God is My Shade
I have been unpacking my heart from the She Speaks 14 conference, and quite honestly, this was a part that I had not intended to unpack here. Until today. In reading Psalms this morning I tweeted verses about God being my hiding place and being close. (Psalm 32:7 & Psalm 34:18) I made this picture and sent it to a friend and said, “Wow, that’s a promise!” to which she replied back, “Yes, and true to the end…. not some but ALL.”
And then I see a tweet that reminds me to unwrap a scroll that was tenderly wrapped just for me. Just the thought of that paper delicately rolled in twine overwhelms my heart with love.
The week before She Speaks, I wanted to run. Those seven days were filled with anxiety, insomnia, and panic. This sentence ran marathons through my mind the entire week – “WHAT AM I THINKING?” I wanted to go, and was excited to go until it came right down to going and then I was afraid. Thankfully, I remembered Jonah.
I remembered reading about Jonah just a few weeks before. My last post before She Speaks was “God Comforts.” I read this verse in Jonah and it jumped off of the page and rocked my world.
Then the LORD God provided a leafy plant and made it grow up over Jonah to give shade for his head to ease his discomfort, and Jonah was very happy about the plant. Jonah 4:6
This verse stirred this fresh hope in my soul: God doesn’t make us comfortable, but he does ease our discomfort.
We visited Duke Gardens and my son helped me capture this reminder:
It made me think about all the leafy plants God provided to me for shade in my life. It made reflect on all of the ways He was with me. God knew Jonah was uncomfortable. He was right there. He was aware, and He used this simple plant to provide joy for Jonah in his discomfort. Jonah was very happy about the plant and it helped him to endure.
On the night before She Speaks, I was trying to get everything ready. After staring at a blank screen for way too long, I finally decided to break away with my husband and go eat dinner together. As we got out of the car, my heart was filled with peace at the sight of this puffy love in the sky.
These clouds reminded me that He has perfect knowledge and can be trusted. After taking a break for dinner, I was able to go home, finish everything and pack. I was ready and I was excited. I was headed to She Speaks!
As I walked into that big room on the first morning, I took a deep breath. The beauty and the detail on each table alone was incredible. The bird-cage, reminding me that I am free. The candles, reminding me to let my light shine. The empty beautiful bottles, reminding me to be filled with Him. The gorgeous flowers, reminding me to bloom where he plants me. The new friends and faces around me, reminding me that I am not alone.
And then this scroll, for me. It was wrapped with love, and randomly placed into my hands. For such a time as this. This scroll, reminding me again that He is my comfort. He is my King Jesus. I am His princess. He is my shade.
Can you see the ways God has provided leafy plants for you? Have you experienced His shade in your discomfort and pain? Maybe God is telling you to go to Nineveh, too? Go, and trust Him. He will be there with you, always. He will be there to ease your discomfort. He will be your shade.
Thank you for sharing your fears, Michelle, and how God showed Himself to be faithful and true to His promises. So encouraging! Hugs!
Thank you Trudy – I am so thankful this encouraged you! <3 Michelle
Thank you for sharing the story behind the scroll. You will never know what it means for me to hear your story. The Proverbs 31 Board and I gathered Scriptures for weeks, and when we had them all, I prayed over each and every one and prayed over your names…each and every one…believing God that each woman would receive His Word for her. How I wish I could hear every story to see God’s hand at work. This is a true gift. Thank you!!!
Thank you for your vision, your prayers, and your dedication to serve Him. I am thankful for each hand that rolled and tied each scroll. The Bible verse that I read that morning ushered an amazing peace into my soul for that weekend. I immediately read mine, and when I did I thought my heart would burst with joy! I asked my neighbor what verse she had (just to make sure we didn’t all have the same verse) and then I just smiled…. big. Of all the verses in the Bible, mine had the word shade! Only God! Thank you for your faithfulness. <3 Michelle
Your blog posts are so incredible! I can’t wait to see how your gifts will impact the masses. This is a great post! I never have thought of the leaf as protection but now have a whole new perspective-thank you!! 🙂
Angela, thank you so much! I miss you!