Overwhelmed by Beauty

028Just a couple  days ago I was sitting on a plane returning from Israel. A huge chunk of my heart lives in Israel so returning to the States is often difficult. I’ve sometimes joked that I spend the entire plane ride back crying. Of course that is an exaggeration, but lets just say that usually more than a few tears are shed.

This time was no exception. More than a few tears were shed on the ride home. But what was different this time is why those tears were shed. This time I wasn’t crying because I was sad to be leaving, this time I was crying for another reason entirely …

Sunrise over the GalileeI was crying because he’s beautiful.

And his beauty overwhelms me. Undoes me. Changes me.

This time something else was different too–my perspective. This time I knew I wasn’t leaving anything behind …

I was taking more of him with me.

I honestly don’t know what switch he flipped in my heart. In many ways this trip should have been difficult. I was sick (really sick) nearly the whole time. Lots of “big” words and prophesies we’d received about this trip didn’t seem to materialize. We didn’t connect with many of the people we’d hoped to connect with and we didn’t get to do some of things we’d hoped to do.

But it didn’t matter.

We connected with him.

And he’s all that matters — his life — his love — his desire — his peace –his presence …

His beauty.

Oh, and his joy. For pretty much the entire trip, we were FILLED with joy — inexplicable, overflowing, unstoppable and uncontainable — joy.

In his presence is fullness of joy.

So we pretty much decided not to leave his presence (it is a choice, you know). It’s better there–way better. You can breathe there. You can see more clearly there.

Things are beautiful there.

And his beauty overwhelms me. Undoes me. Changes me.

Almost exactly five years ago, I returned from a trip to Israel and entered into one of the most challenging periods of transition I have ever endured. All throughout my time in Israel in 2008 the Lord was speaking Psalm 126:5-6 to me:

Those who sow with tears
will reap with songs of joy.
Those who go out weeping,
carrying seed to sow,
will return with songs of joy,
carrying sheaves with them.

I didn’t fully understand all the implications at the time. But I did know this–while I was currently sowing in tears, he was promising I would return … rejoicing.

I did.

Although I had returned to Israel two previous times in the ensuing years, I knew this was the trip he had spoken to me about five years ago. This was the time I was to return rejoicing — with songs of joy — with sheaves for the harvest.

Because  the harvest is plentiful.

Do I have anything particularly tangible to show for this plentiful harvest? Not really–at least not yet. Right now, I’m seeing it all with eyes of faith. But I am seeing it …  more clearly than I ever have.

I’m also seeing something else more clearly than I ever have …

His beauty.

And his beauty overwhelms me. Undoes me. Changes me.

His beauty does something else too. It makes me weep …

With tears of great joy.


10 thoughts on “Overwhelmed by Beauty

  1. wow! I’m excited that you experienced His Joy – The Fullness of Joy and The Lord is Fulfilling Psalm 126 Those who go out weeping will return with Songs of Joy – Blessings to you my friend. Continue to know his presence and be overwhelmed by his beauty as you journey on.

    1. Thanks Joy. Sorry we had to cut our conversation short on the last night. You know how the sherut drivers are–when they are ready to go, they are ready to go! The ride to the airport was quite wild (I’ll have to tell you about it). And thank you for that word about the “unfolding scroll” – exactly what the Lord had spoken to me, so it was a very encouraging bit of confirmation! Love and hugs!

  2. Wow! Sounds like you accomplished the Father’s agenda in perfect detail. 🙂 Sorry about the physical sickness, but very glad for you about the results.

    I have found that the prophetic words sometimes get fulfilled in ways we didn’t expect, but we see the intent in hindsight.

    I never lived in Israel but every time we go there it does something to my heart too. Thanks for sharing your journey with us.

    1. Thanks Mel. I so agree with the comment about prophetic words–I think half the fun is watching them unfold in His way and in His timing (which of course is often quite different from how we might originally interpret them). Quite excited to see how the things Jesus imparted will unfold this time around. Many blessings to you!

      1. Yes. I realized recently that God was fulfilling a word now that I was given in 1989. I also realized that I didn’t have a clue about what He meant when I got the word. It is an adventure! 🙂

  3. So glad we can rejoice in His presence wherever we are…but I am especially looking forward to my first time trip to the promised land coming up next Feb.

    Cindy, I believe reading your posts about Israel gave me a deeper desire to go there. Thanks so much for sharing your joy with us.

    I needed to read this today. You touched something deep that needed a reminder that I need to weep over the joy of His presence. I’m thanking him for the tears and for you.

    1. I’m so excited for you about your upcoming trip,Glenda! It is particularly meaningful for me that what I’ve written has stirred your desire to be there–praying for the trip of a lifetime! And I’m also glad this post touched your heart. It really is so simple, isn’t it? (When we remember!) True joy–lasting joy–really is only found in His presence.

      Much love and joy to you on the journey! ❤

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