I stared into the wall at nights in my bed as a little girl.
It was actually the moonlight slipping into the room, through the edge of the window curtains.
But, I looked at how white the light pierced into the paint.
Yet, it wasn’t so bright. Because my room was still swathed in the quiet serenity of the dark.
The patch of light would float softly along my wall, like the arms of a willow tree’s leaves reflecting onto the water, yawning ever so slightly in the gentle breeze.
It felt good to me somehow to feel lost in that gaze.
Because I wanted all my troubles to go away.
Because for a moment, I would forget everything — the things that had been said and the me-who-I-became when they were spoken. Even the dreams that I wanted to dream.
And as I nestled my cheek into the pillow, wrapping my arms and legs into the folding crevices of the covers, I’d scoot my way close to the wall, where my bed found its home parked in one corner of the room.
I would feel peaceful coolness snuggled there.
It was there many nights I would cry.
And it was also there that I would confide in Jesus.
I would pray.
A Deeper Part
I grew up of course. And I don’t stare into the walls anymore.
But, I’m learning there is a deeper part of me that still wants to disappear — to find that place of numbness, where I separate myself from the truth of the things that bother me, from the words or concerns that don’t sit right in my heart.
I can distract myself in my grown-up, culturally acceptable ways.
I tell myself it doesn’t matter. That I should know better.
I stay occupied. Busy.
Or I retreat into my safe corner.
And just stay quiet.
But, I know deep inside, I’m not really free to live in the moment.
I’m really alone, ignoring my heart — just like that little girl, who had to learn to keep holding onto herself because that was simply what she knew best to do.
It’s a very weary feeling.
I wouldn’t have admitted so before, but I am beginning to understand.
When you don’t allow yourself permission for your heart to speak, you can never step out into the big wide world that God created for you — even as the waters rise and carry your soul through the desert or the storm.
Desert or storm, you and I were destined to walk with Jesus by faith — to trace the rainbow through the rain.
Through The Rain
We were just making our way back home from the coast, my husband, two boys and I. It was raining ever so lightly and I was sitting back, looking out into the great expanse of space along the drive through the winter landscape.
Then, without warning, our situation rapidly changed.
In less than a moment, the windshield was pounded by a smattering torrential downpour and although the wipers whipped violently side to side, to push it away, sheets of water continuously poured onto us, blurring our vision completely.
We all let out a collective gasp and as we drove through the last of the flash flood, it seemed our car jumped out into a clearing of mist and sprinkle.
And in the distance, ever so faintly, against the dark clouds gathering, a patch of white light broke through the canopy like moonlight, next to a mountain’s edge.
As I followed that light from the sky, down to the arid terrain of broken rock and mud — cracked like paint on a wall I once knew — I traced a rainbow through the rain.
Trace The Rainbow
The words I write to you this morning come from a place within me where I haven’t visited in a long time.
But, I’ve been wandering, to find my direction — to reconcile what I know in my head, with the uncertain realities of what I’m experiencing in my heart.
This happened because of unexpected changes, frought with anxiety, when what we feel we can deal with is not matching with our experience.
And it is all too overwhelming.
We cannot hold onto all these pieces.
And we are weary from trying to get ourselves to feel okay about it all.
Jesus brought a rainbow to answer cries I’ve asked in silence, as I struggled to reign in my heart.
Why can’t you keep a rainbow in the sky all the time, so I can see it? I answered. Why does the rainbow only last for a moment and then disappear?
You are my rainbow, Jesus answered.
It doesn’t need to stop raining, Bonnie.
Because I’m keeping my promise.
I’m staying right here.
Alive in you.
Trace the rainbow through the rain. He seemed to say.
Tracing the Rainbow
Sometimes we look for joy after the rain.
But, Jesus tells us joy is seeking us through the pain.
Because He is reaching out to touch us, even as we stare into the things that distract us from the life He wants us to freely live.
Jesus wraps us into His embrace as we do this.
And He whispers.
Come walk with me.
Out in the big wide world — as is.
You were meant for more than this.
In the moments your heart is open, how do you best experience your true voice breaking through — touching your soul?
On the days you feel most alone, how can you trace the rainbow of His presence — even if it should last a moment?
Where do you want to go?
What do you want to do?
What do you want to say?
How can you express that deeper part of your life with Jesus?
On the days we seem only able to offer the smallest movements, Jesus is coming alive more than ever in us, folding our heart into His.
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Let’s trace the rainbow together — even if it seems momentary like a memory — sharing it gives voice to what Jesus has whispered to me and you.
By Bonnie Gray, the Faith Barista, serving up shots of faith.
Photo credit: seraiwallpapersm via Photobucket.
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