Part Four: Read Part 1,Part 2, Part 3 first.

How does it feel, lying there in your own blood, kicking and struggling, hearing God simply say, “Live!” Does it seem inviting? Impossible? Does it even sound fair?

If it doesn’t, then you haven’t heard it in your heart yet, where it matters. You see, when God speaks to the heart, this God, our God, the One True God, things happen. Worlds explode into being. Limbs are restored. Hearts are healed. Memories are soothed. Life happens. “With our hearts we believe, and are saved” (Romans 10:9). Or we doubt with our hearts, and are stuck. Naturally. But watch what comes next:

“I made you thrive like a plant in the field.”

There’s that word again. Thrive. Would you use that word to describe yourself? “I’m thriving.”

And look where the thriving is happening— “In the field.” Not just a field. The field. In the very place where you were abandoned. In the place where the blood stains dried on the itchy grass. Perhaps the stains are still there. With you. In the field.

In other words, he didn’t take you out of the field. He made you thrive in it.

Sometimes we want God to change our circumstances, make our lives more bearable, make things, well, easier for us.

He usually doesn’t.

But I’ll never truly thrive until she gets her act together, until they treat me properly, until this changes around me.

Wrong. You will never truly thrive until you hear his word spoken to you in your blood, in the field where you have been placed.

But I hate this field. It’s not fair. I didn’t choose this.

That may be, but this is your field. Your field to grow in, to push roots down in, to stretch up into, to thrive in. And because he said it, you can do it—if you truly hear him in your heart.

Jesus said in John 7:38, “Whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said, ‘Streams of living water will flow from within him.” From within.

Again, a tame way of putting it.

The word ‘within’ here is also translated ‘womb’ and cascades from a root that simply means, ‘empty.’ Can you see it? The water, the life, the word, flowing from the empty places?

The empty ones?

Yes. And not just to them. From them.

You have been trying to hear God in church, to connect with heaven in the shiny places of your life. In the together places. You are trying to move on, forgetting that some very important things happened to you that need attention. Remember, it is God who brought up the field incident just now. It was his idea to talk about your past, to talk about the trauma in your life.

And he wants to speak to you in your blood, in the pain, in the mess, the stench, the darkness. That’s where his light will shine brightest. Until you hear him there, none of the rest of what I am going to share is going to hit home and make much of a difference in your life. Your story will park here for awhile, instead of moving on to the climax. You need to hear him in your blood.

So what do you think? Can you see that it’s time to sit back and let him take you back into the moments that defined you? He’ll want you to remember, even re-live the times when the flies came in and planted lies that have grown & festered in your soul. Let Him take you back. Remember the past so he can speak into it. Into the blood.

But why?

So your past can be truly laid to rest under a mound of tacky begonias and not just swept under the carpet or kept at bay. So that your history doesn’t keep repeating itself, so the lies don’t keep replaying in your mind. So that you can thrive like you were meant to.

You are probably remembering something, even now. A memory. A painful or confusing time. A regret. That’s not a coincidence. It’s Jesus saying, “Remember when….?”

At this point you may need to pause and spend some time with him. Let yourself remember. Let yourself feel. Let him “guide you into all truth” (John 16:13). Into your pain.

Ask him what the flies planted there. What lies did you believe about yourself in those tender moments, when life was raw enough for you to be exposed and defenseless?

When he puts his finger on the lies, you’ll know it.

How?

Well, for one thing, they’ll hurt. And when you’re in the middle of the hurt those lies cause, don’t shrink back. Don’t push the pain away. Don’t unplug, don’t shut it down. Let your pain rise up, out into the open, into the light. God is waiting for you to let it all surface so he can speak to you in your blood.

The next part is important.

When you have your finger on the lie, ask him a question.

A question? What question?

Ask him, “Lord, what do you want me to know about this?” Then listen. I mean, really listen.

Simple.

But potentially life-changing.

NEXT: Naked