“Suppose one of you had a hundred sheep and lost one. Wouldn’t you leave the ninety-nine in the wilderness and go after the lost one until you found it?” (Luke 15:4)
I love the feeling of knowing that I’m stepping into a different season! Especially when I’m stepping out of a harder season.
I was praying a few days ago, and You took me back to a video I saw months ago of Melissa Helser speaking about the necessity of seasons. As clear as day, I heard you say, “Do not misinterpret my tone or the season I have you in. Season of barrenness can be quiet, but they will always bring clarity. The season you’re in is one of rest, and while it is quiet, it’s not to be mistaken for a season of barrenness. In your season of barrenness, there was a work that I had to do in you. I had to break up the fallow ground in your heart, and there was a lot of fallow ground. Although it was an extremely hard season for you, it has set you up for the next season, because seasons of barrenness will always produce seasons of harvest.”
“Remember not the former things, nor consider the things of old. Behold, I am doing a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it? I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert.” (Isaiah 43: 18-19)
As I kept thinking about what You said, I kept wondering why would I misinterpret the season I was in. CLEARLY, I was walking in a new joy and wholeness that hadn’t been there for a while, and I didn’t think that I was carrying beliefs from an old season into a new one. But, It clicked when I remembered You speaking to me a few weeks ago. I was sitting in a night service, and I was tired because I had to be at work at 6 AM. The speaker wanted to pray for everyone, but I wanted to go to sleep. In the midst of my irritation, I heard You say, “Calm down. I haven’t forgotten you.”
BOOM. Plain and simple, there it was. Although there was something new that You were doing, there was a small fear that my life was forever doomed to “finding joy in the hard/hell places.” I’d settled into my heart that I’d either be last, or worst, forgotten. That small seed had been there from the moment I stepped out on faith three years ago. I expected my life to look one way, and because it didn’t, I started to believe a lie, and that lie hit its climax when I moved a year ago.
Pain has a way of really distorting reality, and Satan really is a liar. Gradually, that lie flowed deeper into our relationship, and just as gradually I ebbed further from You. When my relationship with You wasn’t okay, neither was anything else. Best friends couldn’t fix it, and money couldn’t fix it. There were certain things that I knew You’d had shown me, but instead of praying about them, I talked about them. I gave Satan exactly what He needed to attack, and for too long I truly believed those lies about You, the situations You’d placed me in, and the people You’d placed around me.
But, I was wrong.
I was angry.
I was proud.
I hated You.
I isolated myself from the people You placed around me.
I heard You say, “Let them love you,” but my heart was so hard towards You that I couldn’t even see them.
I hurt them, and I know that I hurt You.
Then, You sat me down.
I never thought I’d be on that side of the Gospel. I never thought I’d need someone to rescue ME! I mean, I’d always considered myself part of the ninety-nine, but never the “One,” never the prodigal. But to You, there was no such thing as a “little” wandering.
You hem me in, behind and before, and lay your hand upon me (Psalm 139: 5).
You put me in a situation where I couldn’t run anymore. You recklessly pursued me. You never let up. You walked with me through that season of barrenness, and You provided no way of escape from Your love. You hemmed me in on all sides and laid Your hand on top of me. You gathered every piece of my heart, and You healed me and made me whole again, and I thank You for that.
On this side of healing comes maturity. In any season that we’ve walked through with a hardened heart, it’s almost impossible to interpret anything correctly. You cannot understand what God is doing when You don’t trust His heart towards you. You won’t trust His motives, and you won’t trust the motives of those placed in front of you. (Trust me, pride and pain will try to convince you otherwise. I would know) As mature believers, as we are healed we have to choose God’s perspective on what’s really real over what we believed to be real.
So, I challenge you to ask the Lord (as you’re walking into new seasons, or still walking in your own) to dispel the lies that pain convinced you were truths. It’s possible that you can have a wrong mindset concerning a situation that you were convinced you were right about. Humble yourself in preparation for what He’ll tell you, receive your full healing, and do whatever you need to to make it right. He’ll lead you to the truth, and you won’t carry any baggage into a new season.
Search me, O God, and know my heart! Try me and know my thoughts! And see if there be any grievous way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting! (Psalm 139: 23-24)