Have you ever gone through your things to declutter and found something so profound that it took your breath away? That’s what happened to me this week.
I was never one to sit down and write out my feelings, but there was a time the year before my husband died that I did journal a little. For some reason whenever I packed our home up, I boxed up that journal that I had kept for just four months. What I had written a year before the date of Bob’s death (November 10, 2009) was astounding.
September 8, 2008
From this day forward this journal will contain things that God says directly to me. I back track to a very vivid dream that I had during the night of August 29th, 2008. In my dream the skies are stormy all around me and the winds are very strong. I have the feeling that either a tornado or hurricane is about on me. As the storm hits, I immediately drop to the ground and as I do, I sense that my hand is on the head of someone. I do not know who this person is.
As the storm rages all around me, I begin saying, “He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most high shall abide under the shadow of the almighty. (Psalm 91:1) I thank you, God, that I am dwelling in that secret place and am safe.”
I could feel the great intensity of the storm going on around me and this person, but I knew as long as I stayed in that secret place, I was safe.
August 31st, 2008
I asked the Holy Spirit who that other person was in my dream that I was praying over and comforting. The immediate answer was that it was ME.
When I was growing up, my dad planted a fir tree right in front of my bedroom window. It had been our Christmas tree and the branches were soft and full and the perfect hiding place for a little girl. It’s really amazing that that tree took root in the sandy Texas soil, but it did. Many a day I tucked myself away inside that tree where I felt safe and protected. It was a magical place where I imagined that no one could see me and I proved that during my first grade year when I hid inside the tree in order to miss the school bus.
Growing up on the Gulf of Mexico in South Texas I experienced several big hurricanes. Dad would board up our house and then take our family inland to stay at my maternal grandparents’ house. Grandma had a front living room with several couches that folded down into beds. She would bring out the old army cots and line them up to provide more sleeping arrangements there for us.
During the height of the hurricane it was imperative that the front door be left open so that the house would not implode. I remember lying there listening to the howling winds and the pounding rain, but never being afraid. I knew that Grandma was awake with her battery operated radio, candles, and her magnetic hurricane tracking map on the wall. She was watching over us making sure that we were safe. I was in that “secret place” in Grandma’s house where I felt so safe.
I have no doubt that my dream was a premonition of the great storm that was coming into my life from June, 2009 through March, 2010 as my husband and both parents were ushered out of this world into heaven. That was a time in my life when I was too numb with anticipatory grief and then full blown grief to feel God’s presence in my life.
How fitting it was that the last chapter of the Bible that Bob memorized was Psalm 91. In those months when I could not utter one word in prayer, all the verses that I had memorized growing up would one by one come into my mind just when they were needed. I was dwelling in that secret place because preparations had been made in my life ahead of time that enabled me to go there when the dark storm clouds overshadowed me and the winds raged around me.
Do you have a relationship with God where you can dwell in His secret place when the storms of live overwhelm you?