One of the most significant gifts that my husband has ever given me is a black and white, wool, Pendleton blanket. The blanket itself is absolutely stunning, but what makes it deeply meaningful to me is the reason behind the purchase.
It was a season in my life where every single thing seemed quite desperately uncertain.
Being in full time ministry means that we move when God asks, and where He calls us to.
I never wanted to move as a grown up.
I was a missionary kid that moved almost every two years. I didn’t mind it so much then, but there is nothing I wanted more as an adult then security – to be planted, to grow some roots, to have stability.
That is not how life goes when you are in ministry.
I’ve made peace with the rhythm of our life and unpredictability of the future. Now, I wouldn’t have it any other way. If we had not obeyed God’s leading we would have missed out on glorious souls and beautiful places that have shaped, grown, inspired and changed David and I forever. Each and every ministry that we have been a part of has been orchestrated in a sovereign and purposeful way, for our eternal best. I wouldn’t change a thing, or miss a single season – even the darkest ones. Moving has become a part of our lives, because, we trust that God’s plan for our lives is far superior to ours.
There was one time in particular that obeying God felt like it was costing us everything. I felt like I was dying to self, in every single way, to say yes to what He was asking us to do. As I said above, everything felt desperately uncertain. That is the best way I can describe it.
David bought me that blanket so that every night, as we pulled that beautiful blanket up over us, we would be reminded – over and over again – that His presence covers us. A tangible reminder of an essential truth.
That perfectly woven aztec design was the last thing I would see at night and the first thing I would see in the morning. God’s presence covering me, was something I would cling to – over and over again – until my heart and head believed it, and trusted Him with our future.
It was during this time that I experienced deep and significant truths about God.
“O Lord, you have searched me and known me!
You know when I sit down and when I rise up; you discern my thoughts from afar.
You search out my path and my lying down and are acquainted with all my ways.
Even before a word is on my tongue, behold, O Lord, you know it altogether.
You hem me in, behind and before, and lay your hand upon me.
Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; it is high; I cannot attain it.
Where shall I go from your Spirit? Or where shall I flee from your presence?
If I ascend to heaven, you are there!
If I make my bed in Sheol, you are there!
If I take the wings of the morning and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea, even there your hand shall lead me, and your right hand shall hold me.
If I say, “Surely the darkness shall cover me, and the light about me be night,” even the darkness is not dark to you; the night is bright as the day, for darkness is as light with you.
For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb.
I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well.
My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made in secret, intricately woven in the depths of the earth.
Your eyes saw my unformed substance; in your book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me, when as yet there was none of them.
How precious to me are your thoughts, O God! How vast is the sum of them! If I would count them, they are more than the sand. I awake, and I am still with you.”
Psalms 139:1-18 ESV
God is present. He is here – in this very moment.
There is no where you can go that is out of his reach, or too far from His presence. There is no such place.
There is no circumstance or season that His perfect presence and peace can’t meet you in- and cover you COMPLETELY.
Wherever you find yourself today, you are enveloped in the presence of the Almighty King. Hemmed in – behind and before. Fully known and fully loved.
I have learned, in every season, to ask these questions:
What is true about God?
What does God’s Word say about Him?
What does His Word say about me?
What does He require of me? (What can I learn? How can I grow? How can I make the most of this trial?)
How can I walk through this season and come out of it looking more like Him?
Do I really, truly trust Him? (Even when life doesn’t make any sense?)
After considering these things, I tend to walk forward in new confidence – covered in the presence of an Almighty King, equipped with truth that I can cling to, and stand firmly on through every season.
Tonight when you pull up your covers remember this…
His presence is your covering.
You have been tenderly, meticulously, perfectly hemmed in behind and before.
You are fully known and unconditionally loved.
Join me in confidence & peace under His covering,