Beautiful Pathways

The spiral is an ancient symbol found everywhere in Greece. The single spiral has been likened to a “stairway to heaven” and symbolizes the cycle of life, death, birth, and rebirth. The continuous circle going in one direction indicates eternity, a never ending continuous line. This symbol first captured my attention in 2016 when I drew a continuous orange line in the form of a spiral in my journal. Not knowing the real meaning of the spiral, I just knew it was the Holy Spirit saying to me, “Just follow me, one direction, this way.”

My journal drawing from December 2016.

For the next two years I found myself following what seemed to be a rabbit trail, going wherever I was sent, to find what it is God wanted to reveal to me. In April of 2018, I was sitting in a room full of strangers in Atlanta with people who were all on a similar journey to find the answer to the question, “What’s next, God?” We were there to find our purpose or our calling for this season of our live through a process called Younique. I looked up on the screen as the introduction to our journey began. There was a huge orange spiral staring at me. I instantly recognized it as being just like the one I drew in my journal two years prior, it was even the same color, orange! The past two years suddenly began to make some sense and I knew God used each step to get me to this place and this point in time with this particular group of people. The pathway was clear to God, just not to me, I just had to obey and follow. This would be the beginning phase of my rebirth, my reawakening to my purpose in life.

The same day I drew the orange spiral I had found a tiny card stuck to a page of the journal with Isaiah 61:4 written on it.

They will rebuild the ancient ruins, and restore the place long devastated; they will renew the ruined cities that have been devastated for generations. NIV

It was hard to describe, and still is, how critical these words were to my life both then and now. The 3 R’s, Rebuild, Restore, and Renew would be a repetitive theme in my life and in our lives as a couple as you will find as you continue to read. In order to rebuild, there must be something torn down. I had to go through a spiritual process of rebuilding, restoring, and renewing in order to help others do the same in their lives. That is why this trip to Atlanta was significant. I had to experience this for myself first, a rebirth and reawakening of my identity in Christ in order to help others to discover their identity and embrace it for themselves. God used the spiral to confirm my path forward just as it says in the Psalms (16:11, 27:11, 23:3).

Stepping where I have never stepped before, not knowing what is ahead is one of the scariest things I have ever had to do. Rebekah Lyons says in her book, Rhythms of Renewal, ”Bravery is moving scared.” I had to keep moving despite my feelings. God would also use the words and theme from this part of Isaiah to show me His plan for me.

So moving forward is what I did. Several months later, another orange spiral showed up! I was cleaning out a closet in the area of the church where I had spent over two decades of my life, as I was preparing to leave my position there. A plastic orange spiral I had never noticed before was in a box of random stuff I collected. It was in 3D too, so I couldn’t miss it! God was reassuring me that I was going in the right direction even if my feelings sometimes told me otherwise. This must be bravery, because I was scared! But God was assuring me that He was near and was leading me forward, even if I couldn’t see it all in full view yet. One thing was clear to me, I had to let go of something in order to take hold of what God had prepared and planned for me to step into for this next season of my life.

Today in my coaching sessions, that plastic orange spiral is still being used. It’s called the Clarity Spiral. It helps me to explain to others the process of gaining clarity in our lives. This simple plastic spiral has been used to help more people than I can count now to find clarity and purpose as they seek their God-given design (DNA) for their lives. I discovered that the spiral is also found in the DNA structure. This was incredibly profound to me as I stared at the picture I found in my research. God, in his infinite wisdom created us with His DNA using this shape that means forever. We are HIS forever and for eternity. We are His workmanship as it says in Ephesians 2:10. We have his DNA. Amazing! The spiral continues to lead me in deeper ways to understand how powerful and loving our God truly is.

Fast forward now three years, the spiral is still a thing. I actually didn’t give it much thought until we were sent to Greece this past year. Yes, you read that correctly, SENT. I guess it only makes sense that God would send my husband and I to Greece, a place filled with ancient ruins! Actually it didn’t make sense to us at the time, that’s how we knew it was God sending us. We were given a trip to follow in the footsteps of Paul in Greece and Turkey by someone I had met along the way on one of my journeys a few years prior. We were chosen out of so many other possible “candidates” to take the place of this couple who couldn’t make the trip. It couldn’t have come at a more appropriate time in our lives! Obviously, we didn’t see it then, but once we got there and even after we got home, God made it very clear what he was doing. And of course, the spirals were everywhere we went!

I hadn’t even thought about the spiral being an ancient Greek symbol, my mind typically doesn’t think about Greek architecture and history. I was focused on the people, like Paul, John, and Lydia that we would hear about and get to stand where they stood. But that is also where I saw the spirals! We first began to see the spirals in the ancient Greek ruins along the promenade in Ephesus. They were all over these magnificent giant structures and were all around us in this ancient city where Paul spent much time.

On the island of Patmos, where John was exiled and where I truly felt the spirit like never before, there were spirals for us to bring home as reminders. One was in the form of a dainty little ring, just perfect for my finger! I was told by the sweet store clerk where I bought the spiral ring that the continuous circle going in one direction indicates eternity, a never ending continuous line and is linked to our souls. Then we were sent to a shop by our tour guide who is also a local artist there to see some of her work. We found the shop she described in town and hoped to purchase a piece of hers. What did we find but a beautiful little spiral shaped shell sculpture! Really God? Wow. Then as I was checking out, I asked the shop owner his name, he said Spiros! I said, like the spiral? He smiled a huge smile and said, “Yes”. I hadn’t even realized until we left the shop and looked up to see this huge sign over the storefront…that that was the name of the place!

I know, you can’t make this stuff up!

But my favorite spiral sighting was in Philippi, while walking the streets of the ancient Via Ignatia. We had just come from seeing the prison cell where Paul and Silas were in chains. I was on information overload. I began to wander a little. Then my eyes locked in on something. As I was looking down, there they were, all along the ancient roadway…tiny little shells in the shape of a spiral! At first I hadn’t noticed them because they were so tiny, soon I would realize they were all around us. I saw them on rocks, in the clover, stuck between stones in the road. They were the same shell shape that I had just purchased in the shop on Patmos! These tiny little shells were beautiful reminders of God’s mercy and grace and His infinite, never ending love for us! I couldn’t stop taking pictures of these tiny little treasures. It was one of my favorite highlights of this trip!

It's about the size of my thumbnail!

But the spirals didn’t end after Greece, they continued to make appearances, of course! One day in December, I received a small box in the mail. I usually don’t get boxes delivered because I don’t order online much. But this was for me! It was a box containing 2 special cookies each decorated with an orange spiral! They were a “Thank You” for being a Coach and Master Trainer in the Future Church Organization where this journey all began in Atlanta back in 2018. It’s funny how God works, these spirals come in all forms, even tasty treats! I really thought this was such a cool reminder that God isn't done yet. He is using these spirals as a fun way to keep me on the path he has for me. He is doing a new thing and I need to pay attention.

God really does have a sense of humor! For Christmas, my son and his girlfriend surprised me with a set of earrings, you guessed it…spirals. The funniest part is, they had been oblivious to all the spiral stories I had been telling and just picked them out at a local craft event because they reminded them of me. This was the icing on the cake (or cookies) for 2021!! God is so good to show us His pathway for us. In fact, I counted 31 scriptures in the concordance of my bible that contained the word "path"! I think that’s because God doesn’t want us to miss all the amazing things He has for us when we let Him lead and we do the following! I love the scripture that paints this beautiful picture for us…

Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light for my path. Psalm 119:105 NIV

The beautiful pathway is illuminated for us, we need only to follow it.

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