"I am the way, the truth, and the life."
I have come to see that
what I believe is how I will live.
And I have read that if the Son sets you free,
you shall be free indeed.
And that you shall know the truth and the truth shall set you free.
So if I live what I believe,
I might as well believe Truth.
But there have been times I did not.
And some times I don't.
I have believed lots of things that aren't true.
For many years I believed that my
security, identity, validity, and value
were rooted in a successful academics, school activities,
a long list of accomplishments,
career and business success,
and underneath all of that
admiration, praise and applause were my cup-fillers.
It's not that doing well in school and business is wrong.
But I grasped frantically and in desperation
and sacrificed time, money, and values for those things.
They seemed like things I could control, they were right and good and admirable.
Yet those "things" are not The Way.
Those are not where I find ultimate security, identity, and value.
They are not what fill the hole in my heart I was seeking to fill.
The false beliefs are endless really.
We can discover them throughout our life.
And they really become how we live.
Even if they are not true.
But as my truth rather than my shameful hiding entered my life,
. . . even though it was painful at the time . . .
as that happened
and the forgiveness of Jesus poured out on me
and His grace washed over me,
opened up before my eyes.
The truth of
who He is
and the truth of
who I am
because of Him
and the truth of
who He has made and is making me to be.
He has continued
to show me Himself.
One in the same.
Three years ago,
I came to Cedar Canyon Bible Camp
just to go to the evening service.
Very much knowing
I needed to make a change.
I participated along with the teens
writing down what I needed to let go of on a piece of paper
we burned it.
I was not free yet in that moment.
But in the weeks to come,
I spoke with authenticity and truth.
And made hard changes.
Through restless nights,
wrestling with God and myself
about my beliefs and my choices and my options
to follow the Way.
Three years ago,
I let go of my agenda for how life had to be,
I let go of who I thought I had to please,
and let God transform my mind and heart.
Three years later,
I am back at Cedar Canyon Bible Camp,
sharing lies I have believed
God's truth that can set us free.
we nailed the truth
to pieces of wood.
With the lie
on the back side.
As I picked up the left over sheets
of lies and truth.
My heart broke when I saw the things the girls had believed
even though I have believed them,
and even though I knew
they probably have believed them.
Still, it breaks my heart when I see the holes
in the page,
where it said,
"I have believed that I am ruined
and my life is ruined by things I have done
or things that have happened to me."
It breaks my heart
when the hole was in the page
where the words read,
"I have believed that I don't belong"
or the one that was typed,
"I have believed that I am abandoned"
But my heart rejoices to know that
they also acknowledged that
"The truth is the Jesus can give me a crown of beauty
in place of the parts of my life that have been destroyed"
(See Isaiah 61)
and my heart rejoices
that she acknowledged that
"The truth is I belong to the LORD.
He says, 'You are Mine."
(See Isaiah 43:1)
"The truth is that I have been chosen by Him to be holy and blameless.
The truth is that it is His pleasure to adopt me and He planned to do it.
The truth is He accepts me."
They made a
beautiful remembrance of Truth.
for these girls
is that their hearts are prepared soil
ready to receive
the seeds of truth.
That the Word planted
won't be choked out by weeds,
dried up among the rocks,
or snatched away.
My prayer is
that they will be willing
to give their hearts to
the One who will make
their hearts into
the soil of a good and noble heart
so that it can grow
yield a harvest in their lives
Your word says in Isaiah 55 that
as the rain comes down, and the snow from heaven,
and do not return there, but water the earth, and make it bring forth and bud,
That it may give seed to the sower
and bread the the eater,
So shall My word be that goes forth from My mouth;
It shall not return to Me void,
But it shall accomplish what I please,
And it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it.
For you shall go out with joy,
and be led out with peace;
The mountains and the hills shall break forth into singing before you,
And all the trees of the field shall clap their hands.
I pray that this Truth,
that your Word
shall not return to You void,
but shall accomplish what You please
in the lives
And that there
In Jesus name,
Cedar Canyon Bible Camp was
my "studio" for the week.
Visit Jennifer at Studio JRU and these
inspirational artists, photographers, writers,
for a sneak peek into their studio this week:
Jodene Shaw Mixed Media Art & Photography copyright 2012.