Opening Our Hearts to the (Son)shine

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Have you ever taken time to close your eyes, hold your face to the sunshine and feel the strength of its rays penetrate through your skin? Deep enough to wrap your heart in a warm, cozy blanket?

I love to see mourning doves and robins sunbathe outside my office window. They stretch out their wings and tail and expose them to the warm rays of the sun.

Why do they do this? For the warmth? I was curious, so I researched and found there are various reasons birds sunbathe. I was especially awed by the most important of them. They stretch out their wings and fluff up the feathers on their backs and heads so that as much of their plumage and skin as possible will be exposed to the sun’s rays. There are tiny parasites that can infect their feathers and cause problems with their flight and insulation, thus affecting their survival. The heat of the sun drives these insects out of their hiding places so birds have easier access to them when they preen. Amazing how God created these survival skills, isn’t it?DSC_0094

Parasites get their food from or at the expense of another. What parasites do we have in our lives? What parasites eat away the life and energy of our spirits and infect us with negative feelings and lies?

There are so many of them, so I’ll only mention two of them that especially settle in deep and infect my spirit, that inhibit me from flying free in Jesus.

Insecurity eats away our confidence and pulls us back into a shell of “I can’t. I’ll never be good enough.”

Shame poisons our perspective and degrades us with “Something is wrong with you. You are nothing but ugly scum. You’ll always be deficient, defective, and worthless as a human being.”

It seems a lifelong process to get rid of them and keep them out. But we can learn so much from sunbathing birds. Like the heat of the sun dislodges the parasites, so the sunshine of God’s love can drive out those latched-on parasites that unsettle our spirits.

If birds don’t expose the parasites to the sun’s heat, the pests will devour their ability to fly and to survive. Likewise, if we don’t expose all our parasites to the (Son)shine of God’s love, we will remain miserable. Merely existing. Not thriving. Not feeling the fullness of His love. Not flying free in Jesus.

After the sun’s heat dislodges the parasites in birds, they further preen them out or they will slip right back into their hiding places again. So we need to keep on preening ourselves with God’s promises of who we really are in Him, always on alert for the devil who loves to send insecurity and shame right back into the deep recesses of our hearts.

Yes, our hearts can get so weary. Our spirits are willing, but our flesh is weak. We long for deeper healing, for the extermination of those parasites, but we can feel so helpless and hopeless.

But Jesus cares. He knows our weakness and longs for us to grab onto His strength. The sunshine of His love is always shining with warmth and healing. He yearns for us to open our hearts, to expose all those parasites to the (Son)shine.

Godwhispers

My precious child

In Me you are

Always enough

Always capable

Of great value

So beautiful

Trust me My beloved

Open your heart

To My love

My grace

My healing

My love has power 

To heal you

To give you

Freedom to fly

shame no longer has you

“His brightness is like the sunlight;
He has [bright] rays flashing from His hand,
And there [in the sunlike splendor]
is the hiding place of His power.”
Habakkuk 3:4 AMP

“But for you who revere My name,
the Sun of righteousness will rise
with healing in its rays.
And you will go out and
frolic like well-fed calves.”
Malachi 4:2

And [I pray] that the eyes of your heart
[the very center and core of your being]
may be enlightened [flooded with light by the Holy Spirit],
so that you will know and cherish the hope
[the divine guarantee, the confident expectation]
to which He has called you, the riches of
His glorious inheritance in the saints (God’s people)”
Ephesians 1:18 AMP

A Child's Trust“Who I Am in Christ”


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Linking up with: 

Holley – Coffee For Your Heart 

Jennifer – Tell His Story 

Kelly – Cheerleaders of Faith

Barbie – Weekend Whispers

OneWordCoffee Linkup

God Whispers: Stay Real, Stay With Me, Let Me Stay

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Puffing out his vest of reddish-orange with his open beak pointing to the skies, a robin posed in praise to his Creator and heralded hope for new life after a long, bitterly cold winter.

robinWhen I saw and heard this creature’s delight, singing his heart out on a rooftop this past week, bubbles of hope sprang to life in my weary heart. But then I began to ask myself: But what if I didn’t watch for it? What if I didn’t keep my eyes and ears open? What if there was so much noise within and around me? What if I totally missed out on this ray of hope offered to me?

My heart ponders these questions also in regard to the whispers of hope God so freely offers me. Do I watch for His signs? Do my eyes search wide open? Have I attuned my ears to listen to His channel? Am I so busy talking about my wants to Him that I don’t hear what HE has to say?

So in light of this, I am trying to hear God’s gentle whispers of  hope and direction in my life. Ever since I read Faith Barista’s writing prompt for this week, God has been nudging my heart to STAY.

GOD WHISPERS

STAY real, My child.

My child, stay in this place of being “real.” Don’t try to be anything different from who you really are. I have created you in a specific, unique way. I have given you gifts and passions. Dig deep into your heart and resurrect them. No matter what anyone says, no one besides Me knows your heart more than you do, so listen to it. Don’t listen to that lie that you will never be enough to make a positive difference in this world. Believe Me. Your voice matters, your story is important, and your life has a purpose. Because I created you in My image.

Don’t seek approval of people. It doesn’t matter how many blog followers, comments, likes, or hits you have. You don’t need validation from people. You need validation from ME. What matters is – Are you writing for ME? Are you concerned more about your own elevation or about promoting Me, to further My life-giving cause? Drink from My fountain of grace and love, not from the never-fulfilling cisterns of people approval. 

Just be “real,” My child, just be “real.” Be genuine. Don’t put on an artificial front, trying to live your life according to the expectations of others. Trying to be strong and not allow your true feelings to surface. Don’t shut off your God-given authenticity. Your voice matters, even though experiences have indicated it doesn’t. Don’t be ashamed of bringing deep instincts within you to light, but treat them as jewels of My making, meant to be polished and to shine. Not everyone is going to like what you write or speak, but that’s ok. That doesn’t make you less of a person. You still are My specially created child. My beloved child. Trust Me, rest against Me, and rely on Me. You are safe in My grip.

Concentrate on My love for you, and love Me above all else. Don’t sacrifice MY TRUTH or My creation of YOU to gain conditional love from people. Speak the truth always, truly from your heart, from My Word. Not peppered with judgment but seasoned with grace. Speak the truth in LOVE. Because I AM LOVE. My LOVE for you is where it all began. Let My love ooze from you to all who cross your path. Look at each person as through My eyes, and you will have compassion. This doesn’t mean you need to tolerate abuse from anyone. Love justice as I do and defend the rights of down-trodden souls. Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves. Proclaim hope, healing, and freedom in Me to those who are shackled and broken. 

STAY with ME, My Child.

My child, stay in this place of remembering what I have already done for you. I gave My life for yours. I suffered an excruciating death so that you may be set free from sin and shame, death and destruction, the devil and his lies. I have already won that victory, so don’t keep condemning yourself. Don’t keep living in shame. Lift up your downcast eyes and see Me. Unblock your ears from listening to all those negative voices and hear My gentle whispers of love, peace, and promise. Open the door of your fearful heart and welcome me in as a safe Counselor, Friend, and Savior with intentions only to rescue you, heal you, and guide you.

Trust Me enough to believe My full forgiveness has already been given, never ends, and is available to you continuously.

Trust Me enough to believe My grace is so complete that you don’t need to beat yourself up or think you need to do more to earn My favor.

Trust Me enough to believe My power is so limitless that there is nothing I can’t give you the strength to do.

My child, My love for you never exhausts itself. You cannot do anything to deplete it. It remains full and free. Undivided, unconditional, unfailing.

Let Me STAY, My Child.

Stop running, My child.
Stop pushing Me away.
Stop locking Me out of the deep places in your heart.

Let Me in.
Let Me love you.
Let Me stay.

I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life.
I am your Rock of Refuge,
Your Bright and Morning Star,

I Groan and Plead on your behalf
When you are so broken you cannot think of what to pray.

Don’t you understand, My child, how I earnestly long for your presence?

Don’t you know how I rejoice in you as the most precious, priceless pearl?

Don’t you realize, My child, how much I truly care and how safe I really am?

Trust Me, My child,
Your heart is safe with me.
Invite Me in,
Let Me STAY.

god-whispers

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Are you being true to who you really are?

Do you know how much Jesus loves you and longs for you?

Will you invite Jesus in, let Him love you, and let Him stay?

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