Talia Biel is a member at Crossroads Church. She is a sincere Jesus follower with a gift for connecting her faith to real life, and for sharing that through her writing. Check out her blog “Holding On To Faith.
NOTE: Talia is participating in our “Summer In The Psalms” bible reading initiative. This story shows how God speaks through scripture in amazing ways, not only to us but also through us!
Hope is the thing with feathers
That perches in the soul
And sings the tune without the words
And never stops—at all” – Emily Dickenson
A friend had called me out of the blue to meet up for coffee early this morning. At first, I so quickly wanted to turn down the invitation. I haven’t been feeling well the last couple days (kids are germ machines) and could barely think straight enough, if yet, long enough to maintain a full on conversation. It was then I felt the spirit nudging me reminding me gently of the day to day opportunities to truly be His hands and feet, and I got this feeling that I needed to be there for someone, regardless of how crappy I myself felt.
I dragged myself into the shower, tried not to look in the mirror, and threw on any dress that I could find on the floor in my closest. I felt awful, but couldn’t shake this feeling that I had to meet up with this person (let’s say) Julia* for a name.
Julia herself was not feeling well, so saying “you might get sick” was irrelevant. In my fog, I wrote a note to my husband who is off doing a photo shoot, and I made myself get out of the house and head to the nearby Tim Horton’s in Courtice. (Thank God for sunglasses, they make you look less sick).
My spirit felt strong, but my body felt weak. Before I walked through the doors, I kept wrestling with the thoughts of “what am I supposed to say, how can You possibly use me today when I feel like I want to go crawl back into my bed and binge watch Netflix?”
As I entered, I smiled at Julia and she hugged me tight. (Sometimes, I think people forget I’m just a little person) she quickly sat me down and says, “Talia I read your praise report last night, that’s so amazing”. I nodded in agreement, as she gave me my favourite vanilla iced coffee. I shifted uncomfortably in my chair, because I realized the focus is now on me. (Hence why I turned down solo parts from my music teacher year after year for theatre) I Talia do not like shifting focus onto me.
She then looked at me her smile turning serious. “That’s not what I want to talk to you about though.”
Yay, I thought to myself. Let’s talk about you! That’s what were here for right?
“I want to talk to you about Psalm 13?, she suddenly says. I took a sip of my iced coffee, feeling a little perplexed. Psalm 13. I knew it well enough now for I have been mediating and reading it over and over this past week. I understood the depths of it, the meaning behind the emotions, the act of being released into hope.
“What about Psalm 13?”
She lowered her eyes to the floor, looking embarrassed. “It wasn’t until your praise report, which then God really spoke to me about reading the Psalms. I had not wanted to, but I had to see what Psalm 13 was all about, and why you had referenced it.”
So last night, I read it, and I read it, and I read it.
“And Talia, that Psalm is exactly how I feel right now”.
I woke up in the middle of the night last night questioning God completely, if He is even real or not because honestly right now through my struggles, I don’t even want to praise Him. Right now I don’t see the good He has done in my life, but right now I know that it doesn’t end there, there comes hope.”
The one word I’ve wanted to get tattooed on my wrist for quite a long time now. A word that shines bright like a lighthouse shining in the darkness, showing the sailor the way back home.
Hope – stronger than fear.
Psalm 13 is about hope, desperation and struggle.
I listened for quite some time, as she continued to share her heart. I then quickly realized in that moment, how thankful I am for the spirit’s gentle nudge on not dismissing this opportunity. And as I got up to leave as we are finished, I myself felt blessed. My spirit strong and my body weak, that He would still use me as such a time as this. A time where I too would wake up with many nights questioning is this for real or not? A time where I too saw the desperation for Jesus through my struggles. Were I held onto hope as tight as I could.
A time where I too, didn’t feel like praising God in the midst of heartache.
But I trusted, and I continue to trust in His unfailing love. And I trust that Julia herself will go through the struggle and the heartache, and see that God was with her the entire time. Like a sailor needing the light in the lighthouse to guide her home, He will always guide us back home.
How long, Lord? Will you forget me forever?
How long will you hide your face from me?
2 How long must I wrestle with my thoughts
and day after day have sorrow in my heart?
How long will my enemy triumph over me?
3 Look on me and answer, Lord my God.
Give light to my eyes, or I will sleep in death,
4 and my enemy will say, “I have overcome him,”
and my foes will rejoice when I fall.
5 But I trust in your unfailing love;
my heart rejoices in your salvation.
6 I will sing the Lord’s praise,
for he has been good to me.