This Sunday, the Pastor's daughter shared an encouraging message which included the following two things. First, a poem. Second, Isaiah 58:6-9. What I absolutely loved about her message was that God made us to glow. And that is a message God has long written upon my heart, yet I have been at a loss on how to walk it out. I am hoping that this year will be the year I begin to break out and shine. To not be afraid of offending people by being the best I am. To let go of the lie that I was meant to hide behind the scenes. As you can see below, that certainly is not God's intent. For you OR for me.
Our Deepest Fear
By Marianne Williamson
Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.
Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.
It is our light, not our darkness
That most frightens us.
We ask ourselves
Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous?
Actually, who are you not to be?
You are a child of God.
Your playing small
Does not serve the world.
There's nothing enlightened about shrinking
So that other people won't feel insecure around you.
We are all meant to shine,
As children do.
We were born to make manifest
The glory of God that is within us.
It's not just in some of us;
It's in everyone.
Isaiah 58:6-9 (the Message version)
"What I'm interested in seeing you do is:
sharing your food with the hungry,
inviting the homeless poor into your homes,
putting clothes on the shivering ill-clad,
being available to your own families.
Do this and the lights will turn on,
and your lives will turn around at once.
Your righteousness will pave your way.
The God of glory will secure your passage.
Then when you pray, God will answer.
You'll call out for help and I'll say, 'Here I am.'
quit gossiping about other people's sins,
If you are generous with the hungry and start giving yourselves to the down-and-out,
Your lives will begin to glow in the darkness,
your shadowed lives will be bathed in sunlight.
I will always show you where to go.
I'll give you a full life in the emptiest of places— firm muscles, strong bones.
You'll be like a well-watered garden, a gurgling spring that never runs dry.
You'll use the old rubble of past lives to build anew,
rebuild the foundations from out of your past.
You'll be known as those who can fix anything, restore old ruins,
rebuild and renovate, make the community livable again."
I'm excited that our church is going to start something similar here.
I can't wait to be a part of it.
God's restoration is beautiful, yes?