Quite a few months ago my husband (fiance’ at the time) and I were on a 4 hour drive heading across Oregon to visit his daughter who is a nurse in Pendleton. There is plenty of time to watch the scenery speed by, observe the geographical change from plush green, to gorge, to dry, to waves of wheat fields. Quietly, oh so quietly I sensed the Lord whisper to me, “Speak to the Corners.” Hm. Speak to the corners? Having no idea what He was referring to at first, I asked Him to SHOW me the corners. Suddenly I was made aware of the circular irrigation systems of the fields just outside my window. Studying those, I saw the ‘corners’. Tall green stalks of corn grew lush, all rowed in a circular pattern. Then there were the dry, almost intentionally forgotten corners of the fields. Mark and I discussed the waste, how profitable those corners could be if watered and attended to. Assuming the farmers ‘did the math’ and determined it wasn’t cost-effective to pay attention to the excess. The corners.
Over the course of these last few months, I have prayed about, mediated and asked the Lord to show me the corners of MY life. May I state, “WHAT WAS I THINKING!” He is ever so faithful to gently (most of the time) point us to things we have tucked back, WAAAAY back into the corners of our life, or corners of waste land, of no profit in our lives. Concepts, perspectives, views of ourself and even those of God, perhaps wrong doings, habits or hurts. These potentially residing in the darken corners of our heart and mind. As I pursued this, I was drawn to 1 Samuel 24. King Saul is in hot pursuit of David, David and his men are hiding in a cave. Far back, in the corner (if you will) they sat quietly. Saul comes in to the cave to … um… ‘relieve’ himself. Davids men encourage David, “THIS is your chance! Kill him!” (paraphrased) Can you imagine the split second thoughts that may have run through Davids mind? “Yes, you are right, I am called to be King, I end this NOW!” But NO! There in the dark corner of the cave, David stealthily crept forward, cutting off the small corner of Saul’s cloak. In this, David was quickly stricken with guilt, telling the men he was wrong to do so, and they too were not to harm Saul and took it further and revealed himself to the King. In short, Saul is humbled by the ‘chosen not to’ opportunity by David, Saul genuinely shares with David, “May the LORD reward you well for the way you treated me today. I know you will surely be king…” (v.19, 20)
May we too be rewarded well for the choices we make in the ‘dark corners’. May we consider our thoughts, motives and actions of what is hidden quietly in the corner. You know what I am talking about, that mindset that we dont DARE share with anyone, that hurt we are replaying over-n-over again, that habit that is so dark we keep it tucked way back, further still. Again David, he pens so honestly yet full of truth, “O Lord, You have examined my heart and know everything about me. You know when I sit down or stand up. You know my thoughts even when I’m far away.” – Ps. 139:1-2 He begins the Psalm with ‘You have examined…” he closes with ‘dont stop THERE’, “Lord, Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. Point out anything in me that offends you, and lead me along the path of everlasting life.” (v. 23,24)
God knows ALL, regardless of how often we try to tell ourselves, “This is private, it is MINE!” We try to deny the reality of our corners, and tuck it back, yet it keeps untangling itself as if it had arms like that of an octopus, reaching and grabbing, it becomes a constant fight. Us against the ‘corner.’ “Nothing in all creation is hidden from God. Everything is naked and exposed before His eyes, and He is the one to whom we are accountable.” – Heb. 4:13 In Jeremiah, God gets in their faces, “Can anyone hide from Me in a secret place? Am I not everywhere in all the heavens and earth?” says the LORD.” I have taken to heart this ‘corner’ experience, had to be honest with myself and FACE my corner, asking God to shine His light, Himself on my corners. It has been painful at times, I’ve had to yet again do some re-adjusting, taking down, throwing away and offering some things in exchange for His healing. I am considering those dry and not watered places, pushing them forward to reach the ‘growth’ areas, areas cultivated and nurtured, to be productive again. Peace, such peace. God is good!
I close with the words of John, the beloved disciple, the guy KNEW Jesus, he KNEW his God: “My dear children, let’s not just talk about love; let’s practice real love. This is the only way we’ll know we’re living truly, living in God’s reality. It’s also the way to shut down debilitating self-criticism, even when there is something to it. For God is greater than our worried hearts and knows more about us than we do ourselves. And friends, once that’s taken care of and we’re no longer accusing or condemning ourselves, we’re bold and free before God! We’re able to stretch our hands out and receive what we asked for because we’re doing what he said, doing what pleases him. Again, this is God’s command: to believe in his personally named Son, Jesus Christ. He told us to love each other, in line with the original command. As we keep his commands, we live deeply and surely in him, and he lives in us. And this is how we experience his deep and abiding presence in us: by the Spirit he gave us.” 1 John 3:18-24 (MSG, emphasis mine)
Speak to YOUR corner, YOUR intentionally forgotten corner.
In Him, DeDe (“Let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love & good deeds.” – Heb. 10:24)