Here I am, Lord

A blog. I'm creating a blog entry.... Reading these words on the screen seems CRAZY!!

Who do I think I am??? 
What could I possibly have to say that is blog-worthy???? 
Am I qualified for this??? 
And who would possibly want to read what I have to write??? 
These are just a few of the thoughts swarming around my head right now. And yet ... Here I am.

Let me back up a little ...

Several weeks ago I attended an Ignatian Preached Silent retreat, and while there God's Word came alive for me in a way I had never before experienced. I was reading about Jesus talking with the Samaritan woman at the well in the Gospel of John. Certainly I've read and listened to this story at mass many times before. But it was NEVER like this ...

For the first time ever, when I read about Jesus bringing up the woman's rocky past, her imperfections, her sins and her brokenness, I heard HIS VOICE. He was speaking to the woman at the well ... but he was also speaking to MEHis voice was LOVING. PATIENT. GENTLE. FULL OF COMPASSION. It was quite unlike the voice I often use to speak to myself, which can be harsh, condemning and critical. 😕 I read on as he lovingly pointed out that if she continued trying to quench her thirst with water from the well, she would remain thirsty. But if she would only look to Jesus for water, she would thirst no more. I heard Jesus say to me, "Jen, look at me. ME. You're focusing on these arbitrary rules you've created for your family, your home, your career and yourself. You're striving so hard to control everything and complete all of the things on your massive "To Do" list, as if that will ever satisfy you. But it won't. You'll continue to thirst. It will never be "enough." It will never make you feel as if you are whole. But Jen. If you come to me, if you let me, I CAN quench your thirst." 

I can't even describe the emotions that rushed over me as Jesus again and again told me that I don't have to be perfect or have a perfect ______ (you fill in the blank.... body, wardrobe, family, house, etc) in order to be enough. I'm already enough! Because He says so! Y'ALLLLLLL!!!! This was such a breakthrough for me! The waterworks were crazy! I didn't think I'd ever stop crying those freeing and healing tears! And It. Was. Wonderful!
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Since the retreat, I have continued to slowly read the Gospel of John. After Jesus revealed himself to the Samaritan woman, she rushed back to town to tell everyone about the man she had met. In fact, she rushed off so quickly, she FORGOT HER WATER JUG at the well!! Now I don't know what it's like to live in a time and place where you hike out with a bucket to get water from a well, but I liken this to rushing off and forgetting my phone. You know ...  the phone with all of my "To Do" lists 😏. Aaaggghhh!! I felt as if Jesus was asking whether I had been so moved on the retreat that I could forget some of the lists that have always been so important to me, and instead tell others about our meeting.

Of course a voice in my head immediately decided I could only share this meeting with a couple of close friends. I certainly couldn't put my story out there for just anyone!
It would be too uncomfortable. 
I would be embarrassed. 
People would think I'm nuts. 
What difference would my story make anyway?

And early this morning while sipping my coffee and continuing to slowly read John's Gospel, Jesus spoke to me again. I read Chapter 4:39. Many of the Samaritans from that town believed in him because of the woman's testimony.  Now during the Samaritan woman's time, a woman's word held very little weight. And given her past, I suspect she may not have been a highly regarded woman of the community. Did she worry what people would think if she shared her story? Was she concerned it would be uncomfortable? Or embarassing? Or that people would think she was nuts? Did she question whether her words would make a difference?  I don't know. John's gospel doesn't give those details. But I think it's certainly possible. And if she could overcome those voices in her head and share her story, an act that ultimately led others to Christ, then I know I can share my story, too. 

This morning as I entered mass I asked God for a sign, some way to know if He really thinks I should start a blog. I often have trouble distinguishing MY voice, telling myself what I WANT to hear from God, from HIS voice, telling me what He actually wants. (Did I mention my control issues?)  Anyway, for many many months the song "Here I Am, Lord" has been in my head. I randomly find myself humming it even when I've not recently heard it. You know where I'm going with this... While at mass, we sang this song. And for the first time I actually pulled out the book and sang along with ALL the words. Which means I sang the following:

I will break their hearts of stone
Give them hearts for love alone
I will speak my words to them
Whom shall I send?

Here I am, Lord, Is it I, Lord?
I have heard you calling in the night
I will go, Lord, if you lead me
I will hold your people in my heart
(Lyrics by Dan Schutte)

So. Here I sit. Writing my first blog entry. I'm not yet sure how to format it or make it look pretty. And I have no idea if you're still reading it (it is kind of long!), or when I'll write the next one. But I do know that this blog was God's idea, not mine. And I pray that God breathes life into it. 

Here I am, Lord. 

Comments

  1. Incredible story, Jen! Thank you for sharing this.

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    1. You're welcome, Kim! I'm so glad you read it. I can only imagine that others reading it is why He wanted me to write it!

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  2. :) if you speak your true heart there is nothing to be embarrassed about. Keep it coming!

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  3. Replies
    1. I remember reading this a LONG time ago....2 years actually! I’m so happy you are continuing to allow God to use you! You are an inspiration and a blessing to me! ❤️

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