January 10, 2007

so I have the blues?

Well, I'm not really sure I want to write this blog entry... cause its not very happy... I've got one to write up of a visit to a 2nd century ampitheater in Durres and old old city of Albania. It'll been cool to write that up some day soon! And there is more to say about Albania and its people and its needs and its landscape. But for now back to myself and the blues...

Its just about 7pm and that's been my bedtime for the last 3 nights. I've been ill for five days. Not been able to eat, been weak, been aching. Sometimes the electricitys been off. For most of the time I've questioned everything from my purpose and worth, integrity and relationship with God and man! Its been turmoil. I've sort of agonnised over these thoughts that turn into deep emotional feelings and the ache has gone alongside the physical wrenching of my body. So, there are my blues. I'd find no strength but to be in bed by 6.30pm and I'd not wake up enough to get out of bed till gone 9am at the earliest. Its been hard. I don't understand it and I know I'm struggling - somewhere, somehow.

Last night in the dark in my room, I read the Bible with a torch/flashlight. I read Isaiah 40, 41, 42. Amazing passages. I read Psalm 25. One part of Isaiah says "Like a shepherd he will tend his flock, in his arm he will gather the lambs and carry them in his bosom; he will gently lead the nursing ewes"

The image spoke to me and I saw the good shepherd - laying accross the gateway, the rain was pouring down and it was a moonlight night, he was strong and large and though it seemed he was sleeping - he was awake. And then I saw a lamb - small and dejected, cold and worn and dirty in the rain and sad in its heart. It was so close to the shepherd for it could see him sleeping, protecting the fold. It was far from friends or family and its little bleats could only travel so far accross the cold winds and there was no other sheep in sight. And so the lamb slowly went to the arms of the good shepherd and rested there, and he took the lamb in his arms and held it close. Yeah - and that lamb was me.

I can't desribe what I'm going though or even why, but I know my only true answer is the good shepherd who never sleeps or slumbers nor does he grow tierd. I am slow to know the love of the shepherd - even though I am so close to him and I skip along and try to follow him. I'm not sure why I do not rest more often in his loving and strong arms.

In writing this now I see another truth - God gives beauty for ashes. My lowest place is exchanged for beauty from God. And I am getting better, but I'm not through it yet - though the shepherd doesn't change - and he loves me, so aleast (or at the most) I've got strong arms to hold me.

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