Dark & Empty

Genesis 1:2  Now the earth was without shape and empty, and darkness was over the surface of the watery deep, but the Spirit of God was moving over the surface of the water.

This earth (me) seems to be without shape and very empty at this time. Darkness covers the deep waters of my soul. But, I am confident that the Spirit of God is moving in my life even though circumstances appear contradictory.

How do I know that? I continue to cause pain for those I love.

I’m trying to learn to love as Jesus loved, but it eludes me.

Maybe I am becoming a threat to the kingdom of darkness. Maybe that is why I am experiencing these things. Otherwise, I would not be concerned about it one way or the other. But, such is not the case.

I am concerned. I hurt deeply when I seem to be the cause of someone’s pain. In those times I am ready (once again–as many times in the past) to throw in the towel. To call it quits. I think will never be an example of a good follower of the Lord. Therefore, I try to assume that I am becoming a threat to the devil’s domain. However, that helps not at all.

Despair.

What a dark enemy of the soul.

Compassion

I awoke this morning in awe at how the Lord is changing things in my heart.

A few decades ago, I had to ask the Lord for compassion. If He wanted me to be a pastor, then there was no way I could function with the hardness of heart I exhibited toward people. I operated from the standpoint of, “You made your bed. Now you have to lie in it.”

It broke my heart that my heart was in such condition.

Over the years that followed, I have seen the Lord’s work of grace in my heart, as compassion has been developed. It is not something that I have done, but a work of grace within me.

This past decade, He has been teaching me the difference between human and divine compassion–a lesson not easily learned. (I’ll not discuss the distinctions of each here. Maybe later.)

I’ve grown to have compassion on those whom I love, and those with whom I am related in business or socially.

But, this morning, I awoke with a burden on my heart for those I only know through the blogosphere. I’ve never met them. I do not know the sound of their voice.

I only know that they are hurting–and I was hurt by their pain.

For that I am grateful.

One is caught in the aftermath of an ice storm and has no power.

One has had his income severely curtailed and has to relocate.

One has a new job that changes the way things were done at home, and mutual support is now challenging.

One is dealing with marital betrayal.

One is dealing with a son who is having tremendous difficulty.

I awoke praying intensely for each of these–my friends whom I have never met–in a way that I’ve never prayed even for those oft-repeated ‘prayer requests’ for sickness and pain within the local assembly.

It is a new day for me. And I am thankful for the new work of the Holy Spirit in my life.