I am walking down the wide path. Alone. No, wait, not alone. I’ve been enveloped by something like fairy dust, but it’s a living, moving being. It surrounds me and follows me, like a trail of colorful, floating glitter. Ah, it’s Goodness and Mercy! I remember Psalm 23:6, that goodness and mercy will follow me all the days of my life. So, of course, there they are.
As I am walking along, all of the sudden my box, the gift given to me by the Lord, pops open, startling me. Fireworks and confetti fly everywhere. It’s a big moment. An intense moment. I actually begin to fall backwards but before I hit the ground, there is Goodness and Mercy to hold me up. And then I notice them. There are people all around. They’ve been watching me walk the path. Watching me wrangle this big box down the path. Whispering to each other, questioning WHY I have been carrying this big, unopened box. But when the box pops open, all the questioning and the whispering stops.
It’s in this moment that I begin to feel stunned. Overwhelmed. I feel like I need to sit down, to retreat. I hear Holy Spirit speak to me and tell me I can go rest in my ‘cave of solitude’ if I want to. But only for a while. I can rest until I get my joy back. I must have lost it in the intensity of the moment. But I can rest in this hidden place until my joy returns, then I will journey on. Everything – the path, Goodness and Mercy, the gift – it will all be right there for when I return from my cave. I look around, there is my cave. I hadn’t seen it before but there it is. Just off to the side of the path. I go in. And I rest.
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