I snuggled under a blanket with coffee in hand and a stack of well loved, leather bound books beside me. Any day that includes coffee and reflection is music to my slightly introverted and massively introspective soul. Sometimes, I need to reflect on where I’ve been to know where I’m going.
Though distinguished in pattern and color, certain characteristics unite the beloved tomes. I have a decided tendency to underline key words, pepper the pages with exclamation points, deem paragraphs unnecessary, and draw boxes around the really important stuff. Smudges and tear stains bear traces of emotion, of words flowing from heart to page. My handwriting remains the same, and the pile grows larger with each passing year.
It’s just ordinary ink on paper.
I’ve written in journals for almost 20 years. Over time, themes weave from page to page. God’s sovereignty is a bright blue thread prominently stitched across the design. I couldn’t see it in the moment, but hindsight’s vantage point adds perspective. His faithfulness is gold mingled with pure, silver grace.
His love is saturated red, another color sweeping across the years. Its pigment deepened as my understanding grew. Provision, security, and longing each play their parts in shades of green and yellow. Life felt beautiful in the purples. On other pages worry and fear add splashes of gray. Repentance is a fiery orange. And then there is the black of grief. Some pages have lots of black.
All of these intertwine against the backdrop of brilliant white, a dazzling radiance, enhancing the beauty of every other stitch. Even the black.
A brilliant white–Jesus. The cross. Redemption. Lavish grace upon grace.
“…to the praise of His glorious grace, with which He has blessed us in the Beloved. In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of His grace, which He lavished upon us, in all wisdom and insight making known to us the mystery of His will according to His purpose, which He set forth in Christ.” Ephesians 1: 6-9
I turned page after page relishing the prayers and memories. In the depths I cried out. To green pastures I was led. In the torrents I clung to the Rock. Beside the still waters I sang with praise.
My journals will probably never be read by the masses. And frankly I’d be appalled if some pages were. Yet if my ramblings last into eternity, let dazzling white be the focal point, the element unifying and completing the design!
It’s just a stack of well-worn leather books. Nothing special. Ah, but perhaps you need really look with eyes to see. A glow of intense, rich color streams from the pages, replacing ordinary ink with embroidered works of art.
I didn’t make it a beautiful thing. But God did.
“Father right now life feels flowery. ‘The sea of life’ is calm. Spring is here literally and figuratively. So much redemption and so much beauty radiates right now. Hope blossoms. The possibilities spread before me like a great feast.. Storms aren’t raging, and the sea billows don’t roll. But in this time of abundance I’ve noticed something. How tempting it is to neglect running to you with the same intensity as when the world felt blackest black. I haven’t always pursued you first. Lord ever draw me closer to you. Be the Captor of my affections even in the springtime greens. Keep me longing for my First Love.”
Keep me longing for my First Love.
Writing helps me process. Reflecting makes me remember. God is the weaver, the master designer. And He never chooses the wrong color.
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