Have you ever wanted to hide? I mean really hide where no one could find you? I remember a particular mommy moment when I had escaped to the garage away from one too many buts.
But I don’t want to!
But you SAID I could!
But she broke it, not me!
It was the next one that knocked me over the edge.
But she licked her fingers and then wiped them on me!
I remember sitting down on the grimy garage floor and thinking, Lord, I need a break from these people.
Jesus understands the deep urge to get away. We read in several places where Jesus removed himself from the crowd to get by himself. In Matthew 15, Jesus sent the crowd away, got into a boat, and sailed off by himself. In Matthew 4, he went to the desert for many days to pray, and in Luke 5, the Bible tells us that Jesus often withdrew to the wilderness to have some time alone. I can’t begin to know all that Jesus was feeling in these moments, but I wonder if he ever felt like I did in the garage. These people! They want and want and want! They are flat out wearing me out!
It’s in those moments when my heart needs a moment. A moment to recognize how small I am and how big God truly is. It’s in these moments that I’m reminded of my verse, Zephaniah 3:17. Yes, it’s mine. I’m positive God put it in there just for me, with my name on it that somehow got lost from the page in translation. It goes like this: Sherry, this is God speaking, and I am with you wherever you go. I am big enough to save you, Sherry, and not only you, but I’m bigger than anything you will face in your day. I know you get overwhelmed, but I’m rejoicing over you with gladness even in the moments when you lose it. I will quiet you with my love, if you will just let me. I see you even when you don’t want to be seen, and I’m singing over you in a loud voice.
Today my little people are grown, and their bickering doesn’t drive me to hide in the garage, but I still face “those moments” in my life when I want to bolt. The hard conversations, the moments I come to the end of myself in a leadership situation when I don’t have the answers. The moments when I face criticism and self-doubt. The moments when I think, I don’t have a clue what I will do about that! I still sink into this verse on a regular basis because it reminds me of God’s wild love for me. He sees me. He declares me his daughter—his good and beautiful daughter. He calls me to join him in his holy celebration of goodness, and it’s because of his deep and expansive love that I can take a moment and just rest. I can afford to take a time-out, with a deep breath, to notice the goodness and embrace the rest God has for me, to even celebrate what’s right in front of me.
Jesus was intentional about getting away. He didn’t just stay put and sit in the noise. He got off by himself so he could talk to God and allow space to breathe in the words from his heavenly Father. He needed to do this, and so do I.
When is the last time you took a “garage moment” away from the pressure? How many minutes where you able to just sit quietly, so quietly that you were able to hear your own breath? How long has it been since you invited God to invade this breath and fill it with the holy sweetness of his singing?
Friends, today is your day to go for it. Zephaniah 3:17 has your name on it too, and I’m willing to share.