You were in it from the start.
As my head was squeezed till I thought it would surely burst; and then, with a gush of water and blood, I emerged to gasp and slowly blink my eyes in wonder at this strange new world, You were there supporting me.
Born a boy and considered dangerous, I was decreed to die; but You were there nurturing and supporting. Amidst the carnage, and the moans of mourning mothers, You held me firm. You leaned, unseen, into me. You rescued me.
From the start, You formed Your words in me. Like the writings in a holy book, You wrote my life's story, destined to ring through the ages. And, like a bookend, You propped me up when I leaned and threatened to fall. In all of my mistakes, You were there.
"Murderer!" they shouted -- and I knew they were right. Yet You spared me the ultimate price.
With me as I fled, You supported me, writing, writing, writing into my life; forming the book that was to be me. You took me to palaces, deserts, through thick darkness, plagues and visions of Your flaming light; through defeatist murmurings and victory songs.
So many times I faltered. Stammering, unsure, I would have fallen from the shelf, pages torn, story unfinished, but as I leaned on You, You held me till Your support became my delight; till I knew, deep in my heart, that without You, I was nothing but a few scraps of paper with meaningless scribbles. Until I begged You not to leave.
Oh, the stories written in the pages of my life. What a book! Sweltering days and freezing nights; acmes of ecstasy and valleys of dark despair; ferocious fighting, rebellious dissenters and tired, angry mobs, wailing for water or moaning for meat.
You wrote my story from start to finish. I didn't want it, but You ordained it, and how glad I am that You did.
That You should choose me to be Your Deliverer is more than I can fathom.
That You should talk with me face to face, revealing secrets long hidden in You -- secrets of our origins so that I, as part of my story, would write more manuscripts, starting with the Book of Beginnings.
And now You have revealed that it's time to conclude this book.
I am on the mountain overlooking the Promised Land. Far in the distance, I see what we have been longing for these past 40 years. You told me I shall not enter it -- but I am content with my story, for it is not really mine, but Yours. It is the story of Your sustaining faithfulness, Your sustaining grace in times of failing, Your sustaining purpose for Your people and above all, Your sustaining love. Each man, each family, each tribe is a book of Your writing. Like divine bookends, from Egypt to the Promised Land, You have supported them, holding them together as a nation when they should have fallen apart.
As for me, my story is told. I am satisfied. It is time to remove the bookend, my God. Let me fall to the dust from whence I came, while my spirit breaks free and soars to You without restraint.
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