Stop Performing for Love
REBEKAH LYONS — Thoughts on the beginning of 2015.
I love this time of year. Most years, that is. The energy, the zeal, the screen refresh.
This past advent, however, I found myself hanging onto 2014. It seemed we had unfinished business. Not regret, mind you, but more of a searching to understand. I needed to resolve what was stirring. Apart from speaking on the road, I’d crawled into my virtual shell, hiding out online, steering from blogging, because I couldn’t wrap 600-800 words into a tidy bow. The days weren’t so tidy in 2014. When all your seeking only brings more questions, you tend to just shut up.
The Lord met me in the silence with promises, most mornings like manna in the wilderness. I’d span from lament to exuberance in a single hour. While the noise of social media seemed deafening, there were online truth tellers that kept me going. I found real life conversations with new and old friends asking the same, “What was He up to in this world?” and in the meantime, “How could He possibly love us so deeply?”
When we moved from New York City to Nashville in August, friends kept saying I was entering a season of rest. This is not something a runner wants to hear. It feels like you’ve been benched, or worse, you’ve tripped in your lane while the others go whizzing by. All my life, my worth has been determined by what I do. So I begrudgingly entered the small town of Franklin, drove around aimlessly those early days in my minivan to carpool, to Publix, to gymnastics and wondered what in the world just happened to my “fabulous” life. It is excruciating to admit. I confess.
Right about that time, Trina sent me the book Abiding in Christ, by Andrew Murray. Written in 1895, I like to read books by dead people. They cut through the noise of today. It was a timely love letter on the relationship between the vine and the branch, with each page dog-eared, underlined, circled, highlighted and exclamation pointed! As the fall unfolded, I heard the words loud and clear…
Stop performing for love.
In the season where we begin again with to-do’s and goals and ambitions, the Father asks us to rest assured. He wants us to stop trying so hard to matter. He’s got this. We already matter, from the moment he carefully crafted us in our mother’s womb. His love is so powerful, so overwhelming, so great. Yes, be BRAVE. Absolutely. But in order to do so, meditate on His words day and night. He is faithful. He goes before us. He draws us close. As 2015 dawns, these are the words I pray settle into my soul…
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You are my beloved. I ordered this from the beginning. I love you with an everlasting love. Nothing you can do can shake that. You can strive, you can perform, you can impress, but you don’t need to. Please stop. Just fix your eyes on me. I have everything you need. Fall into my arms. I will fill your heart and satisfy your soul.
I am good for it.
I crafted you with such intention, because I have plans and purposes that only you can accomplish. I long for communion with you because I want to reveal these to you. I chose you, from the beginning. You are the one. The one I pursue with a relentless love.
I don’t need your temples, your burnt or sin offerings, Jesus took care of all that. But I do need you. All of you. Every hidden, broken part. Tell me what breaks your heart, because I already know anyway. But your confession reveals you are letting me in. I long to graft you into the vine of Jesus, a union that can never be severed. Then you’ll remain in Him, and He in You. Further, I’ll keep you there. You don’t even need to stress about abiding. I’ll take care of it. This is my will.
Reprinted from Rebekah’s blog at rebekahlyons.com