Have you ever read Hinds Feet on High Places?
If not, get a copy today and begin an adventure! I read this many, many years ago. I gave away so many paperback copies I eventually bought myself the hardback copy so I would NOT give it away. At one time there were no notes for teaching this book, so I wrote my own and lead a group through the book as a Scripture study. This allegory is still teaching me about life with Christ my Lord.
While recovering from this surgery, during a prayer time one morning, I was led again to a scene at the end of the book when Much-Afraid, a timid girl with crippled feet, was led to a ‘desolate altar in this valley of shadows’ to make a burnt offering as commanded by the Shepherd.’
It was not until my retreat January 10 that I re-read and listened to an audible version (free from the library through Hoopla) to review what happened in that sacrifice. I had forgotten that at every altar Much-Afraid built throughout the journey she offered the Lord a portion of her will. This time was no different.
Romans 12:1-2 (NRSV) I appeal to you therefore, brothers and sisters, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship. Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your minds, so that you may discern what is the will of God—what is good and acceptable and perfect.
What if this living sacrifice of our bodies intentionally included our will, too? Could you do it for Christ? Would you be willing for the Father? Might you ask the Holy Spirit to enable you to conform to God’s will that you might be transformed?
Much-Afraid, like us, was asked to offer a portion of her will at various places in her journey. We are not asked to do that all at once at the outset of our journey. I do not believe we would be able to accomplish it all, psychologically or otherwise. I do not even recognize all the strongholds of my will until I begin to stumble over new ones that are revealed to me as I follow my Lord through this life journey. Thus, there is no way I could consciously offer them as a living sacrifice all at once. Salvation and transformation are on-going processes.
So I have had to sit and wait for healing to come. I am still finding three months later that, no, the foot healing is not yet complete. I was reminded once again that healing, like transformation is a process. My will trips me more than my feet these days.
When I build an altar and sacrifice a portion of my will that is causing me to stumble, the Father has promised to accept that offering and transfigure that portion of me. 1 John reads that if we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins AND cleanse us from all unrighteousness. So how does that become transformation? Not an easy question. In my experience, transformation comes as I continue and continue to yield to the highest and best that God offers me. No one and done here.
Here is a tiny sketch I made to illustrate the Hinds Feet study. I pray you will examine your heart after you read this, build your altar, fan the flames, offer your will a living sacrifice to the One Who loves us best!
“Prayer is sitting in silence until it silences us,
choosing gratitude until we are grateful”