Rock of Offense (Day 1 from Cleansing Thoughts)

       WE ALL HAVE THINGS IN our past we try to run from or bury deep within ourselves. Sometimes, the smallest will trigger a reaction that results in a domino effect of uncontrollable emotions. I was such a person.

    As a survivor of abuse, there was always an element of fear that controlled my life. As a small child, it kept me bound from discovering who I was, and as a young adult, it kept me from giving or being able to receive love. Early in my Christian walk, I knew something was wrong. There was always that part of me that was afraid to reach out, even to God. Unable to sleep, I would wander around the house or sit in the porch swing staring into the night. Many times after my family had fallen to sleep, I would get up and study or read until the early morning hours. There was one night that stands out in my mind; I had been reading Psalms when God spoke so clearly to my heart.

    There was a full moon out that night, and after reading, I went to sit in the swing. For some reason, I had picked up a small piece of petrified wood I had brought back from a recent trip to the mountain. As I sat there, the words from one of the Psalms I had just read came to mind, "For in the time of trouble He shall hide me; He shall set me upon a rock"  (Psalm 27:5, NKJV). In the quietness of the night, His inner voice filled my entire being. My heart began to race, and for a moment, I was frightened, but as I looked around, there was nothing there, Something within me wanted to hide, but from what? I began to clench the rock in my hand as if my life depended on it. I don't know how long I sat there, too afraid to move as the seconds seemed like hours. There was a shooting pain going up my arm from clenching the rock, but I kept holding it tighter. Then from out of nowhere, it was as if I heard a voice saying, "Let it go." With the same intensity as the fear was a sense of peace as calm as the night. 

    Just as suddenly as the fear had come, it was now gone, but the pain in my arm and hand from clenching the rock was still there. I tried to open it, but my fingers would not move. I cried out for the Lord to help me and began to work with my hand, trying to relieve the pain. After a while, I was able to open my fingers just enough to remove the rock. I sat there rubbing my hand and asking the Lord to forgive me for allowing my idle fears to cause me to do such a foolish thing. In the fullness of the moon, I could see the redness of my hand, and there in my palm was a perfect impression of the rock.


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