Thursday, April 17, 2008

COME CLOSE

UPDATE: Since Thursday, I have no e-mail access, no cell phone, no land line for those of you trying to reach me. I only have internet access. The blog is the only way you can leave me a message.

Sitting in my tornado shelter singing from The Inside OUT with my 75-pound border collie on my lap and my sweet sixteen year old boy by my side. We were just sprayed with a shower of hail ice---what was that? Of course, my boy had to keep running to the window to see the blanket of hail. They predicted baseball-sized hail so we had the candles and chairs and blankets and the boy tucked in the hall. Turned out to me more like marble-sized hail.

When the sirens went off...
Britt was driving HOME from swim practice for the first time alone behind the wheel. HE GOT HIS LICENSE!!! I was already praying for him but I must say that it drove me to deeper dependence when I heard that old-fashioned siren blare and my boy wasn't home yet. Whoa! He wouldn't answer his cell...you can't when you are 16 and driving. Would he pull over? He walked through the door and I whispered a thank you to my God!

I have just gone through several days of training for a teaching job at our local public high school. Tomorrow is my 7th day of interview/training with no pay then I can start on Monday. Losing 7 days of pay has been very difficult. I am grateful for a full-time position but when I start on Monday, I won't see a paycheck until June 31st. I have thought so many times about the story of Hannah...and Eli seeing her mouth moving. And I keep moving my mouth and listening to what God is saying to us in all of this. I can't get over the fact that Hannah walked away and was sad "no more" even though her circumstances didn't change. That's what I long for and surrender my desires to my beautiful God. I used to think I had to abandon my desires but God just wants me to yield them to HIM and His purposes.

And where I am today is such a good place, a very hard one---but I am finding my God in ways I never knew before. I want God more than I want understanding. I want God more than I want guidance. It used to be guidance was what I was after---tell me what to do God with my kids, my ministry, my problems. But, no more. It's intimacy---that's what I am after. Sure, I need guidance. Sure, I need healing. Sure, I need friends. Sure, I need answers. But, in this new place of surrender I am not demanding guidance or understanding---I am coming away with a deeper holiness and that is God!!!! I'm not responding the same to my husband, my children, my world...I am finding such a better place than ever. Titus 1:1 - we are servants of the Word of God for the faith of His people and for godliness, changed lives. I'm so indebtedly grateful to HIM!!!

I guess I can abandon my storm shelter. Makes me think of the verse we read last week that we can live under the shelter of HIS Wings. Help my unbelief. Help my fears. Deal with my striving. What a gracious, magnanimous, awesome Father and Friend we have! He's here!

Last night I went to hear John Eldredge speak in Dallas and I could have left after his first two words and walked away with such treasure. He said that he thought his talk could be summed up in two words: COME CLOSE. God so spoke to me. Reminds me of Hosea 12:6 - Look to HIM and expect HIM to do much in your life. He's waiting for you. He adores you. The verdict is already out. So wherever you are tonight as the rains come down in our town and maybe in your heart, know this. Whatever is not happening for you is not a verdict of His love. You are secure by His Work, not yours. Please continue to pray for us---I need that so. We want to hear His Voice and we are desperate. Beth Moore said to me "your desperation is a gift." That meant a lot. He's longing to have compassion on us all - Isaiah 30:18. I can't thank you enough for your prayers. My Love to you and your family, Bev

21 comments:

Kristin 4/17/2008  

Hi Bev! Once again you have spoken what Jesus wants me to hear to my heart as I read your words tonight. The part where you said, "I want God more than I want understanding. I want God more than I want guidance. It used to be guidance was what I was after---tell me what to do God with my kids, my ministry, my problems. But, no more. It's intimacy---that's what I am after." So struck a chord with me. Wow, I think that has been part of my problem...sometimes God feels far away because I don't feel like I have His guidance like I desperately want, when it's my relationship and intimacy with Him that should be my focus. I will continue to pray for your financial situation and his provision for your sweet family.
All my love ~ Kristin

Julie 4/17/2008  

Bev, I heard John was good, though we were not able to go when he came to Atlanta.

I am so glad that you are seeing God in the midst of these difficult times. I know you will look back one day and be amazed at how much He has done in you.

Your heart is His treasure...He sees your deep desire for Him and to be removed of striving...He's coming for you!!!

Love,
Julie

Julie 4/17/2008  

Bev, I'm glad you found me. It was good to hear from you again. I am so glad that my words were used by Papa. Sometimes I don't know if what I am writing makes any sense...I am glad it made some sense.

I hope you are feeling much better now.

Love,
Julie

CrownLaidDown 4/17/2008  

Sounds like you "got it," my Sister. Mmm Hmmm. Lord, thank You for Bev's pure heart towards you. Now I ask for you to cover her in the shelter of Your wing. May the blessings you have for Bev, for Bob and their family, LORD, may they fall.

Bev, I will be calling you...it has been a bit busy with kids home. But, my friend, I love you and am praying!!

"No my eye is not on the density of the storm, but on the Living God who controls every circumstance of my life. " George Mueller

Fran 4/18/2008  

Love you sweet Bev. Thanks for sharing this most true and important word for us all.

I'm always praying for you!
Always!

annie's eyes 4/18/2008  

One more day of training, one more day He asks you to wait upon Him. Draw near. Come close. A treasure of His presence awaits. He is so all through you, Bev. He has such good things in store for you and your precious family.
Our tornado shelter last night was a bed with a wimpering dog. She needed to draw close, and truly, not even I could comfort. "Consecrate yourself. For tomorrow the Lord will do WONDERS among you." You heart still sings, "From the Inside Out." Thank you for this timely word and beautiful post. Love you, Annette

BethAnne 4/18/2008  

Those kids are so blessed to have you for a teacher (and so are their parents)!!!!!

Laura 4/18/2008  

You are still on my heart, dear friend! I picture you, huddling in your shelter, waiting on God. Just like Elijah in the cave. I'm so glad you feel his presence through this storm, Dear One. I know it has not been easy. I love your John eldredge story...Come close. Stay close. Blessings, dear one.

Mary Lou 4/18/2008  

Sweet Bev, how love that "come close". Last night I had to keep quote "be still, quit striving". I got still and He was there. He is doing a mighty work in your heart and you are blessing Him and the rest of us by sharing your heart and what He is teaching. Praying that He will meet your needs and bless you daily with His presence.

Michelle Bentham 4/18/2008  

Bev,

We were standing in the front door watching the marble size hail pellets hit the sidewalk just beyond the safety of our front porch when all of a sudden the wind picked up and the tree across the street began to swirl in the most tornadic fashion... at which I swooped back toward the living room and ushered - more like cajoled - but whose really going to argue that point my girls into the laundry room where pillows and blankets awaited our retreat.

I sang, "Our God is an awesome God..." while my younger tried to read, and my older got fed up with me and walked out to join my husband who was sitting at the kitchen table doing a crossword puzzle. When the hail finally subsided and the wind seemed to die down I pulled myself up off the floor and invited my younger daughter to join me in checking to see if my husband and other daughter were "still alive!" She declined, "I'm not going out there if you're just going to make me come back in here."

Of course the were contientious objectors were fine, the lights never even flickered, but they could have - oh yes they could have. I had prayed for protection before the storm hit as a tornado swept down out of the sky near Aledo... That same storm passed over our house just a half hour or so later... Yikes!

Later I heard my daughter tell her friend on the phone... My mom totally freaked out over the little bit of hail we got. Yeah right! When she got home from work before the storm clouds were right on top of us she was shaking and freaking out as we watched the horizon of wall clouds move closer to our back door. We are two of a kind!

I would later recount the experience to my mother who laughed when she asked where my husband was during this most recent episode of "tornado drill!"

I told her he would not come into the shelter area if the house was trembling, he'd rather be blown away by the storm than take shelter.

I did convince him to help me clear out one side of the garage so we could pull the car in and avoid any potential hail damage that might ensue... He was not happy, but helped me just the same! I will take any small battle won, God kept His promise and I kept my common sense just in case He chose not to calm the storm this time!

Blessings sweet siesta!

Alana 4/18/2008  

That is such a great perspective on our time with God. I think I'm starting to get that thanks to you!

Mary Lou 4/18/2008  

Bev, did you send me an email? I received a notice in my email that there was mail that could't be delivered and it was from your address. Just wanted you to know that I didn't get it,in case you might have expected a reply. Hope all is well in your neck of the woods..we had some rain but no hail. Glad Britt got home safely.

Blessings on your week end.
Love, Mary Lou

Profbaugh 4/19/2008  

Bev,

I love your blog so much, because you my Siesta really get it. And you aren't afraid to put it out there for everyone to see.

What's so interesting about your explanation of your desire for intimacy with God, is that you're patterning it here by being "intimate" and "open" with us.

Your raw authenticity is such a blessing and has ministered to me more often than not. I may not comment often, but know that I'm around--reading every now and again and always praying for you.

Much love,
~Cheryl

Josh 4/19/2008  

Holy Cow. That storm was crazy wasn't it?

Susan 4/19/2008  

Praying for you Bev. He often asks us to wait. But the blessing WILL come.

Come close. Oh, how that pierced my heart.

jennyhope 4/19/2008  

I so needed to read this post and I am so longing for intimacy with Jesus myself. I agree with what Beth said! Love you sweet Bev!

annie's eyes 4/19/2008  

Just dropping by with a prayer and a sweet joy reading your blog. Blessings abundant and much love,Annette

Stephanie (Ocean Mommy) 4/19/2008  

God so used your words in this post to speak to my heart...Thank you for sharing your heart...

Praising the Lord you are all safe! Sounds like a terrible storm..

blessings
steph.

He Knows My Name 4/19/2008  

much love to you sweet bev.

this post reminds me of the song

GIVE ME JESUS by jeremy camp

bethanne is right, and we are lucky to have you as a friend.

~janel

check my blog when you get can.

Abby 4/20/2008  

you have been on my heart and mind so much lately!!
ms bev i am always just blown away by your wisdom and desperation for our crazy-awesome God. you make me want to know Him more. thank you for that...

trying to get back into the commenting habit...i was so happy to be posting and reading again that i keep forgetting to say hey to people when i make it to their site! hope you are well and smiling :) have an awesome sunday!!!
love you!

Ang baylis 4/20/2008  

Dearest Bev,
You are on my heart so much during my days even when I don't drop by to tell you! I am so sorry you are having such a tough Season (to say the least, right?) I will say an extra prayer for you tonight! Remember, Joy Cometh! So much love to you!!!
Angie xoxo

Praying for Our Friend Joanne Psalm 131:3 Waiting on God. Hope Now. Hope Always.

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I've met some amazing women through blogging. I would love to hear from you. My personal e-mail is:
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I have another blog where I blog daily as a small group of us read through the New Testament this year. It's called A String of Pearls. We carry each other on mats (when we just can't walk anymore) to Jesus and sweet things like that.

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