Teresa is home & I am so glad that she is.
The time she was away was very busy at times, but the times it was not busy God was really striping me away. He took so much of me away & there were days I was so angry because the things God striped off me I liked or had been part of me since I can remember. I am an introverted person & really like my times alone, in a place of silence. However, this was beyond the the quiet place of myself. Yes, this was deeper than I had/have ever been. God took me to the place of utter silence within myself. He did not speak, though His presence was so strong I could almost see Him next to me. Yet, He did not speak. I waited in that utter silence waiting for Him to say something. So often I had been busy running, serving, giving, teaching, learning; "doing." That I had forgotten the joy of silence in His presence.
"I ask only one thing from the Lord.
This is what I want:
Let me live in the Lord’s house
all my life.
Let me see the Lord’s beauty
and look with my own eyes at his Temple." Psalm 27:4
For days God's presence was so strong as if I could see Him. I would start talking to Him, but only after a few minutes my words left. I would come to the place where I could not speak. Silence. After days of this I became Angry with God & a fews days in tears stood up from my living room sofa & yelled out loud enraged. GOD, STOP THIS NOW. I HAVE BEEN DOING SO MUCH & HAVE CRAVED TO BE WITH YOU, TO TALK & BE WITH YOU. BUT ALL YOU DO IS NOTHING. JUST SILENCE. WHY WON'T YOU TALK TO ME? WHAT HAVE I DONE? I DESERVE THIS. LOOK, NOW IS THE TIME. SPEAK!!! Silence. Days of Silence.
Once I had moved past demanding from God my my's (expectations, wishes, demands, struggles, hurts, pains, dreams, desires) myself. I found myself in a place of no words.
God says, “Be still and know that I am God.
I will be praised in all the nations;
I will be praised throughout the earth.” Psalm 46:10
When I gave up on myself & truly (though unwillingly) embraced the reality that God was not going to speak, came to a place of peace. I was in His presence. That's what He was teaching me. How to sit in His presence. Silently! His presence was in the complete silence
"…after…a sound of sheer silence. When Elijah heard it, he wrapped his face in his mantle and went out and stood at the entrance of the cave. Then there came a voice to him that said, “What are you doing here, Elijah?” 1 Kings 19:12b-13
Silence is so painful, yet even through I am an introvert & live in a loud, loud world God still lives in the silence which I had forgotten.
Days of silence passed & He spoke only a word. That word would open things in my life that He wanted to change because He & He alone only could change. Some of the words were things I had given up (accepted as just part of me now) & some I was still striving to change. But, He would only speak one word. He never spoke again until I deeply came to the place where I released all of it & allowed Him to remove & restore it completely. As this was happening I was in perfect peace & was in silence. Only after God was ready did He say another word & the process would continue. Sometimes it would take days. Other times it would take hours all at once or two periods of free time during the day, evening or night. Sometimes I would be awake in the middle of the night for hours because God decided that this was the time to continue with me.
"But do what you want, not what I want." Luke 22:42b
God changed so much of me. He took away so much (self) that was not Him. He also spent hours pouring into me (encouragement, love, joy) things that I had never known I was wounded from & needed pure God only restoration from.
I have been healed & am changed. I know that I need to not forget what God has taught me. "His presence is best."
"…Mary, who was sitting at Jesus’ feet and listening to him teach…
Only one thing is important. Mary has chosen the better thing, and
it will never be taken away from her.” Luke 10:39b & 42
God asked Teresa to go serve her family so that she could learn what He wanted her to learn. God asked me to stay so that He could learn what I needed to learn. I have learned that times apart are what "we need" so that God can bring us past ourselves & only after we have come past ourselves can He change us for His glory.
We live For Him (what we were created for)
Not to live for self (what we think we were created for)
“‘Holy, holy, holy
is the Lord God Almighty,
who was, and is, and is to come.” Revelation 4:8b