When we return to the study the sun is shining brightly through the windows. It is such a delightful place! The warm sunlight glows on the deeply polished wood. There is a peace and order in this room that comforts and welcomes me. We walk to the chairs by the fireplace. He sits and draws me to His lap. With an incredible contentment I curl against His shoulder. For a moment all is right in the world.
“Papa, may I ask you something?” He nods. “Why did you ask me if I was sure I wanted your correction?”
“I wanted you to know yourself, to hear your own voice say that you wanted what would bring pain to you for a moment. I wanted you to know that I was not requiring this of you, but that this was a path you wanted to go. I will not force you in this place, you must walk here willingly with Me.” He responds gently.
It is still difficult for me to comprehend that He is not demanding these changes of me. Are you, were You angry with me?” I cannot keep myself from asking. It seems so difficult to believe that this is possible.
His voice smiles and He briefly holds me tighter and answers.” No, it saddened Me when you left this place. It was My delight to hear you calling to Me to meet you there in the garden, by the tree. No child, I am not angry, I am pleased.”
His words sit warmly upon my heart. He continues to speak to me of my expectations and dreams. He tells me again of His pleasure in me, in the softness of my heart to Him. I want so much to feel this in the depths of my being, even as I felt His correction, but is seems so much harder.
“It takes longer to build that it does to tear down. We are rebuilding structures in your heart now. Taking down what sin built is easier, rebuilding will take more time.” He explains.
I see a package at His feet. I seems covered in insects! My stomach churns and my skin crawls. “What is that?”
“The flies are trying to return.” He seems so undisturbed by this, I do not understand. Earlier, He was so concerned about these creatures, so adamant that I be protected from them.
“What should I do?” I want to get rid of this thing, I don’t want to be anywhere near it.
“Wrap it up and throw it into the fire.”
The package is sitting beside a bag. I place the bag over the package and tie it up into the bag, careful not to allow the insects to escape. My stomach heaves uncomfortably being this close to the bugs. I waste no time in throwing it into the fire. The flames quickly consume the parcel. I wonder what would have happened had it remained in the room with us, but He does not offer an answer. I quickly return to His arms.
“Let me touch your and begin to heal and rebuild your heart.” His gentle invitation soothes my anxiety. I open myself to Him, but say nothing. He places His had on my belly. It is heavy and warm. “I love you daughter and I want to build new structures within you. Stay with Me here until that is achieved. You will need them for the next place we are going.”
“I will, Papa! I will.” I whisper as committed to stay here with Him as I was to stay at the tree until my heart was changed. I rest my head on His shoulder and try to drink in His presence. Oddly, I find that even here there is a part of me cringing, waiting for rebuke, even afraid.
“We’ve touched this before, but the wound is deep, the betrayal you felt from those you allowed here before wounded you beyond what you know. Rebuilding will take time.” He explains before I even ask.
The pain He speaks of rises to the surface, I know it well, its sharpness, its expectancies. “What do I do?” my desperation wells up, pouring forth before I can check it.
“Patience,” He reminds me. “This will take time. Know what this pain is first. Then choose a different course. Choose to respond differently. Recognize what this is and go on. Do not give it more than acknowledgement. Focus on the new path, the new building. Here, take My hand.” He extends his right hand. I take it in mine, awed at the strength and gentleness. I cannot help but press His hand to my cheek. I feel a tear slipping down my cheek. He catches it, saying, “I want your heart. Look at my hand.”
He extends his left hand toward me, turning His palm to me. I see the scar from the nail and something else. Below the scar I see my name carved in His palm. I am struck by the sight, so hard that I cannot comprehend it. The feelings are so strong they overwhelm to the point that I can no longer feel the fear and pain I felt just moments before. How can I not trust my heart to the one who has carved my name into His hand along with the wounds He bore for me?