“Your present field may be limited, but you are not limited by your field.” L.B. Cowman
Sometimes life feels confining. Whether it’s the outer circumstances we are facing, or the inner turmoil we can’t seem to wrestle ourselves free from, we feel bound. Stuck. Closed in. And it’s angst-provoking, on the best day. Frustration and anxiety, fear and anger seem to spring up like choking weeds, threatening to transform the landscape before us into something worthless. Or worse, threatening to confirm that it can’t be anything more.
I’ve lived in such a place for more than two years now. The circumstances of my life have been such that my field – the place to which I have been confined – looks pretty bare. For most of these two years, I have struggled to see anything more than barrenness. The landscape is littered with broken promises, reminders of my own deep weakness, and devastation at the level of natural disasters – seemingly without reasonable cause. Things that just appeared to come out of nowhere have broken in and leveled my harvest.
So, I’ve come to the conclusion – as I have studied this land before me – that I have two viable choices: I can surrender to hopelessness and bury myself among the shards that surround me, or I can rise up and dance to the music of heaven, which promises that, out of death and devastation, new life always emerges. By the power of God’s grace.
I have chosen the latter. Not because I have the strength or the wisdom to, but because something in me – I suspect it is the life of the Spirit of God, which cannot be killed – refuses to surrender to the death I see before me. What, to my human eyes, looks like fierce and impenetrable limitation, my spirit sees as a field still full of promise. What seems and feels empty and barren to my broken heart, beckons my soul to dance upon a freshly cleared, spacious floor. And somehow, in the deep part of me, I know that agreeing to dance will break open a harvest I cannot fathom from this view.
So it is a dance of faith which I’ve been summoned to. And the dance begins with each new morning, as I dare to step out of my bed and into my day, agreeing to face whatever may come with the bold hope that there is more to my barren field of life than meets my eye. It is a fierce determination – not my own, but borrowed from the heavens that have opened themselves up to me again today – that I will do more than merely survive here. It is the grace-full choice to rejoice, even in the face of loss and devastation, because there remains yet a promise that God will turn all of these ashes into something beautiful.
This is why I choose to remain, instead of run. This is why I choose to pray, instead of indulging in other distractions that might numb the pain or blur the marred portrait I now see. This is why I can’t help but believe that there has to be more than this, if I will only believe.
So I begin today with a deep, measured breath, and a giant leap of faith that carries me into the first steps of this dance. And I am beginning to find, as I do, that this is a dance orchestrated by Heaven. And this is, indeed, a field full of promise. And with each step, there is new hope that emerges. There are more Heavenly notes that follow, inviting me to keep on dancing. There is more rejoicing which invites me into more faith, and reveals yet more of the harvest hidden here, in this apparently barren land.
How I pray that you will have fresh eyes to see the field of your life transformed today. How I hope that you will find a rainbow of promise over the space which confines you. And how I believe that Heaven’s song is also inviting you to dance, and to see – with every step of that dance – what is hidden within that space, just waiting to be received by the heart that is full of faith. May you look up today, and discover all the help you need!