Dear Readers of the DS Devotional blog
Thank you for your faithful prayers over the years. It is such a privilege to be able to share our heart with you for life, healing, and freedom. We wanted to ask if you would join us in prayer for a special event tomorrow evening. Thursday, March 5, we will be having our annual fundraising banquet for the national Deeper Still Ministry, which now has expanded to eighteen chapters in the United States and two chapters internationally.
Our theme this year is “This Garden’s Gonna Grow”, based on the Jason Upton’s song. One of our chapter leaders, Paula Jacobson-Mol, wrote the following post below and it goes along perfectly with our theme this year. This post is a perfect example of how the Lord has been planting and growing the ministry of Deeper Still. Thank you for partnering with us in prayer as we believe the Lord for all the resources needed for this “garden” to grow and flourish. He is a good Gardener.
Thank you Paula for our contribution today!
Thank you Heavenly Father for all the ways you nurture and grow Your people, Your ministries, Your Kingdom. Father, thank you for being a good Gardener. We ask that Your will would be done for every provision needed for growing Your garden. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
Since I can remember I’ve always had a garden and 15 years ago I found myself working more garden space than I’ve ever had, spending sometimes upward of 60 hours per week, keeping my yard and gardens rather immaculate. I loved this work and I loved having a beautiful yard and gardens– I was in my glory, so to speak.
I’ve also enjoyed physical fitness, running being a part of it. I would put carrots in front of my nose to help me accomplish new goals, so CrossFit, and races became part of my normal regimen. I ran a marathon in the Fall of 2012 and had a deep sense throughout the race that it had spiritual meaning, more than I could see at the time. I prayed through much of the race for everyone and anything that came to mind and I pictured Jesus at the tops of all the hills I needed to climb, including the finish line. Talking to God the whole way through is truly what got me through.
His ways are higher than our ways… eight years ago (January of 2012) God started doing a deeper work in my heart, prompting me to do something “pro-active” with the abortion that loomed in the depths of my heart from my past. As I sought Him further, He led me to a Deeper Still Retreat in the Spring of 2012. I came home from my retreat forever changed, having met God face to face (as humanly possible as that is) and in a way like never before.
As much as I felt light on my feet from my newly found freedom, I felt a heaviness of heart for the many men and women with abortion wounded hearts that needed healing. There was much need for a Deeper Still in West Michigan. I felt strongly that God was prompting me to pursue that, but I had no idea how or what that might look like and I certainly didn’t know how that would impact the other areas of my life. However, I did know God had me in the very grip of His Mighty Hand. Through the next 6 years, I continued praying, waiting on, abiding with the Lord as I went to Deeper Still trainings and serving on retreat teams as much as I was called. As each year past, I was doing less gardening and a little less running. Then last year God formed and brought the first Deeper Still West Michigan retreat into being. There is still no garden planted in the natural as of yet and no Spring races on the docket.
As I’ve pondered, I have come to realize that God certainly has me working in a different soil. I’m working the soil in His Garden, not my own. He has been pruning and training me to go in a different direction and to help other plants struggling to survive with their abortion wounded hearts. Rather than me pruning my plants, trellising them to grow in the way I want them to go, God has been and continues to prune me, training me to follow Him on a trellis in His Garden and where HE wants me to grow.
So, this past weekend a culmination of my years of running came to mind as I sat with my Lord, I felt Him say in my spirit, “not only do I have you working in different soil, but you are now running a different race. The races you’ve been running you’ve received medals, but for this race, you will receive a crown.”
The Lord’s garden is the best place to be and letting Him do His perfect work for His glory…right where I want to be.
All for His Glory,
If you’d like to contribute to this growing garden and life-giving, life-changing ministry, you can go to www.GoDeeperStill.org to give a tax-deductible donation. Thank you for all your support!