This time last year I began NaNoWriMo, a month of daily writing towards a novel. I reached 7000 words and gave up. I love starting things…
This year I’m trying something different. NaBloPoMo.
A blog a day to encourage and develop creativity and writing practice – and no doubt post pictures when my words fail. So, for those of you who have signed up for my blog posts. Thank you. Especially for your grace as my posts sweep daily through your inbox. I do hope you will benefit somewhat from my writing experiment.
Last weekend was our Women’s Encounter God retreat. I have written about Encounter God in previous posts, click here for a more in-depth description. We are passionate about Jesus healing and freeing the whole person.
As Phil and I walked on Black Mountain on Monday I saw this.
Last year I wrote a blog about roots, here’s a snippet:
‘A few years ago I went to a friend for counselling and prayer. A line of thought she shared with me has stayed close. It is this. As one woven by our Creator, we are all designed with specific roots of character which define us. What can happen is that the darkness, choices…. life’s events can take this God given root and twist it.
Here are some examples of twisted roots.
*You protect those around you with your silence over challenging behavior. Could this be your God given root of integrity is gnarled.
*You are bolshy, even arrogant. Has your root of boldness been twisted?
*You fear confrontation, you allow compromise. Has your root of being a peacemaker wandered?
*You are a bully. But God’s plan for you was inner strength.
These God given roots of characteristic need to be straightened, healed and freed.
Back to this week…
Then there are other roots, sin, pain, abuse, un-forgiveness of others and self – these need to be uprooted to bring transformation. If they are not uprooted, unhealthy growth occurs – those same patterns, behaviour and habits.
But how Michelle? How do I uproot? My own experience has been to revisit the pain. In going back to that place where the pain was formed. The 10 year old girl whose trust was betrayed. Revisiting that wound allowed me to fully forgive. I found that when the pain was revisited, I was able to not only forgive but also picture Jesus standing besides me while the wrong was taking place, and more importantly think about how He felt about what happened. That is when the healing came. This isn’t to revisit the same physical place but rather the memories a place in my mind where the pain took place.
And then following the uprooting, that wide, raw, gaping place. Jesus pours in His love…and we begin to change, forming new behaviour and habits.
‘Should we not see that our root is right, before expecting flowers and fruit?’ Scraps, Amy Carmichael
Uprooting, though painful, brings transformation.
Encounter God is not a ‘one weekend fixes all’ event, how could it?
Encounter God gives us the tools to live in a daily place of confession, repentance and deliverance. With one another – in community.
If we confess our sins to God, we are forgiven but James 5:16 says ‘confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed.’
As ever, the stories that came from this retreat were beautiful, many healings – especially when people forgave themselves.
Verses to encourage you:
‘You’re blessed when you get your inside world—your mind and heart—put right. Then you can see God in the outside world’ Matthew 5:8
‘But blessed is the man who trusts me, God, the woman who sticks with God. They’re like trees replanted in Eden, putting down roots near the rivers. Never a worry through the hottest of summers, never dropping a leaf, serene and calm through droughts, bearing fresh fruit every season.’ Jeremiah 17:8
My counsel for you is simple and straightforward: Just go ahead with what you’ve been given. You received Christ Jesus, the Master; now live him. You’re deeply rooted in him. You’re well constructed upon him. You know your way around the faith. Now do what you’ve been taught. School’s out; quit studying the subject and start living it! And let your living spill over into thanksgiving. Colossians 2:7
And a final challenge…
‘If we are to be anything, we must bury ourselves deeply, and let Jesus take complete control.’ Andy Donaldson, Church Planter, Theologian.
See you tomorrow!