Thursday, April 11, 2013

A Conversation of Hearts

I feel like it's kind of weird that this is my third blog post and I haven't really written about the kids.

Well, that's coming... I promise. 

But, the more I think about it, the more I am aware that my experience here this time was neither shaped or dominated by the kids. Part of that is because many days my interactions with them are limited to the time it takes to walk between the front door and my office... when it takes longer than two minutes, it's because I've ended up having to herd runaway children back inside, mop pee off of the stairs or fish toy cars out of the toilet. 

But really. You'll soon see that they have inevitably contributed greatly to my experience, but the truth is that these past few months have been marked more by significant experiences with Jesus than by memorable moments with the kids. 
Some of the staff get together every Sunday night for community prayer. One of the songs we 'sang' the first night I went to pray was "The More I Seek You" by Kari Jobe. I'd never heard it before, so I just had to listen. It captured the things that Jesus had been inviting me to experience as I waited (for what seemed like so long!) for things to come together for me to come. And the invitation seemed to carry over to my actual time here. And it has. 

The invitation has been to be with Jesus.... to trust him more intensely, to press harder into him, to be intentional about making space to rest in him, to find protection in him, to pursue healing in him and to find peace in being present in the present with him... to be with him in the moment every moment. That's not to say that Jesus was only semi-present before, but the invitation was to be constantly intentional about being aware of his working and his character in everything that happened. And the Spirit has made this abundantly known.
The more I seek you 
The more I find you 
The more I find you 
The more I love you 

The more I've been intentional about seeking out where Jesus is and what he is doing, the more he has revealed those things to me. That was also helpful to experience in all of the really hard things I've been bombarded with recently; these past few months have undoubtedly been some of the hardest in my life, so I've had to spend a lot of time bringing all of the things to Jesus. The invitation from Jesus in that for right now has been to just sit with him in things... to rest in him... and to feel deeply. For someone that often just wants to fix things right away, believe you me, this has required a lot of discipline and intentionality. It's also why this is a thing. I anticipate that the next invitation will be to start to respond passionately to some of these things, but for now it is to wait and to let my faith run deeper. At first I think I thought that was kind of weak, but now I am aware that the things I learn and internalize about the character of God during this time, will shape the way I respond to the things to come. Well, I am aware that I am experiencing these things now so that I can be prepared for what's next.

It's no secret that the more time you spend with him, the more you come to know him. And the more you come to know him, the more you love him. It's really true. 

And it's happened. 

[*Disclaimer: I don't normally do this, but in the interest of including people in my experiences here...*] I tried to explain it in my journal a couple of weeks ago and the best way to explain that is to just share what I wrote:

"...I know I still have a lot of things to work through before Jesus is the sole object of my affection, but sometimes - well, often - there's nothing I desire more than to just lie there or curl up and be with Jesus.  

I want to sit at your feet
Drink from the cup in your hand
Lean back against you and breathe 
Feel your heartbeat

And every time I do that, Jesus comes and sits there with me. Well, let's be honest: Jesus comes and holds me. 

As I work through some of this stuff, there's nothing that I desire (or need!) more than to be held by Jesus. And as he holds me, as we sit there, I feel his heartbeat. 

His heartbeat tells me that I am loved and that I am deeply valued by him. 

His heartbeat tells me that I don't grieve alone; that he was grieving for me even before I could grieve for myself. 

His heartbeat tells me that he is sufficient; that he will give me the things I need to keep going; that he is the reason I press on. 

He heartbeat tells me to continue to press into him mas fuerte. That he will not fall over if I slump into him. That he will hold me upright. 

His heartbeat gives me hope: Hope for healing, hope for restoration, hope for beauty from ashes. 

His heartbeat says, "Peace", telling me that he desires to quiet my soul in the busyness and to soothe my fears in the pain of hard things. Telling me that he desires to bring me rest - that he desires to be my rest in the middle of this colossal storm. 

His heartbeat tells me that he will protect me; that he will hide me away in the shelter of his wings; that he will tuck me under his arms and keep me safe. It tells me that he deeply desires for me to lay down the attitudes and behaviours that I've cloaked myself in, in an attempt at self-protection, and come take shelter in him. This calls for vulnerability and authenticity: and it not only makes them okay, it also makes them worth it as they cultivate community.

His heartbeat tells me that he will someday bring me justice

His heartbeat reminds me that he is faithful to my heart's desires. 

My heart desires a lot of things, but it mostly desires him. 

This love is so real 
It's more than I can stand 
I melt in your peace 
It's overwhelming "


  1. Dear Cheralyn, this is beautiful. and so true. I am so glad for all the things that Jesus is saying to you, remember he is good! and that, yes, you can trust his heart. His heart is good, my friend. I miss you so much!

  2. A pleasure to read your heart's feeling, it comes across as full of our Jesus. I will always feel connected with you Your family casa de Fe and that first mission trip with the rest of our team. Patti Sue has been called there to be the hands and feet of Jesus to love those in her reach. So glad you get to be there also. Looking forward to reading more updates from this special place with amazing people. Love hugs and prayers to you and the of them.