Monday, May 4, 2020

What Kind of Gem are you? 
ALLEN means stone

      The Christian life as any long-suffering lover of GOD knows is sometimes an enduring pace, tunneling through the base of a monstrous heap of rock and earth above us.  We can't climb it, so we have to channel our way through it.  The cave we enter is frightening, lonely and with many intimidating noises and steep cliffs along the way that could relinquish us into an even more dire station in life.  

     One hand reaches out in front, while the other gropes along the rocky cave wall, trying to maintain some sort of navigation.  One foot sweeps the dirt in front of us, so as to not trip over any rock or boulder put in front of us by the enemy of GOD.  The scent of moldy air greets our nostrils as we perceive a trickling of water from above.  The drops into a puddle indicate that there is a spring or water source nearby.  We are hoping it is fresh water while our mouths are cotton dry, but we fear, as usual it's bitter water. The same bitter water we have drunk from before, not due because anything we did wrong, per se, but because we are sinners deserving of bitter waters. 
     We holler for guidance and the only thing we hear are our desperate pleas boomeranging back to us in hollow echoes.  Did anyone receive that call for help before it returned to us empty, without hope?  If we keep going, will there be light at the end, or should we turn back?  We believe with all that we have that the end of the darkness lay some of the most eye-bewildering gems and precious stones.  If we can't see anything, how are we supposed to dig for them?  How are we supposed to find and uncover them? 
     We have been assured they are in the cold dampness of this dark and frightening pathway because we believe every promise the Bible has given us.  We are guaranteed that our faith will lead us in this journey to treasures unknown to us and more immeasurable than we could have ever dreamed or imagined. (Ephesians 3:20) 
     So, we flounder along the way, hoping for not just a trickle of fresh water, but some kind illumination poking through the roof above, at least to shed some light on our path and find some glimmer of understanding as to why this cave is so dark and so long.  Other miners have testified to us who have trekked this path that it does lead to a glorious opening to the most plush green pastures.  We've seen the evidence in their lives after they have made it through their cave.  We can only hope that the opening to our cave will be half as wondrous as theirs.  
      The warming glow from the glorious sun we took for granted before, but love so dearly now, helps restore circulation and energy to our tired bones. We long to look upon the precious gems in peering out into the gorgeous emerald carpet of greener pastures just ahead, according to those Biblical heroes who went before us.  The blessings that GOD has in store for us are much like that, buried deep in the dark below the surface of the earth, safe and coated in the fertile soil so that no animal, bird, or insect can steal, stomp or eat away at it.  GOD is preserving our hidden gems of blessings.  He is lovingly crafting us for them.  We only have to trust that below our feet are the promises of GOD, waiting to be unearthed in His due time.  They are waiting to sprout up from the ground like a well-watered garden.   
The above description was the “vision” I saw as I read from Job chapter 28.  It’s as if GOD has buried our treasures, but we have to dig for them, as they lie safely protected from any prey that would steal what GOD has promised to us. . 
They sink a mine shaft into the earth far from where anyone lives, they descend on ropes, swinging back and forth. Food is grown on the earth above, but down below the earth is melted as by fire, here the rocks contain precious lapis, lazuli, and the dust contains gold. There are treasures no bird of prey can see, no falcon's eye observes. No wild animal has walked upon these treasures; no lion has ever set his paw there.
                                        Job 28:4-10
This verse reminds me of a verse in Joel, GOD promises to repay all the years the locusts have eaten.  It is in chapter 2.  Read the verses before and after it, because there is a requirement due in order to receive this promise.  You’ll find in in verse 12.  So we wait for the cold dark and dead winter of our lives to be over and for the spring of new life to burst forth.  While going through a difficult time in 2004, a stranger sent this passage to me.  Well, it’s 2020, and the winter is over, I’m still waiting for the flowers to appear, though, and I haven’t heard the cooing of doves, yet.  The Bible says that they are there, so, I am going to have to assume they are, no matter how I “feel.”   
"See!  The winter is past; the rains are over and gone. Flowers appear on the earth the season of singing has come the cooing of doves is heard in our land."   
Song of Solomon 2:11-12

There will come a day when we will walk out of our dark tunnels of our dreary days. Our fingernails may have some dirt underneath them from digging for our treasures, our clothes may be dusty, dirty or stained.  Our faces will be somewhat dimmed from the dark and our eyes will squint at the stinging bright light.  But, winter does come to an end.  It's a guarantee from GOD.  Sometimes, our only hope is in death, but even still, there is hope for those in Christ Jesus.  
Some of us will see the good green pasture in this lifetime.  The key is to be faithful to GOD to the task at hand, to do as He has asked, even if it hurts and the dirt in your fingernails doesn't come out ever.  For us ladies, that's what GOD made fingernail polish for!  When I started my writing career eight years ago, this was one of the promise verses GOD sent. 
I remain confident of this; I will see the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living.  Wait for LORD, be strong, take heart and wait for the LORD  Psalm 27:14

So, I will wait and let the LORD buff me over and over again so that I can become that stone He intended, the shining one, the one where all the rough edges are finally smoothed out.  After all, Kristina means, 'one who follows the LORD, Louise means, 'famed warrior, and Allen means 'stone.'

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