Turtles

In March, when I was in group therapy, we were working through how shame affects us especially in our ability to connect to others.  One of our homework assignments was to draw a picture of what shame looks like to us. The following week we shared our picture and talked about what we drew.  I drew a turtle.
I drew a turtle because they are green with a hard shell exterior.
So you can imagine last week when we pulled into our driveway and saw this in our front yard I jumped out with my camera ready.
I wasn’t quite ready for this in my face –  but here is another angle from my son who promptly named the turtle “little baby turtle” and begged to keep it as a pet.  I smiled when my husband replied to him let’s let that turtle be free and carried him to a safe path away from the dangers of the highway and let him go.
Just a few days later we headed to the beach for the weekend… sand, sun and salt long overdue.  We like to go to different beaches and this time we were close to the beach I went to each summer for a week long camp with our church youth group.   We would have small group Bible study in the mornings, afternoons free for the beach/pool time, and in the evenings we would all come together for a powerful worship service.  I would often walk that aisle during the invitation to rededicate my life to Christ each summer.  I remember.
Our pastor recently spoke of when he was a youth pastor there were kids who would rededicate their lives on these retreats over and over – I could so relate. My oldest son went away to a week long camp with our church for the first time just weeks ago.  When he came back he was so thrilled and had so much fun – on fire for Christ.  I remember.
His first night back after everyone was in bed he woke up and came into our room and was upset.  He said camp was all about God and that life there was easy and he just knows how hard it’s going to be now that he’s back in the real world.   I said I know.  I remember.
We decided to visit the camp I went to as a kid.  On the way there I was telling my kids about how one of my friends at 15 accepted Christ for the first time at this very camp and died within weeks from being hit by a car at the beach.  This place….means so much to me.  I remember.
When we approached the gate they said we were not able to drive through today because they had a big event going on but that any other day would be fine.  At that point I was overwhelmed and thought maybe the gate was as much as I could handle – especially with my kids there.  One day I will go back.  I will visit that sacred ground.  I will visit my Sanctuary.  Thank you Jesus.  I remember.

Of course, there is a song that goes with this post.  My dear friend B, that used to chase me in the parking lot at church invited me to a Jonathan Pierce concert back in 2000 – I bought his album and his song Sanctuary is still on my iPod.

I tried to google the lyrics – but could not find them.
So, I will listen and write them out like I did long ago when google didn’t exist.

Listen on YouTube here:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vANnki8R-D8

Sanctuary – by Jonathan Pierce

I come into your sanctuary, a place that I have known
I’ve wept inside these walls.  (I’ve failed) I’ve failed and I have grown.
Such a harbor for the hurting yea.
A haven for my soul
in this place of sanctuary
in this refuge I call home

Sanctuary, oh by such comfort
holds my grace and liberty
Sanctuary, for the broken there is a safety found in you.

There’s nothing I can bring you
but only what I am
Nothing I can offer Lord, so humbly here I stand
my words fall short in their attempt
to open up this well
but yet my heart can sense that you are there

Sanctuary, oh my such comfort
holds my grace and liberty
Sanctuary, for the broken there is a safety found in you.

The pounding of the world outside my door
It can not remove you from this place
This sanctuary of grace
The presence of you Lord.
The presence of you Lord!

Sanctuary, oh by such comfort
holds my grace and liberty
Sanctuary, for the broken there is a safety found in you.

You hold my comfort
you hold my grace, my liberty
Sanctuary
for the broken, for the hurting
for the helpless, for the weeping
for the seeking
they find… sanctuary.

Psalm 63:2 (NIV)  I have seen you in the sanctuary and beheld your power and glory. 

 

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