Love Letters from God

I’m here. I love you. I don’t care if you need to stay up crying all night long, I will stay with you. If you need the medication again, go ahead and take it—I will love you through that, as well. If you don’t need the medication, I will love you, too. There’s nothing you can ever do to lose my love. I will protect you until you die, and after your death I will still protect you. I am stronger than Depression and I am braver than Loneliness and nothing will ever exhaust me.
Elizabeth Gilbert, Eat, Pray, Love

When Elizabeth Gilbert heard God speak to her, she felt so known and loved that she began to listen for that voice every day. 

“Imagine what God, a loving person, or your future self might say to you,” Tara said to listeners of The Radical Compassion Challenge. “Write it down in a letter and ask a trusted friend to read it back to you, twice.” 

This is what I wrote on the heels of last week’s post. 

Dear Esther,

I see you. I see your desires, your struggles, your victories, and your disappointments. I see your anxiety, confusion, and fear. I see your openness to love and your desire to be open. I see your beauty, your heart. I see all that others love about you, and I get it. I know why people want to be with you and have you as a friend, mother, spiritual director, wife. And I see that you don’t see it.

I can see who you would be if you believed there was nothing wrong with you. And I am giving you my eyes to see that.

Forgive yourself for not being who you think you should be. Come home to who you are. I am right here. It’s okay that you don’t understand, that you can’t do what others do, that you don’t know what they know. Not being them means that you are being you. When you do that you come home. You are home. I’m right here.

–God

Tears came as I wrote these words that spoke of my fears and longings. Brené  Brown says our deepest need is to be known, and I felt known by the One who matters most to me.

I believed these were God’s words, but some doubt remained until I listened to a trusted friend read this letter back to me twice. “It’s true,” she said, then she got specific and provided proof. 

In a podcast about Teresa of Avila, James Finley said “. . . what happens to one of us in
the order of grace belongs to all of us in the mystical body.” I take that to mean that what was given to Elizabeth Gilbert and what was given to me was also given to you. God feels the same way about you. God knows you, sees you, is with you, and will never leave you.

I wonder what words God would use to express that to you? What are you longing to hear from God? I’m sure God would be delighted to write a love letter to you.

As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Now remain in my love.
–John 15:9

∗ ∗ ∗

Love Mischief for the World

I have rarely hear a sermon on Acts 8:26-40 (Philip and the Ethiopian Eunuch), let alone one that is so lifegiving and inspiring. I am grateful to Eric Mason of St. Laurence Anglican Church in Coquitlam for delving into the background of this text and listening to how it relates directly with the people in his church and in our lives. Love mischief, indeed.

What love mischief are you and God doing for the world?
Let me know and I will include it in an upcoming post.

Credits and References:
Girl Reading a Letter by an Open Window  by Jan (Johannes) Vermeer (1659) by cea +. Used with permission.
Note about Elizabeth Gilbert from an interview with Tara Brach during the Radical Compassion Challenge.
The Love Letter (Chie Yoshii) photo by June Yarham. Used with permission.
© Esther Hizsa, An Everyday Pilgrim, 2021.
Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without permission from Esther Hizsa is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used provided there is a link to the original content and credit is given as follows: © Esther Hizsa, An Everyday Pilgrim 2013-2021.  http://www.estherhizsa.com

About Esther Hizsa

Esther is a spiritual director and writer. She lives in Burnaby with her husband, Fred, and they have two grown children and two grandchildren.
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