He draws near to my heart uplifted and does what I don’t expect. Swiftly, He blows with that breath like wind, and then I see what I couldn’t see before.
Flying with the gust of His breath scatter the little gatherings of my soul I’d been collecting unaware and stockpiling at the surface. These little measurements and fragments of evaluations that I esteemed as necessary to bring to Him – to make the focus of our conversation together – He blows like chaff from the surface.
And like when dust is blown from a beautiful piece, and the treasure is exposed beneath, He exposes the beauty of what I didn’t realize I’d forgotten: who I am to Him.
He speaks that name,
Oh my dove…(Song of Sol. 2:14).
It’s that name that means He sees in me something of singleheartedness and purity, a loyalty to Him that He will empower to stand the test of time.
And the recollection hits me in waves. He sees and evaluates so differently than I do. Underneath my own evaluations – like shards of straw – is identity. It’s the eternal reality of who I will always be – the beloved one that He chose and redeemed (Eph. 1:4-6; Col 3:12).
We’re always looking at the gaps and He never forgets the ultimate gap that He Himself closed in His death and resurrection, making us His forever (Col. 1:21). We’re persistently fixated on our inconsistencies and He’s beholding not just who we are in this moment but who we’ll be for all eternity.
This is what His breath exposes after He chases the rest away. Like that treasure beneath the dust is that glimmering reality that ever shines before His eyes. We are His purchased possession, bought with a price and precious forever (Eph. 1:14; 1 Cor. 7:23).
[framed_box]Like that prodigal son who came home to his father with speech prepared, and his father, having caught glimpse of him from a long way off, ran to greet him with open arms, we sometimes come to Him in the everyday moments. With our mouths full of confessions and self-evaluations, we approach Him.
And then He does what we’re least expecting. He brings a robe to wrap us in. We bring our lists and measurements and He, hearing not a word of it, puts a ring upon our finger (Lk. 15:20-32).[/framed_box]
Most days we forget who we are to Him, forget in one moment the whole storyline of grace that brought us near to Him (Eph. 2:13). And we approach Him in the place of prayer – that conversation of the heart – with what we think matters first to Him. We draw near to Him clenching fists ’round bits of measurements and tallies of our shortcomings and our plans for change. And He blows it all away, because we’re forgetting…
[framed_box]We’re forgetting our forever starting place – that foundation of the mercy that tore open Heaven and descended to the manger, the love that gave its own Beloved – the only Son – and the Son who gave His own life to redeem us (Jn. 3:16; Rom. 8:32; Eph. 5:2).
And we’re forgetting how He sees us even when our love for Him is still so weak. He sees straight to the heart and with a perspective like a straight-shot to eternity (1 Sam. 16:7; Jd. 1:24; Eph. 5: 27).[/framed_box]
And the Lord, our loving Father, runs to us as we draw near from a distance. He blows away our chaff and interrupts our speeches by wrapping us in a robe – saying in essence:
You’ve forgotten who you are again! You’re not remembering how I see you. You’re looking narrow and I’m seeing wide. I know where I’ve brought you in My redemption and where I will lead you in bright righteousness. I know who you are forever. You are Mine (Eph. 1:18; Song of Sol. 2:16).
And He turns to those servants that do His bidding to say, “Bring a robe! Bring a ring! She’s forgotten her identity. Wrap him again in the truth of who he is to Me, irrevocably.”
And we stand before Him then, robe encircling and tears streaming, our rehearsed speeches stifled by His embrace and our gathered measurements scattered by His breath.
And we draw near with hearts wide open and with full assurance, remembering again what we hadn’t realized we’d forgotten – just who we are to Him (Eph. 3:12; Heb. 10:22).