You hem me in, behind and before, and lay your hand upon me.
(David, Psalm 139:5)
We are distressed/hard-pressed/troubled/squeezed on every side…
(Paul, 2 Corinthians 4:8)
Nobody puts ‘Baby’ in a corner.
(Johnny Castle, Dirty Dancing)
I’m feeling ‘hemmed in’ these days. Diminished. Limited. Grounded, like a teenager: no keys, no car, no friends. Just school, then home.
On top of that, I feel cornered. Outnumbered.
It’s redolent of a scene in Thor where the Viking hero and his compatriots infiltrate the Frost Giant’s lair and are met by a relentless enemy in wave after wave, each giant becoming more formidable than the last and more numerous than before.
Yeah, that captures it nicely.
On every front a vexing battle is being waged and it seems like I am losing ground.
Some fronts are more like skirmishes while others border on “Shock and Awe.” These days I look like the Arizona border, Iraq (in March, 2003) and Afghanistan all rolled into one.
Lord, is it warfare?
Am I being downsized? Capsized? Ostracized?
Then, like good news from home, these words came for me when I was about to arrive at some ill-advised conclusions:
On your behalf I speak to adversity, for I the Lord come to bring the power of My voice over the power that has come against you. For, I have been given all authority, and by that authority I speak over your life that you may be totally free from all adversity, oppression, depression, fear, anxiety and worry. When I am with you, you cannot be defeated. I speak into your life–peace be still. And, there will come a great calm and a great benefit. No longer allow yourself to sit down in the very pit and doldrums of failure, but arise to new heights. As the sun rises each day, arise and shine for you are the people of light; the children of light and the glory of My kingdom upon the earth. It is time for you to come to a new understanding of who you are in Me and who I am in you. It is time for you to feel the power of My wind upon you; the power of the wind that flows through your mind and regenerates your spirit. Come this day and receive a fresh baptism and allow the wind of My Spirit to move you and to lift you. Come and fly with Me, says the Lord.
On the other hand, I could be hearing:
That doesn’t negate the rhema word. Whether I’m being intentionally hemmed in (like a time-out for an unreasonable child) or it’s just my time for the gardener’s shears—either way—my trust is in God and I purpose to stay the course.
Faith may not know where it’s going, but it is in love with its Leader.
In faith, this day, I have it on good authority that I am not being shelved or downsized. Neither are you. We’re being prepped for reassignment. “Faithful is He who calls you, who also will do it.”
In faith, this day, I declare that “friends may fail me, foes assail me” but, hear this enemy: “He my Savior makes me whole.” Jesus. What a Friend for Sinners. I know He loves me to death, but not like Lenny in Of Mice and Men who loved a little too hard. His Hands enfold me, they do not crush me.
Though He slay me…even if there’s no seed in the barn and the cattle barns are empty…no figs on the branches…if this infection never leaves my body and my leg falls off…if (fill in your own blank here)…
I will rejoice in the Lord!
I will be joyful in the God of my salvation!
The Sovereign Lord is my strength!
He makes me sure-footed as a deer, able to tread upon the heights!
Hemmed in. Targeted. Isolated. Pressed on every side. Fire on one side and flood on the other.
Do not despair, o my soul.
He always brings us through and out, and gloriously IN.