The Mirror Image

The antique high chair
Cradles a seed-cushioned lap desk
A makeshift pulpit.

My audience mocks me
Speaks every word I say
a mirror image,
A face I know well.

I listen to what            
the image says and I wonder
if she really reflects me
or just who I want to be?

I talk about days when
Fear and insecurity
Motivated my life
Led me to a place where
God sent His Word
Healed me
While a hair dryer hummed
In my ear.

The IPad records,
The phone keeps time,
a stop-watch.
I practice because
I might be
Doing this story telling
with fear and insecurity.
The image knows that I am.

I pull back the curtain
Open the door, sit on the rock ledge
warm with the afternoon sun.
The back porch is the place
I often perch to pray—over pine trees
Songbirds flitting and darting
Nest building.

No words, I listen-pray.
I leave the interceding for those
Who stand beside me, battle for me
They know that I tremble to tell,
know I find it hard to embrace the call.

The breeze soothes
The sun embraces.
I know the story.
I didn’t make it up.
A gentle blowing …
In still silence..the Word says

I slip on the starched white shirt,
The canary yellow linen jacket,
Blue jeans.
Grab the big blue NASB I got the year
God sent the healing Psalm.
Manila envelope clutched under my arm
I am out the door.

And He goes with me
To the stage,
A voice through a microphone
And then He embraces the lady
who steps from the front row
To weep in my arms
that are really His arms.

She weeps
Because my story is hers.
Wrapped up, 
the pain released 
gentle sobs
upon my shoulder.

Closed eyes see clearly.
Eyes closed in prayer,
Surrounded by praise.
The mirror image fades.
The image of Jesus 
reflects His life
revealed in me.

I wonder
at the Mystery
of the One who made me
in His image.
Some day, face to face.
Until then in the mirror dimly.

Last night, my church hosted a community-wide worship event for women. The event crossed many  denominational lines. This is our third month to meet and we plan on meeting at a different church each month. The only men in the room were running the sound board! We had nine women on instruments or singing leading worship, and three speakers who gave testimony to the grace of God in their lives. I was one of those speakers.

(By the way, we like men but they do the same thing we did last night every month. Our inspiration came from what God is doing among the Sons of Thunder. We call the women's ministry Daughter's of Light.)

It was quite humbling for me to speak to my community, a place where I have lived for over twenty years. I need to be humbled--- over and over again. I have lived in pride and I know I could "catch" it again. I come down with it occasionally. I promise you that.

One thing I know is, I will never get over what Christ has done for me. As Jennifer Dukes Lee said in a blog last week, "This is the very best way to destroy a story: never tell it." I took her up on the advice from her post, battled away the insecurities and I told the story--- twice in the past week. That isn't something I do often. It just happened to be what God called me to on this leg of the journey.

This story I struggle to tell?  

You can read a short part of it here: From the Deepest Well, the Way Up is Up. 

My advice is never get to the place where the way up is up. The truth is that "the way up is down."


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