“I have gifted you with fragility, providing opportunities for your spirit to blossom in My Presence. Accept this gift as a sacred treasure: delicate, yet glowing with brilliant Light. Rather than struggling to disguise or deny your weakness, allow Me to bless you richly through it.”  Excerpt from Jesus Calling- August 12-by Sara Young

Somewhere around five to six years ago a very dear and special young lady handed me this book. It was a dark time in my life. A time when I had chosen to turn my face and my heart from God. Over time, God worked through Jesus Calling to bring my brittle heart of stone back to life. Ezekiel 36:26 says ” I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh.”  

Sometimes your heart has to be broken to pieces and put back together before it can become a heart of flesh. Tendered again. Alive again. Beating for Him. And as God slowly put me back together, bit by broken bit, my face and my heart turned back towards Him.

I have continued to read Jesus Calling over the years and I’m always amazed how God uses this little book in my life.

When I opened up today’s reading I saw where I had bookmarked it last year.  This too had been a year of brokenness. A different fragility.

Physical brokenness. Frailness. Illness. A place I had never been before. A place that was unfamiliar and unacceptable to me. A dark and frightening place filled with anxiety and fear. A place where I pitched many a “spiritual temper tantrum” before the Lord.

The place where God met me.

A place, through no choice of my own, where there was a surrendering. And we began a journey unlike any I had ever experienced before.

One year ago today, I was three days out from my first visit with Duke Medical Center. Weeks out from a diagnosis. Too weak to stand on my own. To weak to hold my head up for very long. His Words on the pages a mere blur through my distorted vision.

I fumbled my way through those words a year ago. Hanging on to them by a thread.

Clenching tightly in my heart God’s promised words, that He had a plan for me, a plan to prosper me and not to harm me, plans to give me hope and a future (Jeremiah 29:11).

I’ve been told that where I am today is most likely the best I will ever be, short of a miracle, they say. And yes, I do believe in miracles.

However, today is where I am. And it is a gift. A treasured gift. A path I love to walk, not because I am some good and godly person, or because I have it all together. I don’t. But because, through frailty and fragility,  I experience Him intimately on a daily basis.

Treasure.

I am blossoming in His Presence. My heart is awakened to the every day-ness of His provision for me. His faithfulness.

When people ask how I am, they always say “but you look so good”, while on the inside I feel like a jello jiggler with a mixed up brain.  And I wonder, is this the “blossoming” that comes from the surrendering to Him. The glow of His Peace in this place, that is anything but peaceful.

There is no struggle to hide my weakness. I need Him every moment, every day. Calling out to Him for the most mundane things.

It’s hard when I look back to where I was a few years ago compared to where I am, that’s for sure. But I wouldn’t know Him like I do today. And that would make me sadder than a mixed up brain.

Even though the fig trees have no blossoms,

and there are no grapes on the vines:

even though the olive crop fails, 

and the fields lie empty and barren;

even though the flocks die in the fields, 

and the cattle barns are empty,

yet I will rejoice in the Lord!

I will be joyful in the God of my salvation!

The Sovereign Lord is my strength!

He makes me surefooted as a deer,

able to tread upon the heights.

Habakkuk 3:17-19 NLT

“But it is when a crisis arises that we instantly reveal upon whom we rely.”

Oswald Chambers

Graced by God

Tammy Mashburn