The Gift Of Returning

 

Life has an interesting way of bending in on itself.  Instead of days stretched out in a long straight line one after another, they seem to have patterns of retracing.  Of looping back around.  Where I discover I am back in the same place I thought I’d left a long time ago… spiritually, emotionally, even physically.

Like being lost in the woods, my eyes search for the path to take and I discover I have passed this land mark before.  Felt these feelings, had these thoughts… and frustration, discouragement, disappointment settles in.  I hover on the brink of familiar pits and hidden traps.  Wondering, how on earth can I be here again?

I stop and talk with God.  What have I left undone? Where have I failed?  What did I not complete? Thinking through where I could have possibly taken a wrong turn, trying to think through reasons for returning… Where did I fail to trust? To follow?

And when I pause long enough to listen, to really look around, I gain a grain of understanding.

Though I am back in familiar terrain, there are subtle differences, in me.

God has brought me to a new place, familiar, but healed over.  He has developed in me the right amount of health to bring me here: back to places where wounds were first inflicted and sins were first committed.  It is here that I feel the old ache and take notice of those scars, those healing places.  Here is where I discover the multitude of grace, and the miracle of God’s work in me.  It is here that I look long enough to notice… to see the changes He has wrought in me.

My life, bending back in on itself, as if bringing part of me under the light of a lamp. Reminding me of what was, revealing to me all that is, refreshing in me the miracle of hope for what He will continue to do.  A gift of returning.  Remembering a place I once came from, and measuring the inches my heart has expanded.  Shining the light of repeating on cracks I couldn’t see then that need attention now.  Basking in the grace revealed, glimpsing the gentleness of His methods, resting in the hope restored.

The gift of viewing first hand that none of my pain is forgotten and none of my toiling to grow through it is waisted.  That every tear I’ve shed watered new life, a covering over, a healing within.

Before I leave the light of this Lamp-of-Uncovering, this place of past, I take in the joy. Hovering on the edge of old entrapments I can rejoice in the strength He has provided. Knowing that when I once again revisit here I will only be that much more grown and able.

“All things have their season, and in their times all things pass under heaven.” Ecclesiastes 3:1

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