my feeling, and it broke my heart.

    So I came home for lunch, instead, telling myself that my loving husband always welcomes me with open arms, which he did. And he was very empathetic when I told him how abandoned I had felt, when I came out of the restroom to a dark, empty building.

    But then, a couple of hours later, my husband and I got into one of the worst arguments of our marriage, definitely the worst argument in many years, because he wants to take out a $50,000 mortgage on our completely paid for house, in order to pay off high interest debt, and lend his daughter $17,000 to buy a house of her own…. and I don’t really want to put a mortgage on our paid for home, because I have experienced foreclosure twice in my life, once as a child, and again as an adult, and it was a horrible experience. Especially now that we are in our sixties, having a paid off house has been a huge security for me.

    But my trust should be in the Lord, not in a house. I know this. And I should be willing to give up everything, if it is the Lord’s will, as a committed Christian, I do believe this. But… is this God’s will?

    Mu husband became furious at me for wanting to prayerfully and calmly talk out all the pros and cons, rather than just blindly trust his judgment. Because, quote: “You don’t know our finances like I do!” And “You aren’t thinking right, you seem overly emotional and anxious!”

    Then a lot of very hateful words started flying, from both sides.

    By one o’clock in the morning, we had both apologized — my husband first — and hugged. But I went to bed feeling like I had been run over by a bulldozer, and “sorry” wasn’t going to put my broken bones and smashed organs back together. Even worse, I hated myself, because I was just as guilty as the driver of the bulldozer…

    Then I woke up shortly before sunrise, picked up my Kindle Fire tablet, and read this wonderful post:

    (Comments are temporarily closed here while I try to finish my memoir, etc etc. Thank you for stopping by, and God bless. And please, visit the original awesome post and thank the beautiful author!)

    Liked by 3 people

    1. WONDERFULLY loving, uplifting and understanding post introducing THIS one, Linda. Thanks – and I’m sorry that the woman missed lunching with YOU. She might have learned something about empathy and love had she followed through.
      xx,
      mgh
      (Madelyn Griffith-Haynie – ADDandSoMuchMore dot com)
      – ADD Coach Training Field founder; ADD Coaching co-founder –
      “It takes a village to educate a world!”

      Liked by 4 people

  2. I thought of this verse as I read your post. It is the Lord’s answer to Paul when he prayed to have the “torn in his side” removed from him. The Lord answered him saying “My grace is sufficient for you, for My power is perfected in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly in my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest on me” (2 Cor. 12:9). Jesus’ power and love is shown in our human weaknesses, our pains, and our sorrows. We learn from this that we need Him more than ever in our lives to help us through hard times…good post!

    Steve

    Liked by 2 people

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