It's late, but I can't sleep. I've been tossing and turning for ages. Finally, I've crawled out of bed and found a cozy little corner in my lounge, wrapped up in my warmest gown. (Shew but it's quiet when everyone is asleep!) There is a word stuck in my heart that I need to explore with you tonight. "Beloved". Short and sweet. Simple, yet deeply profound in turning our lives around. Here's what's rolling around in my heart ...
It all started with a greeting I read in the book of 3 John 1:2. "Beloved, I wish above all things that you may prosper and be in health, even as your soul prospers." That simple little verse has arrested my heart on and off for weeks now. Lately, God has been dealing with me graciously (and p-a-t-i-e-n-t-l-y) about "decluttering" my heart and everyday life from things that are stealing my time and drawing away my focus from where it needs to be in order for me to thrive and prosper (like this verse talks about).
I always know that I have some heart issues to deal with, when I am not prospering in my health or soul. (Our soul speaks of our mind, will and emotions). This came as a big revelation to me a few weeks ago. I had been feeling quite irritable, discontent and missioning with stress symptoms in my body when I first read this verse and realised that my body was trying to get my attention to show me that I had some heart matters to take care of. Here was my big light-bulb revelation ... if my health and soul aren't prospering, somewhere along the way I have a love-lack in my revelation or acceptance of how much God loves me. In other words, somewhere, I am carrying a heart wound. I say this because this very verse starts with the word "BELOVED". Unless we are living in an active revelation of being the beloved of God ... (actively BEING loved by Love Himself) ... we cannot prosper in all the fullness and freedom that Christ has created us to live and thrive in. We either start striving in our own ability or seek out love or acceptance in other places that never fully satisfy and lead us into stress and anxiety. Stress, we know, is one of the biggest causes of sickness in our bodies. The fact is that our body and soul cannot prosper, if our hearts aren't prospering in love. It is only God's full and accepting love that releases us to truly thrive in joy, peace and freedom. I see it so clearly in my own life. I have always known that my precious Jesus loves me, but when I get distracted and caught up with the cares and stresses of life and shift my focus from drawing my love and acceptance from Him on a regular, fresh & living basis, before I realise it I find myself back in old patterns of striving or hiding. (How easy it is for us to stuff our pain away and try to ignore it. Sadly though, it will always keep resurfacing until we finally deal with it). It has been so powerful for me to see the incredible connection between my heart, soul and body and that my heart issues manifest in my body and soul.
When I read that word "beloved", God broke it down to me this way ... "Be.Loved." The whisper through my soul was "Janni ... be loved my girl. You don't have to strive, earn, work for, deserve or any other laboursome-effort. Simply BE loved by Me. On the merit of what my heart is towards you ... BE loved. Not on any merit of what you think you've worked for or deserved."
I have been a Christian for 32 years, yet God continues to bowl me over with how vast His amazing love is and how small my revelation is in accepting that bigness into my heart and life. Why we wrestle against it, I do not know. We can be so very hard on ourselves and stubborn beyond belief, yet He gets us and He just continually draws us back to the basics in order to lead us into freedom. That freedom will always be rooted in His love and truth. No matter how stubborn or far away from that love we push, He NEVER stops reaching out to us in love .... calling each of our names and carrying on from where we left off with Him. He has the amazing capacity to take hold of any moment we give Him and reveal Himself to us through His Word when we simply come and see Him standing in the midst of our every day lives.
This one little verse ... a simple greeting, has been my precious Jesus speaking so deeply into my heart, showing me places of avoidance and pain in my own heart and leading me into heart healing and freedom yet again. He understands our complicated hearts.
What is He speaking into your heart today? Whatever He navigates and helps you to see in your own heart right now, know with an unshakeable peace that He is drawing you into a broader place of freedom and joy unspeakable. Heart healing always leads our soul and body into prosperity. That after all, has always been His heart for us ... the promise of "ABUNDANT life" in Him, because we are His precious "beloved". Today, my prayer for you is that you will take this moment to stop and "BE loved" by Love Himself.
All my love xxx
ps - Yay! I think that I am finally ready to go to sleep with a settled heart! Happy dance!!!