I held the bottles of oil in each hand remembering what was said to me. One represented wisdom and the other represented encounters. Closing my eyes I wondered how to receive such great gifts. It was time to open up my heart and search out the deeper things placed there for my use.
The antithesis of wisdom would always be pride. Searching my heart’s chambers I sought the weapon which would help me and immediately found the hammer of humility. It would always help me pound my pride into submission.
The antithesis of encounters would be prejudice. If I expected encounters than I had to let go of any expectation for what package they came in. Searching my heart once more I found a second hammer labeled humility. Sighing, I understood this to make sense.
It was time to start swinging each of these great hammers; opening my mouth I began to pray… therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience…do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves. I opened each bottle letting the oil soak into my skin. Once strengthened it was time to walk it out day by day. In my mind I could hear an old song playing, “cause grace finds goodness in everything, cause grace finds beauty in everything“.
*Col 3:12, Phil 2:3, lyrics from Grace by U2
I keep seeing doves come flapping down into my yard. Everything about them comforts me. Remembering “the heavens were opened and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and settling upon Him”, I can only wonder about those who were present to see it actually happening? Meanwhile I look at these doves choosing to land in my yard with appreciation; grateful for the Spirit gifted to me, helping to settle my soul.
*from Matthew 3:16
Walking through the store I wondered at the bombardment of Christmas music. Some people like it a lot, feeling it adds to their holiday mood. I was curious about having to hear it repeated for weeks on end. The woman at the check-out did her job for my groceries and we engaged in polite small talk. She was honest to share the music was something to block out of her senses. Her statement intrigued me but I said nothing more, waiting to see what else she might speak. Within seconds she blurted the whole of her thoughts.
She shared that she just wanted to give to those in need but she had kids. She put up a tree because of them and was going through the motions. The look on her face hurt me to see. It was clear she felt trapped into doing something for the sake of other’s expectations. I could offer her no wisdom. Her internal battle was one she’d have to conclude for herself.
He looks at me with beautiful eyes changing hues in any given light; I see the love of Jesus. I listen to his voice talking to me softly, gently, at times firm; I hear the love of Jesus. His arms wrap around me when I am happy, when sad, when very tired; I touch the love of Jesus. The building of a fresh fire fills my nostrils, embers dwindling down, ashes seemingly cold; I smell the love of Jesus. Water rushes over me, I open my mouth, I drown in it again; I taste the love of Jesus.
In these ways I am using a sense common to us all…