I was standing hands up, pouring worship out of the depth of my heart. Praying & praising my Daddy. Asking Him to share His message with me, surrendering the chaos of the weeks, months...year that I thought had finally come to a close...at the top of a new mountain. "up out of that valley & where I can do this..." I whispered filled with excitement that my hubby had just gotten hired back to work with his local union. Immediately a very clear picture of me holding onto His robe, as He led me through a crowd...a never ending crowd, came to mind. On & on we went, the Verses in Matthew 9 came to my mind...
And behold, a woman who had suffered from a discharge of blood for twelve years came up behind him and touched the fringe of his garment, for she said to herself, “If I only touch his garment, I will be made well.” Jesus turned, and seeing her he said, “Take heart, daughter; your faith has made you well.” And instantly the woman was made well.
Matthew 9:20-22 ESV
I opened my eyes..."huh?...I don't understand??" I closed my eyes again & began to concentrate on His answer to my prayer. Again He showed me holding onto His robe through a crowd...then a memory came flashing into my mind. A memory of being a mom of younger children & even as a Nona with my grandchildren, me telling them "hold onto me...Don't let go!" Of course I was making sure they knew that there is danger to be aware of...would my Creator want any less??
Now, several months later I am understanding this message more. After several deep, dark valleys...I get it. He wanted to warn me, He wanted to remind me that He is always here, He wanted to make sure I remembered that ALL I have to do, is grab hold of Him & know that He is ALL I need, EVER. He was showing me that even though others who knew me before I surrendered my life to Him, may try to get me to back step...may try to lead me away from Him. They were more comfortable with who I was...they find it hard to have Jesus right up front, in their faces. Maybe they just don't understand & aren't in a place that they want to understand...yet. But either way, I would have to cling onto Him.
I've found that the more I surrender, the more He can do. I'm one of those people who would rather carry in EVERY bag in one trip, then to take the time & energy it requires to make several trips. When I met Jesus this is something He started reshaping in me. Instead of taking the easiest route, He's asking me to follow His route & it's not the easy route. He is asking me to take His route so He can teach me to "hold onto Him."
He gave me the choice...I get to choose. But once I choose Him, I can't go back. When I learn what He's teaching me I can not go back into the ignorance excuse. But each time I choose to answer His call & hold onto His robe & take His route, it's giving Him the chance to show me how to overcome the chaos...His way. When I give Him the valleys He can lead me up to the top of the mountain.
I think the misconception about being a Christ follower is that once we choose Christ, we will live in happiness forever, or sadness forever...the truth is God will be molding & shaping us until the day we return home to Him. There will be high mountain tops & deep, deep, difficult valleys, but God wants us to remember to hold onto His robe, ALWAYS not just in the bad times. The bad thing is that in the good times we forget Who the glory belongs to...it's in the bad times we reach out for Him.
Just for the purpose of tying up this message, let me share that the Monday after that vision, my hubby was laid back off. He ended up working 8 days before being laid off. So ALL my plans, went up in smoke...we are still in a valley, but this valley has opened my eyes in so many areas. I finally have learned that He will continue to allow the trials, even when my first choice in EVERY choice is Him...He knows I am only flesh & that until I join Him I will struggle.
So if you're feeling like a valley is extra deep & long, maybe doing what I do will help...looking in to make sure I'm holding onto His robe through the crowd, trusting in His timing, plan & word. If you're not reach out & grab hold of His robe & hold on tight immersed in His peace & joy even in the darkest hours.