In this full colour illustrated book of devotional readings, the third in the ‘Bouquet of Blessings’ trilogy, Doreen Harrison once again draws on her many years of rich and varied experience to present a fresh selection of inspiring stories which are sure to encourage, challenge and bless readers of all ages.
The Green Coat
I recollect a lady who was referred for counselling, and on her first appointment she arrived wearing a heavy green coat, with a shawl collar—only remarkable because it was June, and the UK was experiencing a heat wave! Although there was a place to hang coats, she kept hers on. However, as the session continued, she began to perspire, and finally, she shrugged off the coat and sighed. ‘That was my camouflage!’ she confessed. This lady was anorexic, painfully thin, and she hid her problem under the heavy green coat.
I recollect this incident at the beginning of a new year. God asks us, ‘What sort of camouflage are you wearing, my children?’ With 365 unspoiled days ahead of us, it is vital that we step over the threshold on the new year without pretense or cover up. ‘Here I am – wholly available,’ should be our prayer—not who I was, nor who I would like to be, just me, just as I am.
Anorexia is usually due to a need to be in control. Often due to circumstances or situation, refusing to eat is the only self-control available. It is such a relief to remember that God is always in control. He is absolutely reliable at all times and in all places. We do not need to impress God with our own ability—or lack of ability! He welcomes us into His family when we let go of self, and sin, and let Him take over. His is an unconditional acceptance.
The day came when the lady no longer needed that heavy green coat—she no longer needed camouflage. She understood that God loved her and that His control was unthreatening and the she was free in His love and grace. She had transferred control to God. Consider these verses from the Bible:
‘Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus’ (Philippians 4)
May you know the joy of the Lord to be your strength all through the year ahead.