Friday, May 16, 2014

When I Think of Egypt: May My Heart Not Turn Back

"Our father's refused to obey Him, and in their hearts they turned back to Egypt." Acts 7:39

My heart is like the Israelites. When things get difficult, or a new battle begins, or I sin and forget to call on Jesus my heart thinks "If only…"

If only I were somewhere else, if only my body were different. If only Jesus would call me away from here. If only I could start over. My mind knows what it is to be a daughter, but my heart remembers being a slave.

A slave to my emotions, a slave to bitterness, a slave to the numbing
of television and isolation.

My heart remembers the taskmaster of emotional dependence
and tears and pleas and begging
for someone to take me away from here.

My heart remembers the seducing voice
of a prince promising me his kingdom
if only I would bow down.

And my fear said
"Better a slave in an enemy's house,
than a daughter in a King's house,
I don't deserve to be loved."

When I think of Egypt
I think of dorm rooms
and desperate text messages
and the resistant "peace" of knowing I was in control.

When I think of Egypt,
I think of people being Moses
and calling me out
while I mocked them
and fell apart.

My Egypt smelled like hair dye and junk food
trying to cover the dying little girl inside
and felt like West Texas wind
blowing me to dust
because I had nothing worth living for.

My Egypt still feels more real
than the Promised Land
I am so close too.
Because I have seen the pillar of fire
and find Holy Spirit

My Promised Land journey looks like
Running from the Pharaoh of self-destruction and lies
while they scream at me to come back, weapons at the ready.

And as the sea parts
I see a cloud of witnesses cheering me on
I see a place of my own
and a family
proud to call me their own.
I see women cheering me on
and authority over a pharaoh I never dreamed I would have.
I see a land for my glorious possession
And I think
"Please just take my heart
and keep me.
Don't let me turn back.

And when the desert
makes me feel like I am headed nowhere
I see the Pillar of Fire saying
"Come this way, I've got you,
I know your heart, I love you."
I promise
And that is the Promise
I will wait 40 years for.