Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Deep Tissue Massage

Recently I had a deep tissue massage. I had thought it would be just like a regular massage, only with more pressure. Not so! The therapist began by placing her elbow into one of the large muscles on my back and putting all her weight on me, pressing hard on the knotted muscle. From there she applied pressure all over the back, shoulder, arms and chest, even between the ribs. I’ll be honest here—it hurt! But as she applied the pressure, I could feel the knotted muscles loosening. I endured the pain, knowing it would result in greater comfort.

Physically, I feel better after a massage, but how does one massage away spiritual knots and pains? All of us have those pains, both recent and long ago, that flare up on occasion and keep us knotted up with sins of worry, fear, pride, anger, bitterness, or unforgiveness.  When we feel those spiritual knots of sin, we go to our heavenly Father for a spiritual massage. Yes, it will be painful, but afterward we will feel much better. The more often we visit our “masseuse,” the better we feel. During our spiritual massage we confess our sins, and ask for God’s forgiveness. Only then will His strength loosen the knots within us.

I John 1:8 & 9 “If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.”

Saturday, March 10, 2012

The Dawning of a New Day

There’s something magical about the early morning hours. Today, awakening at 5 am, earlier than usual, I walked through the darkened house, barely able to see my way. Ever so gradually, the darkness thinned to gray, allowing me clearer vision. Through the sheer curtains at our dining room’s sliding glass doors, I witnessed an ever brightening sky. Drawn by the light, I pulled back the curtains and watched the horizon lighten: first pale gray, then a blush of pink, then golden light. As daylight dawned, the world outside my door came into focus: the patio, the trees, my neighbor’s homes. Before long, the sun shone brightly in the eastern sky: a new day had begun.

In the early morning stillness, I have time to reflect. There have been times in my life that I walked through darkness: times of illness and difficulties kept me stumbling in the dark, days that I struggled to find my way. In those times of darkness I’ve learned to put my trust in God, to allow Him to illuminate my path. As I’ve trusted in Him, my vision has improved and I’ve been able to put one foot in front of the other, following His light. Whenever I watch the light, the world around me comes into focus and I see, step by step, the pathway ahead.

Thank you, Father, for this new day. Help me to trust in you to guide my steps today.

Psalm143:8 “Let the morning bring me word of your unfailing love, for I have put my trust in you. Show me the way I should go, for to you I lift up my soul.”