What do you do when you come to the end of you?
Are you a knot tier who hangs on for dear life because you’ve run out of rope and hope? Or maybe you turn around, bow up, and get ready to attack whatever’s coming after you because you know there is always something behind you. Or perhaps, you’re the kind who angrily hunkers down ready to stand your ground because you don’t intend to budge an inch.
Or, maybe …
just maybe …
you give up.
The end of you can be a scary place, but I’m firmly convinced that’s where those of us who love God find our HOME.
Depression had me paralyzed not long ago when Ron announced we were going to the beach. He hasn’t lived with me for 39 years without learning the great good accomplished in my spirit by the sand and surf. If the truth be known, I think his spirit needed some reviving too.
A friend of mine at church asked me Sunday if I had been refreshed at the beach. I smiled at that word and told her that I had not been REfreshed, I’d been FRESHED. After my God-allowed test of depression led me to the end of me, I discovered a fresh approach to finding joy in the presence of God. Vividly picturing my own image of Jesus enabled me to put flesh on the Holy Spirit living inside of me.
My mind’s eye can now clearly see the color and style of His hair, His body type, the shape and color of His eyes, the curve of His smile, and that soft, gentle way He looks at me. I’ve seen Him sitting on the beach, standing at the rail of the condo balcony, and riding with me in my car. I talk to Him, and He talks back. He even loves to sing and laugh. I know it’s His Spirit speaking, but it sure helps to have a firmly established picture of Him in my mind. I even see what clothes He’s wearing – and it’s not a robe and sandals. No, He’s a relatable, barefoot Savior in jeans and a white T-shirt.
Now, I’m sure to some of you this seems a little far-fetched and out there – perhaps even a smidge irreverent. I understand that. But others of you know exactly what I’m talking about because you see Him as clearly, if not more so, than I do. You’ve told me you do. You hear Him whisper your name. You feel His touch when nothing else will comfort you. You’ve also seen that look that gently rebukes an unkind word or thought. Some of you have even smelled Him near you – a fragrance that is matchless and sweetly indescribable.
If you don’t have a clear picture of Jesus, I’d like to encourage you to create one. Begin by reading about Him once again in the four gospels. (You know John is my favorite – especially chapters 14-17) Just read about Jesus, and let His image seep into your mind one feature at a time. Pay attention to what you hear the Spirit saying to you as you read. He might remind, comfort, teach, or rebuke you, but whatever you hear from Him, begin to put Jesus’ face on those words. Then, talk to Him. Tell Him whatever’s on your mind, even if you’re mad at Him. Practice His presence.
I vacillated for too long between knot-tying, bowing up, and hunkering down. However, at the beach I came to the end of me, and I finally gave up. I gave up running from Love. I gave up fighting against God’s grace. I gave up the fear of not being good enough, and I firmly fixed my eyes on the One who is enough and makes me enough. And then …
I found HOME.
“Jesus answered, ‘If anyone loves me, he will keep my word. My Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him.” But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and remind you of everything I have told you.’“ (John 14:23, 26 CSB)