About a month ago a friend of mine shared part of his journey, where he had come from. Hearing about the road he had walked in order to become the person he is today, I felt inspired and encouraged to look at my own story.
So I sat down to write, and an avalanche of experiences overwhelmed me. I had brain freeze with no idea where to start or what to write. I paused, took a step to the side of my avalanche, out of harms way, and asked for help from the Author himself. A gentle nudge on my heart opened my mind to a picture that slowly formed.
This is what came forward, so I step out and share it here…
I’ve realised that I’ve never shared my story as a whole before. Snippets have been explored before but even then the snippets were just a brief glance at a grain of sand that was just one which made up an entirety of a beach.
The rabbit warrens go deep below the surface, one leading into another which of-shoots on to several which disperse the deeper they go.
In order to make sense of it all, to share a glimpse of where I come from, I present to you an allegory:
At the beginning of time the Master Craftsman built a house.
The house was shaped and sculpted with intricate detail, perfection in its plans and beauty in its design. Although this was the foundation of thought the house was built upon it did not remain so.
Through the workings of time the Craftsman’s fingers wove together an outworking of his overall goodness and blessing upon the house as it weathered all that the exterior was thrown.
Upon entering the house, a guest is welcomed into the front portion of the inside. The entry way is beautiful in its own right, with small tokens of character laid about. There is warmth here, no judgment and a slight wondering about what is through the hallway which stands open beyond the threshold.
Many guests who come upon the front part of the house seldom have an understanding of what is beyond what they can not see. Some are welcome up to the point of entry for the hallway, some are welcome to explore the first few rooms of off the hall, some hold the experience of having helped build what is in some of the rooms, some have the honour of being able to step further into the home where vulnerability lays, and a very rare few know a majority of the capacity the house holds, but only One knows it all.
In this moment of time, the house is open, an invitation is extended and as a guest I will guide you through the rooms so that you might experience if but for a moment the overall wonder and goodness of the Master Craftsman:
There is a room filled with the love for children, 12, to be exact. Their faces are etched in the memory of the walls, they may never know the depth this room holds for each one, but the seeds that were once planted will grow and the shade of those trees will be a source of rest for others.
There is a room which holds the precious art of the Craftsman, mosaic art to be specific. This was once a room filled with whole vessels, but a crack began to show in one, its name is infidelity and it caused a tremor to the surface of the room, the vessels shattered, and not one was left unscathed. Over time the Master Artist has gathered the broken pieces up piece by piece and has started to create a picture of life filled with colour and vivacity.
There is a room that was erected quiet suddenly, like a thief in the night. A great cavern lay in the middle of it and the house felt that although a room was added, the hole it brought with it was like that of a maelstrom. The Craftsman knew such a day would come, so, with his Carpenter they made their presence known in this room. Over time the Carpenter with His gentle hands carved out the rot that was at the edges of the hole and he slowly mended that which was once lifeless. There is always work to be done in this particular room, and occasionally no matter what the weather may be doing outside of the house, without warning a flood fills the room, for but a moment, and then it will recede, the water lapping over the repaired marks the Carpenter has made, acknowledging their part of the rooms history.
There is a room which had a darkness slowly creep through the gaps. The darkness became so dense and so suffocating that the room produced a noose as an escape from the prison it had become. The noose hung tauntingly and a war raged but the noose did not win. The breath of life and hope etched through the prison walls, and over time light filled the room, like the dawn breaking through the night. The room now lays open to the exterior which produced a garden of abundance in beauty where the hope and life of the house is cultivated and nurtured. At times, like a straying vine, darkness tries to edge its way in, but the sun casts a shadow and the darkness can not survive.
There is a room where a road dwells. There are few footprints upon this road, but each print carries with it a great weight. One set of prints sinks into the depths of the earth, weigh laid with the struggle against the powers of adversity. The foot prints close next to them are lighter and at times the only ones there as the occupant helped carry the other when they could no longer walk. This road tells the story of the battle such as the house had never seen. A battle into the depths of hell, but the gates of Hades did not succeed. The Lion of Judah, in his majesty and splendour, set the captives free.
There is a room which was once violated by the most unsuspecting guest. The scars of this room run deep and in secrecy it was kept locked. The light was never turned on in this room, until one day it did. With the light, tenderness and compassion of truth covered the room suffocating the blanket of shame that had once held the secret captive.
There is a room that once stood bare and naked, alone and isolated. Little was the room aware of how the wood of the walls, floors and ceilings were being carved with soft accuracy, creating a woven tapestry of connection and beauty where loneliness was seen for the lies that it is.
There is a room which holds an abandoned playground. The swings have been deserted, the leaves from winters past have gathered trapped underneath the slides, jungle gyms and climbing ropes have been left purposelessly hanging as the shadow of rules, responsibility and guidelines silencing the echo of children’s laughter.
There is a room where one body stood upon a rock. The body had many functions, not one was the same as the other, like clogs in a grandfather clock they worked simultaneously producing good works for the Master Creator. But the whisper of discourse spread through this body and the body turned against itself. A clog was severed from the body, discarded and left for the judgement of men. But this room was built by the Craftsman and it knew the foundations it was standing on. The judgement of man was just that of poor character and disillusionment, only the judgement of the Craftsman mattered and in him there is no condemnation. The clog was picked up by the hands of Potter and a new mould started to form.
There is a room where a heart is the epicentre. There are golden threads attached to the heart and they lead of in connection to several other hearts. There is a wealth in here, a richness beyond all possessions. Some hearts lost the value of the room’s focus, and they cut their thread and walked away. Their thread remains in this stately room, always remembered, the scar of their empty place etched in. It is the ones that stay though that hold true the testament of time.
There is a room in which an ocean lies. A pebble is dropped and the ripple effects run deep, carrying beyond the horizon. Each pebble sinks into the ocean floor indenting and scaring what is unseen. The ripples go beneath the surface leaving only a stillness and calm on top of the waters where the work of the ferrymen carries on giving purpose to the expanse of blue.
There is a room that has the memories and scars of a tussle that took place. A struggle between a carrier of light and a cloak of shame. The Craftsman wielded the Carrier of Light into the centre of the cloak, piercing its heart and turning it into a garment of white, weightless and pure.
There is a room where a maze and a puppet resides. The puppet walks through the maze with a compass in one hand and a malleable piece of gold in the other. There are areas of the maze where there are ‘Watchers’. They throw compasses with of-kilter magnets at the puppet, or they laden the puppet down with cloaks disguised as warmth and comfort but are instead lined with weighted coal. A day of reckoning is coming for the maze.
There is a room where an elderly lady lives. She is bed ridden, but her heart dreams of a land beyond the windows she looks out each day. The Carpenter comes to visit her regularly and she delights in his company. The Carpenter is gentle with her, he massages her aching bones, listens to her lost years and on occasions when she is feeling up to it the Carpenter lifts her up and carries her outside. When inside, she weary, her skin sags below her feet, her breathing is heavy and her motivation low. As she is carried through the threshold, into the open air and amongst sea of green she stands out from the arms of her carrier, she unzips her frail frame and a youth steps out, vibrant and full of life. The moment does not last long though. Eventually the youth steps back into the garment that was left at the threshold. She zips her frail frame back up and steps inside the room, weary once again. Some time ago, in the corner of this room, a bud had formed. The vine which the bud was upon, crept along the edges of the walls of the room. Each blossom opening in their turn. Each blossom bringing with it, hope to the youth inside of the skin. For the youth knew that when the last blossom opened, she would step out of what was once old and step into the new.
There is a river that runs through the foundations of the house. The Craftsman, in his perfect design, created it as such. The river did not lessen or weaken the house. Instead, the water from the river seeped into the wood of the house and provided it with an everlasting life. As if the wooden boards were still connected to the roots from whence they came, breathing in, from the well of the earth beneath it.
By wisdom a house is built, and through understanding it is established; through knowledge it’s rooms are filled with rare and beautiful treasures. (Proverbs 24:3-4 NIV)
Jesus answered and said to him, If anyone loves me, he will keep my Word; and my Father will love him, and We will come to him and make Our home in him. (John 14:23 NKJV)
In my Father’s house there are many rooms…I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may also be. John 14:2-3 NKJV)