O Lord, You are my refuge, my portion in the land of the living. Attend to my loud cry, for I am brought very low; deliver me from my persecutors, for they are stronger than I. Bring my life out of prison, that I may confess, praise, and give thanks to Your name; the righteous will surround me and crown themselves because of me, for You will deal bountifully with me. (Ps. 142)
David was overlooked as the youngest son. When the prophet arrived at his home, he was not even considered by Samuel, nor his father, as God’s chosen to be anointed King. David was the last to arrive because he was tending his father’s sheep. (See 1 Samuel 16) What David cultivated in the pastures as an obedient earthly son was the intimacy of heavenly sonship. God taught him lessons of faith, courage, and strength in coming against predators of the vulnerable sheep. He was soaked in divine solitude so much so that God labeled him as a “man after my own heart.”
Many of us are doing David’s life in reverse. We have been tossed around by the world, even confused by the religious teachings we’ve heard in church, and now we are finding ourselves “caught in a cave” crying out to God: You are my refuge! We feel the draw of God calling us deeper into His hold, to rest on His chest, to yield to His Presence, receiving His revelation of Who He is to us and in us.
Harder than any gym workout is renewing my mind with the truth: Jesus’ own crucifixion has empowered us to crucify our fleshly perfectionism so that we can be still and know that He is God. Crucifying the flesh requires we put on Christ simultaneously otherwise we revert back to the default setting of striving to make the flesh holy, and it just keeps our wheels spinning until we cry out: I’m done! My spirit is willing, but my flesh wants to hold on to control! So we find ourselves “caught in a cave” alone with God and the stink of our rotting flesh. I wish there was an acceleration button.
Fire is consuming my default drive (control) and revealing my desperate need for friendship with God’s Holy Spirit, to fill me, empower me, speak to me, teach me, father me, comfort me, consume me.
It is unlike any season I’ve walked through to date. It’s not about fighting for justice, nor is it about focusing on the transformation of others. No, this season is about me being the beloved of God and I’m caught in a cave until He has captured my whole heart. Yes, I am a prisoner of divine love and God help me to redeem every moment of this sweet solitude.