You're Not on a Shelf


"Yet day by day the Lord also pours out his steadfast love upon me, and through the night I sing his songs and pray to God who gives me life." Psalm 42:8. (Living Bible translation)

I've learned that long nights, without distractions or interruptions, can be scalding deserts of pain or soothing oases of comfort and inspiration. I've experienced both. And often.

One dark night I fashioned a poem which revealed my angst and impatience with being partially (and I hope temporarily) disabled.        

                          SHELF LIFE

I've done it again, Lord, will I ever learn
That trusting should still be my greatest concern?
I chafe on this shelf, Lord, I want so to be
Used to bless others like You have blessed me.
I long to reach out, Lord, please help me I pray
To find ways to serve You, and not waste away.
So many are hurting, so many need love.
So many need You to reach down from above.
I chafe on this shelf, Lord, release me I pray.
I can't serve You here; I am too far away

My child, now please listen, you're not on a shelf;
Nothing has changed and you're not by yourself. 
I love you in spite of mistakes that you've made
Your sins have been covered, the price has been paid.
I know of your pain and I know of your fears
For I am your Father; now dry all those tears.
And start praising Jesus, and then I will bring
Such joy to your heart that you're rise up and sing.
I'll bring in your life those I want you to bless
And trust me, my child, I will do all the rest.
You're not on a shelf, you're right where you should be;
I want you to rest, not to fret, just trust me.
My plans are not clear to you yet, but please know
You're safe in My hands and I won't let you go.

Immediately after I wrote that poem, God began to open doors of service for me; incredible, unimaginable doors of opportunity to reach out, to forget my own disability and embrace those who were far worse off physically than I.

I marvel that we, with all our flaws, physical weaknesses, insecurities, limited resources and all, can present ourselves to our loving heavenly Father and He will gently pour into all the cracks of our broken vessels the healing virtue of Jesus' precious blood to make this the most productive time of our entire lives.

Mariane Holbrook mariane777@bellsouth.net

Mariane Holbrook is a retired teacher, an author of two books, a musician and artist.

She lives with her husband on coastal North Carolina.  She maintains a personal website www.marianholbrook.com.

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