Thursday, July 15, 2010

Standing Still Before the Thorns

Photo courtesy of Martin LaBar

I'm working on a little project which I am not at liberty to share at the moment. It requires much research on my part and I must say, I'm enjoying my time. I often come across things that may not help the project per se, but they help me. The other day, I got so sidetracked I forgot what I was suppose to be doing and ended up doing, well, I guess what I was really suppose to be doing. Funny how that works sometimes.


From Streams in the Desert ... August 16

In waiting, I waited for the Lord (Psalm 40:1, margin)

Waiting is much more difficult than walking. Waiting requires patience, and patience is a rare virtue. It is fine to know that God builds hedges around His people--when the hedge is looked at from the viewpoint of protection. But when the hedge is kept around one until it grows so high that he cannot see over the top, and wonders whether he is ever to get out of the little sphere of influence and service in which he is pent up, it is hard for him sometimes to understand why he may not have a larger environment--hard for him to "brighten the corner" where he is.

But God has a purpose in all HIS holdups. "The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord." reads Psalm 37:23.

On the margin of his Bible at this verse George Mueller had a notation, "And the stops also." It is a sad mistake for men to break through God's hedges. It is a vital principle of guidance for a Christian never to move out of the place in which he is sure God has placed him, until the Pillar of Cloud moves. FROM SUNDAY SCHOOL TIMES


I was reminded of a book I read to my children in our early years of homeschooling. We had a little tradition that if a big snow storm (aka blizzard) caught us by surprise, we would cancel school and spend the day together snuggled on the sofa reading a Lamplighter book from cover to cover. Yes, it took a couple of hours or so, but these books are quite difficult to put down. We'd finish a chapter and the kids would say, "Oh, read one more!" and we'd read another chapter and it would happen again and again until the entire book was read. Oh, those were wonderful times and memories I'll treasure forever.

One of our earliest Lamplighter books was called The Hedge of Thorns, written in 1819. This book made such an impact on my children that I am certain, to this day, they have never forgotten the story. This true story is written in such a way that the reader and listeners are captivated and drawn into this story about a boy who learns the hard way that choices we make can harm those we love most.

In some ways my life has been on hold for many months now. From time to time I have found great difficulty in dealing with the waiting. I can't tell you how many times I have wanted to take control and just do something. Anything but wait.

Have I ever mentioned what an impatient person Yours Truly can be sometimes? I'm sorry to say it's so true. They aint kiddin' when they say patience is a rare virtue.

I am so thankful the Lord is patient with me while I struggle and attempt to approach the hedge He has built in my life. Sometimes the circumstances are such that I don't always think it's there for my protection. I just think it's in my way. My way. I suppose that's why I am so thankful that when I feel the sting of the thorns, I move back. Unfortunately, sometimes as I wait, I so easily forget what it feels like to get stuck and find myself moving closer time and time again. I can hear Jesus saying to his disciples, "Are you still so dull?" [Matthew 15:16 ]

Lord, I am so dull. Sometimes it takes me a long time to get it. And stay put.
Please forgive my lack of trust and faith. My disobedience.
Please give me strength to wait upon you.


When we learn to wait for our Lord's lead in everything, we shall know the strength that finds its climax in an even, steady walk. Many of us are lacking in the strength we so covet. But God gives full power for every task He appoints. Waiting, holding oneself true to His lead--this is the secret of strength. And anything that falls out of the line of obedience is a waste of time and strength. Watch for His leading. S. D. GORDON

Must life be a failure for one compelled to stand still in enforced inaction and see the great throbbing tides of life go by? No; victory is then to be gotten by standing still, by quiet waiting. It is a thousand times harder to do this than it was in the active days to rush on in the columns of stirring life. It requires a grander heroism to stand and wait and not lose heart and not lose hope, to submit to the will of God, to give up work and honors to others, to be quiet, confident and rejoicing, while the happy, busy multitude go on and away. It is the grandest life "having done all, to stand." J.R. MILLER

Praying for patience and the Lord's leading,

P.S. Remember it is not a sin to enjoy the fragrance of the rose, but he who grasps after its beauty carelessly will reap the pain and suffering of its hidden barbs. Excerpt from Hedge of Thorns

1 comment:

  1. AnonymousJuly 16, 2010

    Brought tears to my eyes. Hugs to you sister-in-love.