Today, I’ve come to the table you call banquet, with an expectation of a feast. Expecting plenty delivers, and continues to deliver. You daily deliver to me more than what I left with, from just the day previous.
But coming with nothing, expecting nothing (like I so often do), leaves me envisioning You like you were me – empty, and empty-handed. See, my heart invites subtle decay at this thought of You … but my feet keep pumping.
You are gracious with my empty, though, as if my empty could even compel, not repel. Like the full moon sending splinters of light through my inside bedroom also enveloped in night sky, You enter.
Yesterday, You entered and this entry birthed a mustard seed of expectation in my heart. And every small movement counts in Your kingdom.
So I sit down to adore you today with yesterday’s leftovers available, yet still hungry. Refreshment.
Psalm 18:35 Your gentleness has made me great.**
What? This can’t be.
I expect You to be anything but gentle with me, because I am anything but gentle with me. I am rough on my sin, hoping self-inflicted calluses will prevent me from going there again. First intentions to hate sin grow into life-patterns secretly, subtly bemoaning the sinner.
But You, You are gentle. Even with the worst of these, me.
Your gentleness stamps beauty on what I call ugly. Like a match against a cave, it gives the clamoring-for-light darkness its answer. Gentle exposure from gentle-You.
Gentle is a mother with her not-yet weaned. Gentle is a betrothed towards the bride of his youth. Gentle fingers wrapped around trembling hands that know little how to receive. Gentle is Love’s forerunner.
Gentle is You.
You lead with gentleness, you pave new roads with gentleness. You enter a scene of distress and patch wounds with a bandage called gentle. Your gentleness is not ignorant, casting a blind eye. It is all-knowing, ever-seeing, penetrating. And yet still tender.
You are a strong gentle.
You are not afraid of the springing-up greatness in the recipients of your gentleness because true greatness magnifies the One who made it great. I am afraid of great, happy to shrink back and settle for less-than because less-than is what I think I deserve.
But You serve up gentle. Every time.
I adore You, oh God, who introduced my heart to pure gentleness.
And when I look at You, the Man-gentle, the thin shear of shame barely evident to the naked eye – my naked eye — that keeps me from coming back to You after my morning dip in the wading pool, makes me want to pioneer a path to the ocean with You.
‘Cause it’s in the depths of Gentle’s waves and currents that I am made great. And You made me for great.
**So what do I do with these posts, you ask, other than just read them? First, if you haven’t yet, read: Why I Adore to give you a context for this little space on my blog. (This post also gives context.)
If you are compelled, I invite you to participate. Set up a space and time in your own life to begin adoring. Over laundry or dinner dishes, on your commute to work, or in the wee morning hours — ten minutes is a great start. You can use the verse I list here every day or two as a launch pad for your own adoration.
Then practice praise.
Add to my adoration here, by posting a comment with your own words back to God about God …or hide it in your heart.
I promise your weary soul won’t regret it.
***You can easily subscribe to these devotional meditations as they are delivered, by using this feed: http://www.EveryBitterThingisSweet.com/posts/chai/feed or by entering your email address in the second box on the right-hand side… (scroll up a bit)
Additionally, all of the Morning Chai Posts can be seen, in the order of posting, by clicking here or adding this address to your reader: EveryBitterThingisSweet.com/posts/chai