Tuesday, February 4, 2014

i choose the flames

i was labeled rebellious when i got my tattoo.

people asked me why i would want something on my body that i can never get rid of.

so i told them the stories.

"you walk with me through f i r e."

[ you hold my every moment.

      you calm my raging seas.

            you walk with me through fire.

                  and heal all my disease.

                        i trust in you.

                             i believe you're my healer.

                                  i believe you are all i need.

                                       i believe you're my portion.

                                           i believe you're more than enough for me.

                                                Jesus you're all i need.
                 nothing is impossible for you.
                 you hold my world in your hands. ]

this is one of the few songs that has been a life anthem.

because in every moment, He has been there.

since the beginning.

since before i was born.

when my dad said "no more kids". and God said "one more". and planted me in my mother's womb...He was there.

when my dad left my family for another woman without saying goodbye, He was there.

when i was lonely...He was there.

when i became addicted to prescription drugs...He was there.

when i walked away from Him and cursed His name...He was still there.

when i was living in depression...He was there.

when my dad got cancer and there was no compassion in my heart...He was there.

when my dad apologized and asked for forgiveness and restoration happened...He was there.

when my dad died, and my heart broke...He was there.

when an old friend tried to kill herself...He was there.

when i ran to a razor blade for comfort...He was there.

when i knelt in front of a toilet and forced myself to throw up for the 5,000th time...He was there.

when i tried to take my own life for the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd time...He was there.

when people walked out on me....He walked with me.

when immature boys broke my innocent heart...He was there.

when my best friend was killed in a freak accident...He was there.

when i couldn't take another step....He walked with me.

when friendships ended and i felt alone...He was there.

when i left everyone i loved behind to follow His call...He walked with me.

with every accusation and evil word that has been spoken over me...He was with me, speaking life.

when i was told it would be difficult, maybe impossible for me to get pregnant...He was there.

in every moment...He has walked with me.

He has never left me. and He never will.

You walk with me through fire.

you never really understand the power of fire until you see it firsthand.

two summers in a row, i watched it ravage and consume different parts of my city and mountains.

it leaves nothing in its wake.

it mars everything it touches, and leaves only ashes for evidence.

i have walked through the fires of life.

fires that tried to kill, steal and destroy.

and He was there.

isaiah 43:1-2

"Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze."

this is a PROMISE from the most high God. and He does not break promises.

but fire isn't all bad.

fire purifies.

fire burns away the parts of us that get in the way of being fully His.

He has walked with me through the fires of life, but He has also walked with me through His all consuming fire.

He has burned away impurities and flaws that made me look more like me and less like Him.

just as a diamond starts out as an ugly rock, and as it goes through the fire it is refined, purified and fashioned into something beautiful that will last forever.

the Lord has walked me through His fire, and burned away the ugly parts. and He is fashioning me into something beautiful that will last forever.

and His fire is the best kind. the kind that burns and leaves something better in its wake.

it doesn't take away without giving something in return.

as i surrender my life to the flames, He gives me His life in return.

something so much more valuable and beautiful than anything i could ever possess.

but W H Y? why can't i know all this without putting it on my body in permenant form?

so i can N E V E R forget.

this is my Ebenezer stone.

i am making a memorial, a marker to the Lord's faithfulness and all that He has done in my life.

and who He has been. 

that i may never forget what He has done for me.

how He has loved me.

how He has poured His grace upon me.

how He has walked with me.

how He has changed me.

that i may forever tell the stories and shine a spotlight for His fame.

cause if its on my body in permenant fashion, i can never leave it on the side of the road. i can never forget. even if i get scared. even when it is hard to walk with Him. even when my flesh wants to go the other way. even when i have to make sacrifice and willingly choose the flames. i cannot walk away.

and i don't want anything but to walk with Him through all of life's seasons.

i choose the flames.

here i raise my Ebenezer, hither by Thy help i've come.

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