There is something about this church with its darkened windows and weathered wood, abandoned, yet still standing.
It speaks of faith. Faith tested by trials and difficult moments and challenging circumstances. Faith that withstands whatever happens. Faith to parent on the hard days. Faith to create in the face of doubt and fear.
There is a striking beauty here.
A symbol of hope and strength.
A reminder that I am stronger than I think.
An invitation to create and experience the divine.
When I drive by this abandoned church, I see courage in the face of things I fear may tear me down. But God reminds me He is my refuge and my strength. He stands, tested and shown to be a refuge, a stronghold, a foundation not shaken.
One of the incredible things about God is how He reveals Himself. He shows up in abandoned buildings, in the laughter of my girls, in a message from a friend, or in a hawk in the sky. He shows up and offers me a glimpse of the sacred. He shows up.
When I stand at the place between doubt and hope, between faith and fear, I choose faith. I choose to believe, like this church on the side of the road, that God is there. His love remains. I choose to trust Him even when I don’t think I can.
Unlike this abandoned building, I choose to embody the living sacrifice God created me to be and I choose to throw open the doors to my heart and allow Him complete access to all of me: my worries, my doubts, my darkness, my secret places where I want to worry rather than believe and trust.
The mystery of faith is something we must experience in our hearts and in our soul, especially when we feel like a worn, weathered, abandoned church on the side of the road. Faith cannot be explained and we cannot be convinced of it.
Rather, we must experience faith in the beautiful brokenness in our life and our world.
Rather, we must experience faith’s promise in the dark silences that threaten to steal our next breath. For there, in our darkness, it offers us a glimpse of the divine, a glimpse of Truth. In the dark silence, faith invites us to experience the sacred.
For we are not abandoned.
Even in those moments when we see ourselves as less than, we are always fearfully and wonderfully designed in the image of a loving Creator. We are goodness and love and hope.
By faith, we are redeemed, made new.
By faith, we are so much more than we think we are.
We are beauty. We are creativity. We are faith. We are hope. We are strong. We are so much more than what we can see.
And through us, the world can glimpse the divine.