Friday, 10 July 2015

Letting go and moving on

Much of my life lately has felt like a waiting season where I gaze wistful as others go about their days.

A place where quiet speaks loud of all God desires me to hear.

For several months now I've been asked to sit still, to rest, to learn the value of silence and contemplation as I pace and recover from a relapse in the M.E symptoms.

I ache to birth the books within, to engage more fully socially, to be a more active participant in life's journey.

Summer's vitality and colour spring up in abundance all around me, offering invitation to embrace, join in. And it's been hard feeling set aside, being less active than before.

But I've needed to learn to heed what is required of me and what needs to be let go of.

And as I listened more closely, I sensed God asking me to widen my vision for this blog and writing in general. He has more planned for me than I ever imagined.

His timing may not be one of my choosing but will bear the most fruit for the future.

'Words of Joy' has a new home at on WordPress. It seems I've outlived this space. 

It's time to move on, stretch out faith-fingers toward an unknown future.

It feels scary, uncertain and strange right now. Change doesn't come easy for me. I ache for safe and familiar. Maybe you too?

But truth be told, without the stir of change I'm in danger of stagnation and sinking into an unthinking, albeit comfortable, routine.

We all need change. It's inevitable and essential for opportunity and growth, learning, maturation and adaptation, for all the new things God wants to reveal to us.

Change will look different for each one of us but it will stretch and teach us just the same. So I am readying myself for the inevitable as God calls me elsewhere.

Meanwhile, letting go and moving on also feels quite liberating and strangely exhilarating too. 

An act and leap of faith into the unknown...

A new home. Fresh start. Trusting that words will come as before. Trusting God knows what lies ahead.

It won't be an all-singing-all-dancing site - I'm not tech-savvy enough for that. But it will have a warm welcome waiting for you just the same.

Because home is where the heart is, right? And my heart is always in my writing.

The new place is still very much a work in progress, just like me.

I hope you'll extend grace as we make it a comfortable space to be together.

The paintwork is still a bit wet behind the ears, much like its owner.

There may be several alterations to come, some furniture to shift around.

But I sense I should move anyway and trust God to show me how to shape it as I write.

Because without Holy Spirit inspiration, grace and equipping I wouldn't be able to write at all.

Come and join me at the new look 'Words of Joy'I'd love to have your company.

Please re-subscribe there to get new posts delivered to your in-box. 

Here's my new address:

Coffee's on..see you soon! Blessings and love, 
Joy :)

Wednesday, 1 July 2015

Knowing and being known

Silence is a space where our thoughts fly free as birds and we watch them circling wild.

They feel impossible to ignore or pin down. Grow larger as we give them room to move around.

Once we snare one, then ten others rush as an angry horde in our heads.

And we sigh because we thought that being still and being quiet physically would also somehow impose a little rest in our mind.

Isn't that why we draw aside and seek tranquillity? It will come in time. Patience is its own reward.

What I am learning as a beginner in the art of contemplative prayer is to be able to welcome the thoughts, observe their presence and gently release them again as I remain at rest.

But some thoughts linger like dark intruders trying to cloak us in their presence, stifle life and vitality.

They leave overwhelming and painful feelings behind.

And when they arrive we seek to eliminate them as quickly as possible because who wants to be reminded of the state of their heart where worry sits deep, anxiety is anchored and fears float free?

There seems to be enough darkness in the world for us to be willing to admit to it within our souls. Such knowing seems to be a step too far most days.

Little do we know that such self-awareness is a doorway to finding freedom.

Discouragement sits at the door of our heart, with despair and depression hot on its heels, and we can feel swamped by it unless we fully know and accept who we are and Whose we are.

Such pondering was in my heart this morning when I prayed and asked God to speak to me.

And He did, in the words below. My hope and prayer is that this prayer whisper will encourage you too as you seek to know and be known by God.

Prayer Whisper:Know yourself and know who you are in Me

"Know yourself. But do not grieve or become discouraged by who you are and how you act or react. Such inner understanding of your drives, desires and passions is essential in harnessing their energy for good purposes rather than evil.

Take time to sit with silence. Heed what rises to the surface of your conscious mind. Do not fear those things which appear. Acknowledge these depths of your being; welcome them as guests and guides who have come to teach you a better way to live.

Discernment begins with knowing who you are as a fallen human being made alive and righteous in Christ. 

Try not to dwell on the negative. See those aspects of your character and behaviour as wounds. 

Each wound bears the piercing of blood-red nails, an imprint of cross-inflicted agony I willingly endured to set you free.

Aim to live lightly as you address your woundedness and its revelation of divine Love's response

Aim to be cheered and of good courage as you reflect on the pearl of great price which was paid for your redemption.

Sin still sits within like a recalcitrant lodger but it doesn't take full residence in your heart.

The more you look to Me and wonder at My love, marvel at My mercy, are filled with gratitude for My grace, the more you will see how sin no longer enslaves or has full dominion over you.

I live and move and have My being in you, and you are seated in heavenly places with Me. 

These dark earthly passions are slowly being transformed into power for good and furtherance of My Kingdom.

Yield and surrender to Me and I will gradually change your lowly desires into heavenly ones.

Never forget you are My beloved and the joy of My heart Just As You Are. Nothing and no-one can take that away from you. 

Let your soul rejoice in its resurrection to new life. Little by little, day by day, I am pouring grace into the cracks and crevices and revealing My glory through your weakness. 

Take heart, My child, you are made strong, whole and beautiful in Me"

Friend, you and I are on a lifelong journey toward becoming whole and healed. There are times when it feels like no progress is being made, but every day we are moving forward and learning to live and love as God wants us to.

It starts with learning to accept and love ourselves (in a balanced, God-inspired way) and continues as we reach out to others with empathy and compassion.

Our hurt and pain can become the pathway to another soul feeling less alone with their own situation as we share who we are on the way to all we are becoming.

May you have renewed hope as you follow hard after God's heart and rest in all He is doing within your soul. 

Blessings, love and prayers,