As I was praying with a group of ladies this week my focus wandered to a stool in the room which was piled high with cushions. I pondered. One could sit on them maybe?
My mind then drifted to the fairy tale of the Princess and the pea. The story tells of a princess who could feel a pea under her mattress. She was so distraught, she kept demanding more mattresses until she was piled high with them, but still she could feel the pea; it was such an irritation to her. As I pondered, I ‘saw’ a pearl. This pearl was the size of a large marble and was catching the light radiating a gentle beauty. It was sitting upon the topmost cushion. That was it really, my vision as I prayed. Then it faded and I was left wondering. As is my custom I asked God for the meaning of this and immediately remembered the parable of the pearl of great price,
“…the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant seeking beautiful pearls, who, when he had found one pearl of great price, went and sold all that he had and bought it.” Matthew 13:45
The Bible refers to pearls as things of great value and even likens one to the Kingdom of Heaven! and in this parable Jesus talks of the man selling all he had to obtain it. It interested me that in my ‘vision’ I had seen a pearl and not a pea. In the story of the princess and the pea, the pea was an irritant, whereas in the case of a pearl, it is because of an irritant within an oyster shell that the pearl is formed. This is done over many years and hidden from view.
Many of us it seems have things that irritate and distress us, and whilst we could pile mattress upon mattress upon them, it might be best to let the irritant become a thing of great beauty, and value. This can only be done in the ‘secret place’, the place of abiding in God’s very presence and letting Him turn our sorrow into a thing of great beauty and delight. Then at the appointed time God will bring us proudly out and instead of being hidden away in our pain and disappointment, we can be seated upon the upper most cushion, and we can radiate a gentle beauty bringing glory to God, the one who placed us there. In so doing we have found ourselves the Kingdom of Heaven! And we remain cushioned by His abiding love.
’God blesses those who are poor and realize their need for him, for the Kingdom of Heaven is theirs. Matthew 5:3
‘He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High Shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.’ Psalm 91:1
As many of my readers will be aware, I have often written about pain, suffering and healing. But I feel that now God is saying it is time – God’s appointed time, to be placed higher and to be seen. So let us shine in the place God has put us and gently radiate His glory.