It is a delight to be the spouse of a hard working, joy-filled, dedicated man.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Have You Ever

read Joel?

The whole of it, all at once?

It is fairly easy, it is fairly small, but it is packed, as oft the Lord's words are for those who read them.

I'm no Bible scholar so I will not pretend to be one. But it has spoken so much to me over the years. I know that some think it inappropriate to personalize the stories from the Old Testament that are meant to be a historical telling or prophetic message for a nation.

But I could not help but see it personally. I can not help but continue to see it personally to know in my heart that the locust ate my earlier life.

I opened the gates of protection, I let them on my land and they destroyed all that was there, all that my parents and teachers had planted, all that in my early years I had cared for and nurtured.

The locusts devoured my life and laid it open and wasted, burnt, lifeless, shameful, the stench that rolled off of a life once devoted to God, to my beloved Christ, was high, it lay in complete and utter ruin. All this at my very own hand of carelessness, rebellion and disregard.

But God is truly amazing and He has restored all that was eaten, burned and trampled. All of it and more than what was stolen or given away. The reality of what I brought upon myself was hard to look at, the repentance was not easy or quickly done.

But God was good, "gracious and compassionate" with me. He did not take my life as He would have been so right in doing, instead He held me in His hand and waited for me, "slow to anger and abounding in love." He waited for me to come to Him, to repent fully and then He began to restore.

He quickly restored beyond what had been given at first to me that I in turn had given to the enemy to destroy. He has heaped far more than I could have ever imagined, far more than I would have ever known to ask for. He has gently but firmly taught me in His ways and continues His instruction. He has renewed my heart and sent bitterness from me. He has gifted me with strength to do the impossible and the undesirable. He has protected me. He has let me see. He has freed me. He has blessed my children, and put a song deep within my heart.

He has indeed restored what the locust had eaten.


Lisa @ Life with 4! said...

Lanny, i really needed this today! thanks for the insightful take on scripture.

and i enjoyed checking out your new sidebar! once again, you made me giggle. The whole section about blogs you read, that hit me as funny.

i guess it's been awhile since i've been here to read. i better do some catching up with Lanny, huh?

Are you enjoying the Fall? I bet it's beautiful on your farm right now.

Lisa @ Life with 4! said...

wow, Lanny. I have done some of that catching up reading. You've had some things to say!
You've made me think, ponder a bit. I've started keeping a journal to document a challenge i'm taking on. It's about striving to become more Christ-like, to put Him on the throne of our lives.
You've given me a few things to jot down to come back to again and study and pray about.

Sparky ♥ ∞ said...

I think that aptly describes all of us who believe in Christ. Thank you for the words of inspiration. Well done, and very edifying, my friend. :)

Vickie said...

Lanny, I love this post. I always try to apply scripture to myself personally. I believe that's what the Bible is for. I read the scripture whether instruction, history, or whatever, then I ask myself:
1. What does it say?
2. What does it mean to me?
3. How can I apply it to my life?

On #2, it might take some study and prayer and wise counsel, but gettin to #3 is what makes the Bible come alive to me. I think we HAVE TO apply it. Good post and I love how you've been so open and introspective and shared these verses with us.