Friday, January 1, 2010

I am absolutely complete

As a year ends it’s common to hear the phrase “out with the old, in with the new.” Even though I know God does not measure time in my life by the turning of a calendar page, it always feels to me as if a new day is dawning.


At the end of each year I reflect by reviewing my journals for the year. I then contemplate the year to come as I hear Him ask me, "What do you want me to do for you this year, Jewel?"


It does my heart good to remember all that God has said and done. This time I felt the tug to do something a little different. I heard the Spirit prompting me to go back to 2004 and read forward. So I did. Those who know me, know that's alot of reading as I am quite the journaler. My family often teases me in regards to my many journals.


By the time I got to the end of 2009 I knew what He was asking of me. I could not hold onto the data that filled the sheets of paper any longer. The words rang out clearly inside my head, "forget the former things, I'm doing something new."


I had journals from as far back as the 1990's full of data. It was time to lay them aside and remove all records of wrongs. God keeps no record of wrongs, He was asking me to let mine go too.


Filtered throughout the pages of each journal were accounts of offenses that had been done by me, and to me. It was time to give myself and those who had offended me a clean slate. I had at some level done that as I had forgiven the injustices long before. But dwelling between the covers of each book were well kept documentations that brought the memories back to life. They would continue to dwell there until they were destroyed. Christ beckoned me to let go.


In the wee hours of the morning of New Year’s Eve I knew it was time. I gathered several up and began the process of turning the sheets of pages into ashes as I began to burn each journal.


As the ashes filled the fireplace I knew it was symbolic of what He had repetitively told me through the pages I had just read. He was turning my ashes into beauty.


As the fire burned I pondered the year to come. I decided to look up the Jewish meaning of the number ten, as numbers carried meaning to the Hebrews. Ten means absolute completion.


Suddenly I could see something I'd missed for years. There planted in John, between two tens was my promise for the new year. “The thief comes only to steal, kill and destroy, but I have come that they might have life and have it to the full," (John 10:10). The thief has tried to steal me away from my reality. Jesus has come to dwell inside me to make me absolutely complete. Just like my journals, He has burned my past into ashes. It is no more. His life in me realized will be my completion.


As I watched the pages of my life burn my heart cried out. "Beauty for ashes, dear Jesus." "Take the ashes and turn them into the beauty of your life in me realized completely.


The "it is finished" life of Christ dwells in me richly replacing the ashes of the past. His life is my beauty.


On this new day of this new year, my heart cries out. Oh that I might live my reality. I am absolutely complete.


©copyrighted: 2010, Julie L. Todd






18 comments:

christy rose said... Reply to comment

He gives me His beauty for my ashes and yours!
This is a beautiful post Julie!

Sita said... Reply to comment

t'is a beautiful thing to realize His completion in you...

Amy said... Reply to comment

This is absolutely BEAUTIFUL, Julie!

Great POWER has been released in this act of "Letting Go."

And I especially love the symbolism of the number 10...God is SO awesome in the way He speaks to His children through signs and symbols!

Nichole Patrick said... Reply to comment

Gosh, Jewels, you make me want to cry, smile and laugh all at once. You are an amazing creation of God and I'm thankful everyday that He has allowed our paths to cross. You are a beautiful friend, inside and out. Much love to you and yours during this amazing new year!

Laura said... Reply to comment

Beautiful, Julie. The beauty He reflects in you is stunning. He re-writes those pages, shows the past in a new light.

Happy New Year, Jewelzie! Love to you!

Karen said... Reply to comment

Beautiful, Julie...my jaw always drops after I read your posts...I am in awe of how you share from your heart and it so deeply touches mine....

Mary said... Reply to comment

Wow Julie. That was a powerful post. And I can totally relate to it. I deleted a lot of my old 'journal' entries on my computer a while back because it stirred up too much in me and I didn't like it.

Seems like we're on the same journey - freed from religion and learning more about Papa. I love it!

Happy New Year. I look forward to reading you this year. I'm adding you to my blogroll, my network blogs and my google reader!

Mary

taylorphillips said... Reply to comment

WOW! as an avid journaler too, i can envision how difficult it would've been for me at first to release my own pages into the flame. your obedience to Him and your willingness to look forward is beautiful! hoping this year allows you to fill more new pages with Him. :)
p.s. thank you so much for stopping by my blog and commenting! looking forward to reading yours as well!

naomi said... Reply to comment

Julie,

what a wonderful "letting go" ....

it will bring beauty..already has :-)
love you!!!!

Happy new year...we will have to spend some time together soon :-)

Family, Money and Stuff said... Reply to comment

Powerful! Thank you for sharing your intimate walk with God. I'm blessed and challenged by what you share. Makes me realize I need to ask God what he wants me to do with my journals... they are his afterall..

Your obedience is an example to others, to me. Thank you.

I am walking towards the freedom He promised. Away from religion, rules, legalism that enslaves, and learning to embrace his grace and love. Thank you for walking ahead of me and sharing your story. God uses you and others like you to speak to my heart and set me free too.

Paula said... Reply to comment

Absolutely beautiful, Julie. Thank you for sharing this journey with me.

Hi I'm Anna said... Reply to comment

I loved reading this entry...

good word for all of us...

Cindy said... Reply to comment

Julie, You know from past contacts that we have some things in common. I too LOVE to journal, could not even count how many I have. I just can't imagine letting them go. I am amazed at how obedient you are. I don't know how many injustices or wrongs may be written in mine but I do know there are many blessings and great things I want to remember. How do you let that go?
I love this post! I probably need to do the same thing but WOW - HOW?!?!
I'm praying -
Can't wait to hear of all the beauty God has given you because of your willingness to let go!
Blessings, Cindy

Julie said... Reply to comment

Cindy,
I had started in 2002 to "summarize" what God was doing. I felt like 2002 was the year that I began to step out of the path of religion to find relationship, though I had been following Him since 1980. So what I did before letting go was to summarize the good of the journal entries. I deleted all records of wrongs, (things that I had listed that had hurt me) and kept all the good, (words God had spoken, places of restoration, revelation, etc). I also left the struggles I had found in my walk into believing Him. I felt like the struggles were part of the good as they revealed the victory God won in our wrestling matches.

I was HARD to let go... yet I knew it was what He asked of me. I'm not saying He's asking of everyone.. just me.

There was something that about it that I knew was releasing me and those I love. I can't explain it.

God will make it clear to you if this is something He desires for you to do... It was the right time for me. I felt it in my bones!

I am working on writing down my journey into grace. It's what got me to go back and revisit the journals in the first place. I wanted to remember what He had done. In the process I was forced to revisit things I had forgiven. It was then I knew that I could no longer keep a record of wrongs... as neither did He.

Thanks to all of you who have commented here. I'll be by to visit in the next day or so... as life is returning to some normalcy after the holidays!

Love to all!

Christy Polek said... Reply to comment

What a beautiful and powerful post!
Thanks for sharing it!
And thanks for stopping by my blog =]
I look forward to following your posts and getting to know you more.

Cindy said... Reply to comment

Thank you so much Julie, for your response. I will know if it is ever time to 'burn' my journals. I absolutely see why you did it and if I ever reread some of mine I would probably need do the same. I am quite sure there are numerous entries which need to be destroyed for one reason or another;)
I am always blessed by your writings though I may not get here as often as I would like. I love being able to catch snipets on FB and then I know when I NEED to come read what the Lord has spoken to you. Blessings, Cindy

tiggerdaisy said... Reply to comment

Absolutely beautiful!

May you fill your journals this yeear with the "new" He has for you!

Prayers and blessings,
Rebecca

Craig said... Reply to comment

First, I followed you from Ann’s

So your word in naming your year is “complete” I think? To be complete – and know it won’t happen fully until heaven – but to see what IS complete now?

And to burn your journals – wow. Hard to do I bet – but I heart that.

My word is connecting, not just by clicking, or meeting, but by seeing better and knowing better.

I’ve just finished praying for your year of ten – of “completeness” for God to tie up ends, and create new beginnings.

May God bless and you and all of yours