I bought these ornaments a few months ago, hoping that this was the year.
That I could wrap them up and give them to my husband and mom, and when they would unwrap them, they would be unwrapping a miracle. The one we’ve been praying now for eight years. I know healing is my inheritance because of Jesus. He paid such a high price for me to be healed. I know more than ever that truth, and that we will see that healing manifest.
I was just really wanting it to be this year.
December brings with it so much.
Unmet expectations for so many. Dreams that seem to vanish with the sunlight. The year coming to a close for many feels hard, because maybe that one thing that was supposed to happen, didn’t. It also brings a big sigh of relief, for so many who have walked through fire this year. The thought of a new start, a fresh wind, a turning of the calendar can sometimes make us breathe a little deeper.
But December also brings with it so much hope. A little Baby that came to change the world. God with Us, forever. An Everlasting Father, who never rejects us but gives us a ring as a sign of His covenant. The Prince of Peace in the midst of actual chaos. And Jesus, Christ in me, the Living Hope, Himself.
And Hope, that’s where I choose to live.
I’m not denying the fact that another year has passed, and the miracle we’ve been contending for is no where to be found. I’m not denying the ache, the sting I feel when the Christmas present I really wanted to give to my husband and children this year isn’t a possibility. I’m not denying that it doesn’t hurt or my heart doesn’t feel incredibly tender.
I’m just refusing space in my heart for disappointment to fester. I’m refusing the opportunity for me to hold offense. I’m refusing to trust my feelings over the Truth of God’s Word.
I can’t get stop thinking about this passage I read several weeks ago. John the Baptist was a miracle babe himself. His mama, Elizabeth, was barren. And after an angelic encounter with his dad, Zechariah, God did a miracle in Elizabeth’s womb, and she became pregnant with John. He was a Holy Spirit fire kind of guy. Pretty radical dude. But he carried a promise and very important calling on his life, and that was to prepare the way for the Messiah. He readied God’s people. He laid down his entire life for the cause of Christ.
Jesus came and the greatest moment of John’s life happened when he got to baptized Jesus, the One He spent his very life waiting for. Jesus began his ministry and John got thrown in prison. He asked his disciples to go to Jesus and ask Him if He was really the Messiah. Because all John could see with his eyes were four walls.
I’m sure he was thinking, “Did I miss it? Did I spend my entire life on this man? Was He really the One?” When his disciples got to Jesus they asked him John’s question. Jesus didn’t answer them for a while. He just healed the sick, raised the dead, opened blind eyes, and cast out demonic spirits.
But what he said next, has absolutely wrecked me.
“Jesus answered them, “Give John this report: The blind see again, the crippled walk, lepers are cured, the deaf hear, the dead are raised back to life, and the poor and broken now hear of the hope of salvation! And tell John that the blessing of heaven comes upon those who never lose their faith in me - no matter what happens!” Matthew 11:4-6
In another translation Jesus says, “Blessed are those who are not offended by me.”
I’m certain so many of God’s kids say in a place of offense with Him. When we are offended by God, when that miracle that we’ve asked for hasn’t manifest, or we didn’t get that job, or we’re still in the same financial place, or when nothing seems to be turning around, when we stay offended with God, we lock up heaven’s blessings.
I don’t know about you, but I need all of heaven’s blessing in my life.
And not only that, but Jesus is my very best friend. So rather accusing Him of not seeing this miracle manifest in my life, I’m choosing to believe every word He says. Because I love Him. So deeply.
I think our level of offense shows a very accurate measure of our love.
Love is the foundation of trust. And if I can’t trust what my Father says, there’s only a certain level of friendship I can experience with Him.
I want to be the one that believes every word He says. I want to be the one that never looses my faith in Him no matter what happens. I want to be the one that truly takes Him at His Word. For no other reason than love.
Because I love Him, desperately.
I was in worship a few weeks ago. I had my eyes closed and the Holy Spirit started showing me so many things. I suddenly realized that I see so much better with my eyes closed. It sounds confusing to most, but to me it makes perfect sense.
“Now faith brings our hopes into reality and becomes the foundation needed to acquire the things we long for. It is all the evidence required to prove what is still unseen. This testimony of faith is what previous generations were commended for. Faith empowers us to see that the universe was created and beautifully coordinated ny the power of God’s words! He spoke and the invisible realm gave birth to all that is seen…And without faith living within us it would be impossible to please God. For we come to God in faith knowing that he is real and that he rewards the faith of those who give all their passion and strength into seeking him.” Hebrews 11:1-3, 6
So when my circumstances look nothing like God’s Word says they are supposed to, I have two choices. Hold offense and block off the blessing of heaven, or close my eyes and see more clearly with the eyes of faith, believing every word God says is true.
Because our circumstances are true. But they are not the Truth. The Truth is what God says and the cross of Jesus has the final word.
And if what you see with your eyes isn’t good, it just means you’re story isn’t over. He only writes good endings. So when you’re tempted to look at your situation with your natural eyes, just close them and see with the eyes of your heart.
Because I promise you can see better that way.