A few days ago Stormi, our kitten, was romping around our room: exploring under the bed, messing with a pile of clean laundry, climbing the chair and then leaping onto the empty hamper that was open. Before she knew it... she found herself in the bottom of the hamper... stuck!
Do you ever feel like this picture of Stormi? I do. Perhaps the walls feel like they are closing in, and you feel trapped. Walls that reflect the demands of a schedule, the emotional pressure in our country/community of judgment, anger, and fear, or, maybe, a personal, emotional, physical, or financial crisis?
What stirs that kind of emotion for you - that feeling of stuckness? I do not think Stormi could have escaped on her own. But I did not wait too long. I scooped her up and set her free.
I have had days, weeks, and even seasons in my life where I felt stuck by circumstances, the things surrounding me, and sometimes even the emotions or brokenness of my own heart. But the disciple of Jesus has access to freedom, even when the circumstances do not change. Galatians 5:1 says, "It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery."
Sometimes God physically rescues us from our challenges, from emotional struggle, and from hardship. But sometimes he gives peace in the trial... releasing our hearts from their attachments to idols and sin patterns, from the deception of the enemy, and anything other than Himself.
Our kitten looked right at me when I went to release her - so focused and attentive. I want to have that kind of focus and attention toward the heart of God when that sense of "stuckness" stirs whether it is prompted by a world that seems caught in chaos or emerging from the stirrings of my own heart. Curt Thompson reminds us in Anatomy of the Soul, "We become what we pay attention to." I do not want to give my focused attention to the walls that feel like they surround me, but rather I will pay attention to the One who sets me free.