11102015_BonnieGray_Psalm46

“Poetry and prayer are closest kin. In poetry, we say it; in prayer, we become what we say.” {Eugene Peterson}

I woke up to the sound of soft rain, for the first time this autumn.

So I put on my shoes, took my raincoat and umbrella, and walked across a wooden bridge and some freshly fallen wet leaves. It was so quiet and peaceful, I whispered, “Thank you, God.”

I was thanking God for the rain. Yet, He sees deeper. He’s been listening to all my unspoken whispers — in the places my soul has been dry, needing to be filled.

And I felt God whisper in return: You don’t have to wonder . . . I will make all things new again. I make all things new in you.

“Then I will send rain on your land in its season, both autumn and spring rains, so that you may gather in your grain, new wine and olive oil.” {Deuteronomy 11:14}

Think of everything that is beautiful. Then, remember, everything beautiful will be made new in you. With God. Together.

There is new grain. New wine. New oil. For you. In you.

Do you hear the soft and gentle voice of God inviting you to let go — and draw closer to him — in the quiet moments of autumn?

To let go of what is and has been — so He can bring new grain, new wine, and new oil to reignite your heart again.

Do you hear Him whispering to you today . . .

“Be still and know that I am God.” {Psalm 46:10}

Assure Your Heart

Whatever you’re doing, take a break. Stop and breathe. Look at the leaves turning sunrise-crimson on the tree or floating down to lay still like dew along blades of grass.

Listen to God whisper in the Psalms . . . Be still. I love you.

Assure your heart. You are beloved. God’s beloved. Nothing else matters. You are His poetry. All is well.

“For you are God’s work of art, created in Christ Jesus.” {Ephesians 2:10}

The Beautiful Seed

Sometimes, the world can be such a noisy place — always calling for us to be more, do more — to be stronger, to move faster — to hurt less and to always know the answers.

Yet, the leaves of autumn tell us a secret. The hush of rain tip-tapping onto the ground reminds us God hasn’t forgotten the beautiful dream He’s planted deep in you. 

Your story and your heart. The beautiful seed can never be destroyed.

It’s Jesus in you. Your whole heart. Nothing more. And nothing less.

God sees it all and says . . .

“I have called you by name. You are mine.” {Isaiah 43:1}

Jesus Hears

Don’t be afraid.

God isn’t deterred by the noise that surrounds us. God whispers: I will make you new.

Nothing compares. No worries or cares. Regrets and mistakes.

The hopes, dreams and memories that shape us — all of it is known, cherished, and made new — wrapped in God’s loving embrace.

Just like the seasons changing, we may feel ready and confident. And yet, in the next moment, something within us shifts. And we feel insecure and doubtful.

It’s okay. Like the soft, gentle flutters of a butterfly’s wings fluttering to break from its cocoon, Jesus hears our unspoken heart prayers.

A Living Prayer

Jesus continues to assure us: I make all things new in you.

“See, I am making all things new . . . These words are faithful and true.” {Revelations 21:5}

Be the beloved in this season of letting go.

Let the whispers of thanksgiving will no longer be the words you say, but a prayer that you’ll live.

Be the story of Jesus coming alive in you today. As is.

Question for you: How is God calling your heart to let go — and how is He making you new?

by Bonnie Gray, the FaithBarista.com, serving up shots of faith for everyday life.
For more soulful encouragement, enjoy Bonnie’s book Finding Spiritual Whitespace: Awakening Your Soul to Rest.

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  • Anna Smit

    Oh Bonnie, it’s lovely to read your words again. You are such an encouragement. I’m reading this just before heading out for my run, with kids at preschool and school, so it is a good reminder to savour the stillness of the forest and the beauty in it.

    How is God calling my heart to let go?

    I just wrote a post on “Loving Him is Loving Yourself: His Creation”, being stirred by Scriptures, a sermon at church and a book I’m reading (Healing for Damaged Emotions) to recognize how I need to allow my circumstances (however hard they are) to drive me into His Arms, so that I can receive the love He is holding out to me. He is encouraging me to let go of my experience-based identity (rooted in proving my worth to avoid rejection) to let it be replaced by an identity rooted in Christ, in LOVE.

    Before coming back to Christ, I believed being a Christian was striving to do “good works” to be loved. God is opening my eyes to see that I can only do the works He has prepared for me and only love others around me by ACCEPTING His Love and Grace: not just seeing it as something for others and that I am unworthy. The first commandment calls us to love God with all that we are. How can I do this if I do not praise Him for His creation: which also includes me? And the second commandment calls us to love others as ourselves: how can I love them well, if I loathe and berate /belittle myself? Essentially it is false humility: negating the sacrifice of the Cross, which tells me I am a daughter of the most High King, His Beloved (as you so beautifully capture here).

    And we can only receive His love if we bring all of ourselves to Him: just as King David and Jesus did, we must direct our deepest emotions to Him and allow Him to pour His Love over it: just as you have repeatedly reflected to me in your blogs (and book!). He’s calling me to come to Him with knees shaking, heart aching, tears streaming, anger raging (in whatever emotion I find myself in) and just like King David and Jesus allow Him to shield, soothe, comfort and release me from the hold of my circumstances to pour in His beautiful, freeing and peace-giving love.

    Thank you for your beautiful encouragement. May God continue to take you by the hand and guide you into His Love through His gentle and beautiful Spirit.

    • Bev @ Walking Well With God

      Amen Anna! I encourage you to print out these words you’ve written so beautifully and keep them somewhere that you can pull them out when the “you’re not worthy” doubts begin to swirl. You’ve captured Love’s heart for you so wonderfully here.
      Blessings,
      Bev xx

      • Jas

        What a great suggestion Bev and Anna you have further cemented Bonnies points, its like the Lord talking straight to me. Bless you xx

        • Anna Smit

          God bless you too, Jas.

      • Anna Smit

        Thanks, Bev.

    • http://www.faithbarista.com/ Bonnie Gray

      it’s beautiful to hear your story, anna … of God drawing you closer and deeper to his heartbeat — and the real you emerging, blossoming with God’s love and whispers. love how we see God in you!

      • Anna Smit

        Thanks, Bonnie. I love seeing God’s great love in your life story too.

  • Jas

    Bonnie, thank you for your thought provoking post – so what I needed to hear.

    • http://www.faithbarista.com/ Bonnie Gray

      Jas… it’s soul beautiful to know we’re on this journey together! so touched the words speak to your heart.

  • Bev @ Walking Well With God

    Bonnie,
    I love that in this midlife, what do I do with myself now, season of my life, God is making me new yet again. Nothing quite prepares you for the empty nest season and the question that rings so loudly…Where do I find my worth now? It’s still rooted in God and like fresh rain He will water the seed he planted years ago and bring from it new and different life. My biggest challenge was waiting and being still…anticipating what He would do next through me.
    Blessings,
    Bev

    • http://www.faithbarista.com/ Bonnie Gray

      you always listen closely to God’s whispers in all the different parts of your journey, bev. you have a beautiful heart planted with Him!

    • Beth Williams

      Bev,
      AMEN Sister!! I, too, am in this midlife, what do I do with myself now, season. God will make us new again! He will plant dreams in us and give us the courage to follow Him and His path!
      Blessings :)

  • Miriam

    Bonnie, love hearing your heart it’s so sweet and refreshing! In this season of our lives we have been confronted with a major cross country move and as we wait for our home to be built ; we have faced many obstacles. But the Lord has delivered us out of them all!! God always gives us a way of escape. I have found that i am a very in patient and waiting is hard. But i know character is built in the waiting. I have had to ask for forgiveness due to my impatience and God is so merciful and loving. I just fall into his arms of love and feel i am redeemed again!

    • http://www.faithbarista.com/ Bonnie Gray

      hi miriam, i love how you put your heart into words and share it so lovingly with us. may this time of waiting be a beautiful chapter of God’s whispers to you… as you wait for your new home to be built. He’s in it with you!

  • Darlene

    Awesome thoughts and words of encouragement, thank you Bonnie. I read the passage in Deuteronomy 11, and I am wanting the new grain and new wine in my life. But the verse before this is what I need to concentrate on, before the Lord can bring the rain. ” And if you will indeed obey my commandments that I command you today, to love the Lord your God, and to serve him with all your heart and with all your soul.” Thanks again, and God bless you.

    • http://www.faithbarista.com/ Bonnie Gray

      hi darlene.. what a Word girl you are… love how you’re sharing God’s whispers with you and thanks for adding to this post with the Scriptures!

  • jandlwilson68

    What a wonderful writing! First item I read after seeing the weather for today. Rain all day! What a timely posting! My spirit so enjoyed this! Thanks for sharing!

    • http://www.faithbarista.com/ Bonnie Gray

      hi j and l wilson ;) — love how we can enjoy the autumn beauty together in this digital connection.. love your heart!

  • Laura

    On this rainy autumn morning, these words are exactly what I needed to hear. Thank you. Just thank you.

    • http://www.faithbarista.com/ Bonnie Gray

      so sweet how God sends us his love notes, Laura… through the rain and the autumn beauty. love we’re enjoying the seasons together, right where we are. time snuggle up cozy with that comfy throw.. ;)

  • Lynn D. Morrissey

    Such a lovely, quiet post, Bonnie, but resounding with powerful truth. Yes, behold, He does make all things new. Praise Him! I have always loved autumn because it is such an exquisitely beautiful season; and yet, it is tinged with coming death. But as God’s still, small voice whispers on each falling leaf, we hear echoes of spring. We know that after autumn and winter comes the spring of resurrection. It was very meaningful to me that you mentioned butterflies. They are one of my passions and always whisper to me the promise of new life and resurrection, as butterflies emerge from their chrysalises, transformed. And that you mentioned “new wine and oil” is particularly significant to me. Let me explain. This past July 15th I celebrated thirty years of sobriety. Even when I was a Christian of just one year, I knew that God wanted me to quit drinking–but I was so frightened. Before my first AA meeting, I uttered a desperate prayer for Him to give me comfort from His Word–to give me *anything* to give me courage. Bonnie, it was then that I heard God’s still, small whisper for the first time (in my head)…one word: Joel. I didn’t even know there was a Joel in the Bible!! I opened my Bible literally one time and it fell to Joel 2, and my eyes immediately were riveted on verse 19, which reads: “The Lord will answer and say to His people,
    “Behold, I am going to send you grain, new wine and oil,
    And you will be satisfied in full with them.” I was staggered. And even in my newness as a child of God, I could understand what He was telling me, in essence, “Lynn, if you will relinquish this old, alcoholic wine of which you have become so fond and obey Me and stop drinking, I will give you new wine, My wine–the wine of My Spirit–and you will be satisfied in full.” Bonnie, God *has* done something new in my heart over these years, something amazing, as I continue to listen for His voice and obey. And yet there have been wilderness seasons–even now–when all I hear are my own questions and doubts caroming around in the hollows of my heart. Your beautiful post encourages me to know that new life will spring forth again–new wine to gladden, new grain to sustain. Bless you for sharing your deep insights and beautiful gifts.
    Love
    Lynn

    • http://www.faithbarista.com/ Bonnie Gray

      Dear Lynn, what a powerful story He is living through you! Love how God’s brought you to be touched by His Spirit… and moving you through healing and sobriety. You are brave and courageous!! I thank God for all you’ve been through and… what He’s continuing to lead you through today.

      • Lynn D. Morrissey

        You are very dear, Bonnie. Thank you for your encouraging words.
        Love
        Lynn

  • Lovelle

    Bonnie,
    You write so beautifully! I needed this today. You can never be reminded enough to let go and let God… <3

    • http://www.faithbarista.com/ Bonnie Gray

      @disqus_NJljGoWBkD:disqus!! so sweet to enjoy the morning together! *hugs* … love seeing you beautiful smile and hearing your words.

      • Lovelle

        Thank you :-) it’s good to see you too!

  • Sandra Crittenden

    Thank you Sister for these words. God had been speaking to me on somethings and I really heard Him speak more clearly to my heart on what He wants me to do.

    • http://www.faithbarista.com/ Bonnie Gray

      how beautiful to hear His voice is speaking straight into where God’s walking with you, Sandra! may He keep opening those doors in whatever He’s prompting you to and reassure you of His faithfulness. He’s holding onto you, sister!

  • Missing Mickey Mouse

    So beautiful!

  • http://freedtofly.me Trudy Den Hoed

    I love this, Bonnie. It’s so great to read a post from you again. I’ve been missing them. God is calling me to let go of the negative voices and experiences that I have allowed to define me and to cling to Him as His beloved. To listen more to His whispers rather than the condemnation I whisper to my insecure self. To let go of the fear of what people might think and to be my true self in both speaking and writing.

  • JeanneTakenaka

    Bonnie, I loved your words today. Both the images you described, and the truths you instilled into my day. Letting go can be a scary thing. I’m seeing that I need to let go of the need to be busy. Sounds crazy, but busy-ness in my life has affected my health. I am going to let go of busy-ness (I’m still asking Jesus to show me how that will look) and learn to rest, or Sabbath daily. It’s hard to let go of the to-do’s, the want-to’s, and everything in between. Thanks for your words, and for your question. I’m going to be praying about this today.

  • Kristin

    Bonnie, I can’t express how much I appreciate your vulnerability and brokenness. In your honesty, I am allowed to exhale in my own questions and fears and allow my hands to uncurl and release…yet again. Thank you, dear sister.

  • Rebecca Jones

    Bonnie, what a blessing to read this today! You have done for me what I hope I am doing for others with my blog and Pinterest boards. I don’t think any of us have truly ever experienced the depths of God’s love. We have become so used to thinking in an earthly manner. His thoughts are so much higher, of us and for us. He let go of Jesus to save us. Double blessings to you for your beautiful words of encouragement.

  • Beth Williams

    Bonnie,
    I love Fall/Autumn with its colorful leaves and mountains! They show off God’s handiwork!!! God is calling me to a season of “spiritual whitespace”! I had to quit my job this year to assist in the care of my aging dad. Two weeks after I left we put him on hospice. It can be hard adjusting to not working or having a paycheck–but I know the time I have with my dad is well worth it! God will repay me for all this!
    Blessings :)

  • Lisa True Tarpley

    Thank you for this Bonnie. I needed this word today. A reminder to be still. Know that He is God. A reminder that He is making all things new in me and around me. I need not be afraid for He is with me and He is for me.

  • Ann

    This is exactly what I needed today Bonnie, thank you!
    I have missed you!

  • Joan Ray

    What a lovely reminder. God whispered to me all night. Words of hope and peace and freedom in a circumstance. Always HIS invitation to stop and be still and KNOW and be known. THANK you for this today. Perfect for my heart.

  • Nancy Morris

    “God hasn’t forgotten the beautiful dream He’s planted deep in you”. This brought tears to my eyes. Even though it isn’t time yet for some of those dreams to come to fruition, it gives me comfort to know that He planted them and that He is mindful of them. God speaks directly to me through your writing, Bonnie, because you write vulnerably from your heart in a way that connects our hearts to His- a priceless gift from God to us. I have missed your more frequent posts but trust God is cultivating a new season of changes as you face more fears and embrace the next step He has for you.

  • Mary Alice

    I can just imagine the feeling of peace you got from being on the bridge. I was having my quiet time one day in front of my window (which I absolutely hate the view due to it only being a bunch of trees). However, that day I saw the leaves move and a calmness and peace washed over me like I had never felt before and all I could say was, “Thank you.”