Are we making room for what's to come?
When sitting at my computer I spied an email come in from IKEA no less, asking me the above question? Am I making room for what’s to come… now I know what they were meaning – do I have enough containers or storage to hold all my junk now that Christmas is finished!
Well, this got me thinking about my physical storage for my heart and soul… am I making room for what the Lord has in store for me up ahead?
This is a great question and I believe it so needs to be addressed in each one of us on a regular basis, so we are not just running through life without God’s plan and purpose securely in our vision. Taking time to stop and shift our focus from the ongoing tumultuous ‘flash flooding’ (A flash flood is a rapid flooding of low-lying areas: washes, rivers, dry lakes and depressions. It may be caused by heavy rain associated with a severe thunderstorm, hurricane, tropical storm, or meltwater from ice or snow flowing over ice sheets or snowfields.) that goes on around us in our every day.
During time off (which is what I am currently doing) I take the opportunity to read novels that take me to far-off places – like my mind going on a holiday. I read a passage the other day of an ocean ripple (disruption or shifting under the ocean) that caused major destruction to nearby island villages and caught a mum and two kids off guard and they were swept away in the ‘flash flooding’ but because they could not swim, they were trying to grab tree trunks, etc. to keep them afloat! Of course, the hero of the story comes along and rescues them but in a similar way, we can all be caught off guard by the ‘flash flood’ of life in the natural and spiritual!
Prior to Christmas 2021, I invited a friend along to an event called ‘Leading with Self-Compassion’ (see here for link to further events) and the speakers there that day were so very encouraging and inspiring. My friend shared with me how much they needed to hear the messages that day as I would say both our individual circumstances had become very much what I shared earlier… both of us drowning in the ‘flash flood’ and trying our best to keep our heads above water in the desperate need to grab onto anything floating by!
Some of the tools I took away from that day were;
o Put ourselves aside and know God’s guidance
o Don’t be hard on yourself
o Don’t feel guilty for taking time out
o Give yourself permission to breath
o Don’t demand perfection from myself
o What do I laugh at?
o What company do I enjoy?
What’s on my shelf
o Too many voices - What am I listening to?
o Finding a new rhythm
o Our pace should be a 3min mile (slow)
o We are stronger than we think – strength comes from spending time with Jesus
If I were to now think through what my title today means to me – I would have to consider the expression ‘spring cleaning’! What is it I need to clean out, toss out, get rid of that is excess baggage and no longer needed in my life so that I won’t sink the next time something unexpected comes along and tries to pull me under the waves of a calamity!
In my consideration of all the above I would have to acknowledge that some of my extra-large boxes of responsibility have now been taken from me (July 2020 to September 2021 - both my parents and loving pet passed away) and although I did not have control over their physical ailments, I still feel the weight of guilt, wondering if I cared for them the best I could?
In the list above it says, ‘Don’t be hard on yourself’ and ‘Finding new rhythm’ so these two are very much on my priority currently but also ‘Knowing God’s guidance’, ‘Spending time with Jesus’ and ‘What voices I am listening too’ are also needing to be slotted in there to continue my emotional healing for all the others I still have in my life.
When I think back on my recent ‘flash flooding’ moments I am reminded of a couple of other aspects that those natural disasters bring with them…
Flash floods - This picture of water rapidly running off down streams and rivers – carrying and pulling along with its destructive force, all that is loose and movable into the maelstrom and eventually out to sea
o Those things that we were holding loosely (maybe we felt were important) in our lives could be ripped away through this experience with such force and although we are unable to stop it, if we allow the Lord to step in and heal our hearts He will allow us the opportunity to hold our arms open wide once again for Him to fill once more.
o ‘The Lord restored the fortunes of Job when he prayed for his friends, and the Lord gave Job twice as much as he had before…And the Lord blessed the latter days of Job more than his beginning;’ – Job 42:10-12 AMP
Flash floods can also deposit large quantities of sediments and can be destructive for vegetation
o We should not allow ourselves to be left standing on the sidelines of our demise and walk around with the destructive sediment continually stuck to us (it would also make us look totally yuk, muddy & ugly) as it will not allow the growth of vegetation, the fruit that God wants to be shown in our life for others to reap from and be blessed by. We need to seek out other loved ones to ‘wash us down’ – pray with us and assist us to see where we are not doing well so that we too will thrive and bloom amazing fruit to harvest for God’s kingdom.
o ‘I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener… “I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me, you can do nothing… “As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Now remain in my love… I chose you and appointed you so that you might go and bear fruit—fruit that will last… This is my command: Love each other.’ – John 15:1-17 NIV
I am so ready to make more room for Jesus to work in me personally this coming year and allow Him to use me the best way possible for more of those He dearly loves to know Him.
PRAYER – Lord thank you that I am called to take responsibility for my own life and for serving you and obeying your commands. Thank you that through the death and resurrection of Jesus not only has Satan been defeated but you have raised me with Christ to reign with him in the heavenly realms. Help me to make the most of every opportunity this year to bring the good news to those around me and the Nations. AMEN