In the Shadow of His Hand

 

I crave sunshine.

 

Even though I can easily become over-heated, I still follow the sunshine around, and refuse to pull all of the blinds closed during the hot summer time.

 

I crave the light.

 

During the long dark days of winter, you might find me leaving lights on in an empty room, just so that I don’t have to walk into a dark room. I know, I know, this is not happy for the budget. 😉

 

Did I mention that I crave the sunny days?

 

So as I have heard Jesus calling me into the shade places, I have resisted.  Hasn’t the struggle been long enough, Lord?  Isn’t it time to enjoy the blue sky of summer now? Isn’t this what I have been waiting for?

 

At last week’s Rheumatologist appointment, we looked over my medication history, as usual. My body does not take kindly to the standard route of treatment. So we are faced with the possibility that our options are becoming very slim. I begin yet another trial this week, and if I am going to be honest, I am weary of it all.

 

Do you crave the light also?

Are you weary of the trudging that this world asks of us?

 

I heard another invitation today, in the midst of my resisting. I have been reluctant to face the woodland edge of our property this year, because my husband and I have not been up to the usual pruning that is required to keep back the encroaching wildness. But to that very edge is where the invitation was ushered.

 

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We’ve been paying kind neighbors to mow the lawn, so the grass was soft beneath my feet, as the trees made a canopy over my head. There in the hushed stillness, the invitation could not be ignored any longer.

 

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I am the light of this world, but I have created the shade as well, my daughter. I save my choicest gifts for some of the hardest places.

 

And I knew that I could not resist the shade of His presence any longer.

 

Like an apple tree among the trees of the forest
    is my beloved among the young men.
I delight to sit in his shade,
    and his fruit is sweet to my taste. Song of Songs 2:3 NIV   

 

What if my weary searching for sunshine has blinded my eyes to the gifts reserved for resting?

 

What if my longing to be filled with strength has only come so that I would long ever more deeply for the Sufficient Strength of the Holy One?

 

I long to dwell in your tent forever
    and take refuge in the shelter of your wings. Psalm 61:4  

 

I heard the stirring of those wings above me. In the edges of the woodland glade, the birds roost and sing to each other. There are days I can feel their echoing sounds deep within my own chest. For I know that after all these many decades, I am only a small bird, the daughter of my King. It is HIS shade I want to run to now, HIS wings under which I take refuge. There before me lay gifts of such beauty that could bloom only in the shade.

 

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Have you heard the rustle of those wings overhead?

If so, would you join me in praying?

 

Dear Lord Jesus,

Thank you that you have longed to gather us under your wings, and to give us your protection in the shady places.  Would You let us hear Your voice, sweetly calling to us? Would You soften our hearts to lay down our own images of strength and sunny days? We admit that we are so weary of the search. We come into Your presence now, and we bow before You here. In the shadow of Your wings is where we find our peace. In Your presence is our life.

In Your holy name we pray,

Amen

 

 

 

 

In obedience to His calling, I will be taking a blogging break for all of July.  I will still be visiting at your spaces as the Lord allows, and sharing at my Instagram and Facebook pages now and then also.

 

May you have a Blessed Summer!

 

I am linking with:

#LMMLinkup

#Teaandword

#Tellhisstory

#TuneInThursday

39 thoughts on “In the Shadow of His Hand

  1. Oh Bettie, you don’t know how much this post spoke to the innermost longings and weariness of my heart. Though we have had welcomed rain this month, last week was disastrous for some. We had nearly 7 inches in two days. Now today is another dreary, rainy day. I was just feeling depressed as I so crave the sunshine. Thank you for reminding me of the truth that even though Jesus is the Light of the World, He is in the shade also. The verses, God’s whispers, your prayer, and your entire post have encouraged my heart. Thank you, dear friend. I pray you will have a peaceful break, resting in the shadow of His wings. May God bless the new trial of treatment and also give your husband further healing. Love and hugs!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dear Trudy, Oh my heart is so touched that you found encouragement here. You have brought tears to my eyes, as I know how weary we each have become through these long days! And I so agree, that while those rains are so necessary, the flooding can wreak havoc on everything around us. I pray that Jesus is bringing you sweet grace notes during your break, and uncovering special gifts for you too, my friend. I appreciate your prayers for myself and my husband so much! Love and hugs to you Dear Friend! xo

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  2. Rich words indeed…

    What if my weary searching for sunshine has blinded my eyes to the gifts reserved for resting?

    What if my longing to be filled with strength has only come so that I would long ever more deeply for the Sufficient Strength of the Holy One?

    Sent from my iPhone

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    Liked by 1 person

    1. I am so thankful that you found encouragement here in these words! What a blessing our Lord brings to us as we allow Him to show us the gifts of His choosing. He truly knows what is best. Blessings to you!

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  3. So beautiful Bettie. Resisting is such effort! When we don’t resist, we can just rest wherever the season has us. Oh, I can be a resister to the shade as well! Or trying so hard to find the sunlight when the shade is where I am to bloom. Wonderful analogy and thank you for a peak into your garden!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dear Lynn,
      Oh, thank you for your insightful comments. Yes, we think it’s easier to resist and go our own way, but it is so much harder than just relaxing into our Father’s arms! And He does bring such beautiful blooms into the shady places too, doesn’t He? I am glad you like gardens, there is so much beauty that God has there for us. May you be blessed this summer!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Dear Bettie, I love this description of your journey of seeking light and passing by the shadows. How gentle Our Lord leads us where He wants us to go. He is pleased with you for obeying and taking the blogging break. I will add you to my prayer list by my chair. May He bless your soul as your rest in Him. xo Julie

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dear Julie,
      Thank you so much for your prayers for me during this rest time. I so appreciate them, and pray that I will indeed let the Lord lead me into His shady places. You are so right that He is gentle with us! How thankful I am that He carries us when He sees our weaknesses. May you have a blessed summer, my poet/friend! xoxo

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  5. So beautiful, Bettie. God is so good to lead us into His rest. I will be joining you. Praying for you and Barry as you rest together and for God’s peace to keep guarding your hearts in this time of waiting and unknowns with the meds. Sending much love.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dear Anna,
      Oh, I so appreciate all of your prayers for myself and Barry. And such a sweet thought to know that the Lord is calling you to rest at this time also. He weaves our lives together, in and out, for such beautiful purposes of HIS. May you feel Him covering you with His wings there also. Love and Hugs!

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  6. I will miss your sweet presence here, dear friend, but I am so thankful God is calling you aside to rest a while and receive new things from Him. Oh, that looks like such a pretty place to pray in the picture! You are such a blessing to me. I am praying for you and sending love and hugs your way!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dear Cheryl,
      Oh thank you so much for your prayers! I am so blessed by your praying for us! I will miss this connecting place also, but I hope to check in now & then at your site too. You are such a comfort to me also. I am grateful that the Lord does call us to Himself. Hugs & Love to you Dear Friend!

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  7. Dear Bettie, I am definitely a light seeker, too! My house doesn’t let in as much light as I’d like, but I try to open curtains when I can. And I can always go outside to get more light. 🙂
    I can totally understand about the encroaching wildness on the property. I almost feel like we are in a jungle sometimes. Hopefully we can tackle it little by little.
    What a treasure to find that beautiful bloom in the shade at the edge of the woodland!
    I’m so thankful to have you as a dear friend and for your encouragement. Blessings, love and hugs to you! xoxo

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dear Gayl,
      Oh, I knew you would understand about the ways the woods tries to envelope us! 🙂 As much as I love the sunshine, those woods are very special too, aren’t they? And how sweet to know that we are also kindred light-seekers. There is something so cheering about the sunshine. But I know that the shade is filled with God’s gifts of mercy too. Thank you for all of your prayers and encouragement, dear sister/poet/friend. Blessings, love, and hugs to you too! xoxo

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  8. Thank you sweet Bettie for this beautiful invitation. It’s easy to resist the call of Jesus but He is persistent and patient. I am so glad you took that short walk into the shadows. Jesus was waiting and ready for you. What a blessing. Your words have filled me with such hope and encouragement today.

    Praying for you as you begin a new trial and take some time to step back and rest. Sending you love and hugs!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dear Mary,
      Oh I am so glad that Jesus is so persistent and patient with us! And yes, there He was, waiting and ready for me in the midst of the shadows. I am so thankful that you found hope and encouragement here. You have brought that same encouragement to me so often. Your prayers mean so much to me, thank you! Love and hugs to you also Dear Friend!

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  9. Dear Bettie – first I am sorry that your body isn’t taking the normal route of treatments and that you are on an other trial. I am praying for you my sweet friend. It has been a while since I have stopped by for a visit, so I am glad to find we are neighbors over at #TellHisStory today. Also, yes, I am a light seeker.. i don’t do well with too many dark and gloomy days.. but I live in the rainiest dreariest state (WA) so when the sun is out, I want to soak it up and be outside too. Hope to see you over at my linkup #TuneInThursday this week 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dear Debbie,
      Oh yes, it’s good to see you visiting here again! And I have missed linking up with you too–my energy levels have dropped off so much through these last few months. I sure hope I can stop by this week, before my break begins. What fun to find another light seeker–that sunshine restores so much life in us! But I am grateful for the shade of His Presence that He calls us to also. Blessings to you dear friend!

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    1. Dear Barbie,
      It’s always so good to see you here! I am so thankful that the Lord touched your heart here today. He is so good to gather us under His wings! Blessings and Love to you!

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  10. I join you in that prayer.

    I link with you in the knowledge that the cool adventures of the shades of life sometimes brings us the deepest joy as we must rely on Him in a fresh surrender to His will. I have known my greatest closeness to our Savior right at the time when others pity me.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dear Linda,
      Oh, I appreciate your joining in that prayer so much. And what precious comments here: ” I have known my greatest closeness to our Savior right at the time when others pity me.” You have brought tears to my eyes. There is something so intimate in being with Jesus so close to His own dear shadow. May you be blessed today my dear cousin/sister/friend! Hugs & Love

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    1. Dear Wendy,
      Oh thank you for your sweet words, and for your prayers over this blogging break. Isn’t Jesus so good to meet us in these places of shadowy trials? He knows just what we need, even better than we ourselves know. You are in my prayers today too, my friend! Blessings, love and hugs to you!

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh, I can see your love of light in your beautiful photgraphs and artwork, Karilee! And isn’t it amazing how necessary the shadows are as well? Thank you for your kind comments and prayers! Blessings to you, dear friend!

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  11. Bettie, this is such a soul refreshing word! I drank it in greedily like one who has thirsted for too long. The sun and shade are both necessary, aren’t they? And I love the reminder of good things being found in shady places. These words especially spoke to me: “What if my longing to be filled with strength has only come so that I would long ever more deeply for the Sufficient Strength of the Holy One?” What if, indeed! Yes, that’s where our deepest soul yearnings receive their satisfaction. May you be revived, refreshed and restored by your blogging break. May you rest well under the glorious canopy of shade God provides for us weary sojourners. Blessings, love and prayers to you, dear friend. xoxo

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh Joy, I am so thankful that the Lord brought you refreshing here! I have been praying that for you over this summer. I love how you expressed that, “our deepest soul yearnings receive their satisfaction” in the Holy One. I know that you truly understand the ways that He supplies strength when we feel so depleted and at the end of ourselves. Thank you for being that example to me, of being able to set aside the normal routines and find that quiet place with the Lord. I appreciate your friendship and your prayers so much my Dear Friend! Blessings, love and hugs to you also! xoxo

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  12. I’ve read this twice and keep getting called away before I can comment!
    I’ve had years where I had too many lights on, especially in the winter. Sometimes you just have to do what you have to do in order to function with some semblance of normalcy.
    Beautiful lesson on withdrawing into the shadow of the Most High and drawing near and dwelling in Him! What a privilege to come to know and love Him more!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dear Ruth,
      Oh I’m glad to know that I’m not the only one who turns on too many lights! 🙂 He is so good to meet us in the sun and in the shadows. It truly is “a privilege to come to know and love Him more!” Thank you for being so persistent to comment here! I appreciate your thoughts and prayers so much. Blessings to you over this summer!

      Liked by 1 person

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