The Jar in the Suitcase

the jar

This is a continuation from my last post, Unlocking the Past. If you’re going through this too, please know I’m praying for you.

I pulled that heavy and musty suitcase (the one I was trying to bury that held all those things from my past) from the back of my spiritual closet and laid it on its side. I prayed to God, asking Him to unlock it for me, and begged Him to stay with me as I slumped on the floor.

The Holy Spirit strengthened me as we opened it together.

I braced myself, expecting to see a lot of painful things, ugly reminders of how I let so many people down.

But do you know what I saw?

A jar.

I sat there for a moment while the Holy Spirit reminded me:

Years ago, I’d gotten in over my head and God told me to step down from some things. But I WAITED to obey Him, not wanting to disappoint a number of people. I found myself crying out to Him so many times as I was lying in bed at night, just sobbing and trying not to wake my husband. I begged God to rescue me, knowing I was in serious trouble.

I knew I had disobeyed God, and it was crushing me. I’d never felt so overwhelmed, so defeated, and so alone in all my life.

And I failed. (Of course I did, I was disobeying God!) And yes, I failed a lot of people who were counting on me. But the worst part: I failed God.

But God didn’t help me to unlock my suitcase, so I could sit there on the floor and beat myself up again. I’d asked for forgiveness years ago, and I know God is faithful to forgive me when I ask. (If you’re still beating yourself up, this is for you too!)

So let’s go back to the jar I found in the suitcase…

The Holy Spirit reminded me of Elijah and the widow of Zarephath (1 Kings 17: 7-16). Her jar of flour was not used up during the drought. She didn’t die like she thought. She and her son survived.

God provided what she needed in that jar.

This glass jar I found in my suitcase, God’s provision for me, is FULL of His mercies and His never ending love; it never runs low or runs out. His mercy helped me to survive a terribly difficult time in my life, and His love rescued me.

And the jar is still full today, helping me to heal and move on.

My dear friend, if God has led you to pull out the suitcase from your past, and you’re opening it with Him, get a hold of that jar. (You’ve got one, too.)

God’s mercy and His love are for all of us. He will be with you right there on the floor, His Holy Spirit comforting you and speaking truth to you about your situation (leading you to ask for forgiveness if you haven’t already) and holding you close to remind you that YOU ARE FORGIVEN and YOU ARE LOVED.

Now, I don’t know about you, but I’m going to put my jar in a place where I can see it every day to remember my Heavenly Father’s love NEVER ends, and He is faithful beyond what I can even comprehend.

And I’m going to cry out to Him with songs of praise.

“God’s loyal love couldn’t have run out, his merciful love couldn’t have dried up. They’re created new every morning. How great your faithfulness!” (Lamentations 3:22-23 MSG.)

“If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” (1 John 1:9 NIV.)

 “Oh come, let us sing to the Lord; let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation! Let us come into his presence with thanksgiving; let us make a joyful noise to him with songs of praise!” (Psalms 95: 1-2 ESV.)