Finally, after two weeks’ worth of unusual busyness at work and the stomach bug going through there on top of that, I’m back. Thankfully, my most meaningful writing, from what I have observed, seems to come to me in those moments when I wonder what God could possibly have planned for all I’m enduring. At least, the pit I referred to in earlier writings isn’t bottomless after all! That, Psalm 33, and a book which some of you may have read, Chase the Lion by Mark Batterson, had a bit of something to do with that.
That is, that during that time, God used much to inspire me and the first source of inspiration for this poem came from an often-rich source of inspiration for writers: someone else’s writing! For those of you who know nothing about Mark Batterson or his work, he is the lead pastor at National Community Church in Washington, D.C., which you can check out via http://www.theaterchurch.com.
What is more, among the more popular books he has written include In A Pit with A Lion on A Snowy Day (2006) and its sequel, Chase the Lion (2016). My church is currently studying the sequel and, while we’ve studied the book, something he said about feeling stuck and not where one wants to be as a God-honoring dreamer resonated with me. Yup, I’ve felt stuck, but I didn’t expect to have to take his response into account as much as, well, the work shows I did. “Don’t despise the day of small beginnings!,” he said, and that struck a chord with me.
That was the start, anyway. Then, I pondered what he said about “genesis moments” earlier in the book: those moments in which one act of kindness, word of encouragement to oneself or another, repentance, baptism, reading a book- anything!- could lead to a life beyond one’s wildest dreams while honoring God. One must simply have the courage to take the steps of faith to honor God with his or her dream and life to make it a reality as God wills. That, too, struck me as something to consider, which further cemented my committment to being patient in the personal frustrations I have experienced recently.
The third piece of the puzzle that became the work was in a conversation with a friend about those frustrations. She encouraged me to keep pursuing my dreams and helped me to renew some older ones I had shelved years ago. Thank you, Nena; that means more to me than I feel I can express on this blog concisely! You’re amazing, my friend, and I thank God for you.
Finally, just when all of the frustration was starting to reach its peak and I felt that I must be crazy for feeling discouraged and doubting, God brought me to Psalm 33:18-19. I’m using the NLT version here since that’s my personal favorite, but I also recommend the NIV, NASB, ESV, NKJV, and MSG translations of the Word. That psalm says, in part,
“But the Lord watches over those who fear him,
those who rely on his unfailing love.
19 He rescues them from death
and keeps them alive in times of famine.” (Psalm 33:18-19, NLT 2015)
That was the final piece of the puzzle that showed me I needed to write and, perhaps, publish this piece, partly as a reminder to myself and partly as an encouragement to future generations, Therefore, here is the work in question, and I promise to keep writing as God calls me to do. 🙂
Finally, the pieces of my puzzle are falling into place
And I’m seeing my cave of Adullam for the strengthening of my faith/
And a much-needed training ground that God had made for His glory!
Perhaps the pain I had to bear was for my good
Perhaps, by my mistakes and sins that I’d undo if I could/
There was something I needed to learn- and I pray that all of us would.