In May of 2009, is when I really began to write down all the things I felt God was talking to me about. I really sensed that He had things to say that He wanted me to write down and share. Except for a small, select group of friends, I did not share my writing with anyone else. It is a very vulnerable place to be when you share deep, personal thoughts and feelings and I was afraid to do it. Honestly, I still am a little afraid to do it, but I will.
This first short writing is something that I experienced with Jesus on an annual women’s retreat that I go to almost every year without fail. It happens in the Northern California Redwoods and is so breathtakingly beautiful, if you have not seen and experienced it yourself, it is hard to describe. I love the smell and sounds of the Redwoods. The peace and power and majesty of nature in this area is really beyond compare and it is a perfect place to experience and connect with God on so many levels. My hope is that as you read this short bit, you will sense and begin to know how much Jesus delights in you and finds you lovely and fabulous and how He loves to just hang out with us, whether we are deep in the Redwoods or going about our busy days. He just digs you!!!
Here you go – enjoy!
I went to retreat in 2009 with a lot of expectations on God. I wanted to hear His voice and have Him explain and define things for me that I was going through, because this is what He and I have always done and it’s what I wanted Him to do again.
I have my routine down for each retreat. On Saturday afternoon, I go on a hike by myself to be alone with the Jesus. This year I planned to do the same thing I always do and go to the same place I always go to pour out my heart, hurt and requests to Him. Jesus, however, had something very different in store for me. I reached the general area where I usually sit, but it didn’t feel right, so I kept moving. The trail was so beautiful and peaceful I didn’t want to stop. Then I happened to spot a little open area off the trail, where I could walk down and sit right above the stream that runs alongside it. As I climbed down, I knew this was the place and my heart was overflowing with anticipation of meeting with my Daddy…what was He going to say to me, what was He going to reveal and work out and explain? I got myself comfortable and sat waiting for Him, examining my surroundings. This place was very isolated and quiet, almost undetectable by anyone walking along the main trail. Interesting, I thought, no one can see me here; I’m hidden. I kept waiting and asking Him to speak, telling Him that I was listening, ready and all set for Him. I heard nothing. So I waited a bit more, sitting and thinking that I was starting to feel very hot. I was annoyed that Jesus wasn’t speaking yet, because that was not how we usually do things. In the next moment, a very subtle, gentle, cool breeze began blowing over me at just the perfect temperature. I didn’t notice much of a breeze anywhere else, just right here. Interesting, I thought, it’s like this breeze is just for me. Then I sensed Him say, “It is just for you, beautiful one, how I love you.” Speechless. I had nothing to say. All my expectations were forgotten. All my carefully thought out conversations with Him were wrecked and so was I. All I wanted to do was worship and adore Him and I did. I sang to Him and praised Him. I spoke out all my love and deepest desires for Him and He absolutely received it, lavished it back on me and wrecked me some more. I asked Him if I was beautiful and graceful to Him, in all my stumbling and trying and falling and I sensed deep within me, that I know like I know, that I am all those things to Him and more. I was overwhelmed. I never saw myself like that. In my spirit I knew I had His undivided attention in that quiet, hidden away place by the stream, where no one could see me but Him and it was perfect.
My off key singing delighted Him, my praise and worship pleased Him and my spirit was so full of Him that I never wanted to leave that spot. I believe that He showed me the power of praise in that secreted away place. Abandoning myself to love Him and delight in Him, brought me more healing, peace and joy than time spent speaking out my hurt, fears and requests to Him could have done. Loving Him opened wide my heart to receive His love for me. I am learning to love Him on a new, higher level and am falling deeper into believing how much He really loves me. I knew He had something for me at this retreat, and what He taught me, on Saturday afternoon by the stream, was how to let Him love me. Will you let Him love you?