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What Isaiah 29 looked like for me.

When the words of Isaiah 29 first began to sink into my consciousness, I was shaking and scared, thinking about what I understood.  Isaiah was telling me that the Lord wanted me to just be real with Him.  He was telling me to say things to the Lord, to admit to Him the things I wasn't even willing to acknowledge to myself for fear they would prove just how horrible of a person I was.  He wanted me to just talk with Him about everything.  To let it all just come out - everything.  To not worry about whether or not I was being respectful by my parents' definition or following protocol as laid out by manuals, but just really get in there and let those strangers and terrible ones become known.

I had several hours of driving ahead of me and so I just began, as I was driving my big 18-wheeler down the road.  I started off very timid and scared.  The first thing I said was, "Please don't kill me if I'm wrong.  This is what it seems like Isaiah is saying you want me to do, so I'm doing it.  But please don't hurt me for it."  Then, very scared and almost in a whisper I said, "Is it okay that I don't feel super happy or grateful for the abusive home I grew up in?" And then I sat and waited - somehow I expected a thundering, "WHAT?!  How dare you?!  Don't you know all you have was given by me, you ungrateful wretch?!"  I really, truly expected something horrible to happen for feeling so ungrateful.  But it didn't.  Nothing happened.  Which emboldened me and I continued.

I talked about my mom.

I talked about my dad.

I talked about my siblings.

I talked about my "defects" - as I saw them at the time.

I talked about my abusive marriage.

I talked about my 13 miscarriages.

And when I say talked, I use that word very loosely.  After the first few minutes of nothing bad happening to me, my heart became more and more brave and things started coming out faster than I could keep up.  I cried and yelled and cried and screamed and cried.

About five hours after I began, I was on a roll.  Things were just flying out of my mouth - all of this anger and hurt and pain and judgment and frustration and doubt and fear - all of it.  Most of all, I found myself feeling betrayed by God.  Every single one of the hardest things in my life were not my choices.   They were caused by the choices of others or by things out of everyone's control and that seemed like He was picking on me.  I remember the last thing I said that shocked me back to myself.  I was crying and angry and hurt and I pointed one finger up at Him while I drove and yelled, "YOU need to repent!  You need to ask my forgiveness!"

That made me freeze in my tracks.  And instantly I started thinking, "I'm so sorry!  I'm so sorry!  I didn't know that was in there, I promise!  That was one of my strangers.  Please don't hurt me!"

And I sat and drove and waited for a lightening bolt to issue forth from above and consume me and my truck with me.

Nothing massive came or happened though.  Nothing scary.

Instead, I literally, physically felt an arm around my shoulders and heard a voice in my heart and in my mind.  He said, "I'm so sorry this has been so hard for you.  Would you like to understand?"

Through my weeping I exclaimed, "Yes!  Yes, I would!"  There was a mixed feeling of "It's about stinkin' time!" and relief that He was so willing to help me even after all I had just let out.

I came to understanding.  I learned doctrine.  My heart understood, I was converted.  And I healed.

My vessel was no longer too full to receive what He had for me.  I finally trusted Him enough to share ALL of my heart with Him, to share my strangers and my terrible ones with Him.  And He loved me through it all and then gave me what I needed to understand and convert and heal.  He helped me open my heart completely so that He could place within it the seedlings that will one day produce a fruit able to bear abiding in Zion.

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