One of my favourite books has to be ‘Hind’s feet on high places’ by Hannah Hurnard. This charming allegory of the Christian journey, brings to life the longing of God’s children to be led to new heights of love, joy, and victory. The story follows ‘Much-Afraid’ as she decides to answer the Shepherd’s call to follow Him on a long journey to the mountain top, the high places. A destination awaits her where she can be transformed into her true identity and find the freedom which she longs for! This is a story of true love, a story of trust, adventure and complete surrender, by willingly placing one’s life into the hands of the King of Kings!
Last month Josh and I received some very sad news, that his Grandpa Tony had passed away. We were coming to the end of lecture phase in Budapest and getting ready to go on outreach to Albania, when this took us by surprise. We used the last of our money and flew back to England for the funeral and to be with the family and found ourselves in a position of complete trust in the will and provision of God. During this time I began listening to the audio of ‘Hind’s feet on High places’ during those special times. The Holy Spirit really used this story to comfort and encourage me, until I came to a place of complete peace and rest in my heart. Wherever the will of God would want to take me I was happy to follow. I realised that it’s not about the place I am in, but the place where my heart is each day with Jesus. This turned into such a sweet time of devotion, as I placed all my trust in Him and learned to listen to His voice, and just enjoy loving Him! I felt hopeful that God was going to make a way for us to come to Albania and provide, but was also at peace if this detour was to be longer than I expected.
As much-afraid goes on her journey with the shepherd He takes her through various trials and challenges. At each point she has to make a choice. To trust the Shepherd and continue following Him to the high places, or turn back to the valley where she would remain lame and afraid. At each point she picks up a pebble, or stone to represent the things that she has given up to the Shepherd (Self-love, Pride, Fear. Loss, Control, Disappointments, Plans…..)
One of my favourite quotes from this book….
The Shepherd laughed too. “I love doing preposterous things,” he replied. “Why, I don’t know anything more exhilarating and delightful than turning weakness into strength, and fear into faith, and that which has been marred into perfection. If there is one thing which I should enjoy doing at this moment it is turning a jellyfish into a mountain goat. That is my special work,” he added with the light of a great joy in his face. “Transforming things —to take Much-Afraid, for instance, and to transform her into…….He broke off and then went on laughingly. “Well, we shall see later on what she finds herself transformed into….
God did provide for Josh and I during our 2nd week in England and we were able to buy flights, and we are still trusting Him to see us through the rest of this trip. We also received gifts and support from some very kind, generous people who we are very thankful to God for!
The first lesson I learned through this time is that no matter where I am, to know God and to love Him is the most important thing! The second is to live by faith, to hear His voice and walk in His will. When God speaks, if my heart is in the right place, my automatic default will be to answer His call! As we celebrated Kaylee’s birthday on the beach in Albania this week, I took a bit of time to just sit quiet with God. I took some time to remember God. To remind myself of His faithfulness to me and how He is always walking with me. As a symbol I made a a heart shaped out of seas shells and each shell represents all those things which I have given to God throughout my walk with Him thus far. I turned to Isaiah 41:8 in my Bible and was reminded of the words….
“But you, Israel, my servant, Jacob, whom I have chosen, you descendants of Abraham my friend, I took you from the ends of the earth, from its farthest corners I called you.
I said, ‘You are my servant’; I have chosen you and have not rejected you.
So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.
Behold me, here I am; thy little handmaiden Acceptance-with-Joy and all that is in my heart is Thine
Thank you Jesus for finding me and saving me. For taking my hand and walking with me through the highs and lows, peaks and valleys, trials and challenges of this life. I trust You. My life is for You alone!