This morning I decided to go for a run downtown, to break the monotony of my latest neighborhood runs. While on my run, I tripped pretty suddenly, and to my shock I went flyyyyyyying and landed pretty ungraciously with what can only be described as a heavy thud, and well....It hurt. A lot.
I was fervently praying that nobody saw me, cause I gotta tell ya...it FELT like one of those falls where you just can't believe how BADLY someone can truly fall. Like one of those BAD America's Funniest Home videos my boys and I can't even laugh at because we feel SO bad for the poor soul who just bit it so hard.
My pride was hurt, my clothes got dirt on them, and it was painful. Then...just like in life, I had to decide if I was going to keep running. So I laid there for a second, caught my breath, got back up, dusted off the dirt, and prayed that if someone DID see, they could also see that I got back up, and kept on running.
I'd love to tell you that's always been my attitude but truth is most of my life I would have gone back to my car, licked my wounds, felt sorry for myself, and then I would have driven home in shame and defeat.
You never know where your next life metaphor will come from...sometimes it comes at you while you're laying on the sidewalk wondering WHAT the heck just happened, pride and ribs bruised. Then truth washes over you and you tell yourself: "Hey, you're not who you used to be, now get up, and let's keep running."
Friday, February 19, 2016
It’s surprising to still find so much sorrow and grief inside..as though the grieving never fully reaches its end.
Turns out the process of grieving my life, my losses, my pain, and my sin has taken longer than I ever thought imaginable. Years. A process that comes and goes, starts and stops, finds me suddenly and surprisingly in rare moments of quiet, or in the middle of the hurried crazy pace of life.
Back a few years ago when this process started at the prompting of a God who loves me too much to let me sit stuck in my misery, I thought: I’ll do this hard thing. I will be brave.
And in 3-6 months I’ll be a BETTER version of myself, right? Let’s do this!
Today I sit in such a different space. YEARS later, still grieving, still finding raw places of deep pain, still sifting through the rubble, and thinking, I don’t know how long this is going to take, or what I will find on the other side.
It is slow, so slow.
It is deep. It runs down into the roots of my being, covering and coloring my entire life.
He leads me into these places deliberately, like a good daddy, leading the way in wisdom, patience, and compassion.
The thing is, when you spend your entire life denying pain and hiding from it, once it starts coming, it’s just so much, it makes sense that it takes a long time to feel it all.
But He knows and I know now too, that unless I do, the joy will never be AS full. And already the joy I’ve had in this long and painful season has been deeper than ever before.
Deuteronomy 30:19 (NLT) says:
"Today I have given you the choice between life and death, between blessings and curses. Now I call on heaven and earth to witness the choice you make. Oh, that you would choose life…”
I chose life. I choose it consistently….clawing my way back from the allure of denial and numbness.
And in choosing life I discovered that LIFE comes with PAIN.
Life, real life, LIVED with my heart and soul carries suffering.
And in the pain I keep choosing life, because the love, oh THE LOVE HE has for me carries me through all of it. And the joy found in His arms is not like any I’ll ever be able to concoct on my own terms.
And THE FREEDOM.
The freedom to be, to hurt, to sit in the reality of the story He is writing with my life. The freedom to be held by perfect arms of love is the safest place I’ve ever known.
The grief takes me step by step, tear by tear, closer to His heart, and closer to myself.
In His heartbeat I find a WHOLE world that does not exist without letting go.
What’s that thing people say when they really enjoy their work out? “Hurts so good!!”
It hurts to so good to LIVE a real, broken, painful, deliberate life. It hurts so good and it’s full of beauty. Full of Jesus. Full of hope.