The God of our Lonely Journey is Silent…

I am reading Abba’s Child by Brennan Manning, and it is hitting, carving, digging, and pulling out things in me that I was entirely unaware needed to be dealt with. There are nights that I can only read a couple of paragraphs, and then must put it down because the emotions are just too much and I need space to process… Sometimes giving myself a week or more before I drag myself back to this amazing book that plants me in emotions every time I read it.

Tonight is a night where one of the 10+ pages of quotes I have pulled out have just sat and resonated with me… I found myself overcome with the need to share.

Here are two of the latest quotes that I cannot shake:

How does the life-giving Spirit of the risen Lord manifest Himself on days like that? (he described a bad day from beginning to end that he had experienced) In our willingness to stand fast, our refusal to run away and escape into self-destructive behavior. Resurrection power enables us to engage in the savage confrontation with untamed emotions, to accept the pain, receive it, take it on board, however acute it may be. And in the process we discover that we are not alone, that we can stand fast in the awareness of present risenness and so become fuller, deeper, richer disciples. We know ourselves to be more than we previously imagined. In the process we not only endure but are forced to expand the boundaries of who we think we really are.

And secondly, I have spent months like this, finally I have words..:

“When tragedy makes its unwelcome appearance and we are deaf to everything but the shriek of our own agony, when courage flies out the window and the world seems to be a hostile, menacing place, it is the hour of our own Gethsemane. No word, however sincere, offers any comfort or consolation. The night is bad. Our minds are numb, our hearts vacant, our nerves shattered. How will we make it through the night? The God of our lonely journey is silent….

We are able, as Etty Hillesun, the Dutch Jewess who died in Auschwitz on November 30, 1943, wrote, ‘to safeguard that little piece of God in ourselves’ and not give way to despair. We make it through the night and darkness gives way to the light of morning. The tragedy radically alters the direction of our lives, but in our vulnerability and defenselessness we experience the power of Jesus in His present risenness.”

– Abba’s Child, Brennan Manning, (pp. 105-106).
(emphasis added by me)

Slowly, I feel as though I am healing. I have begun to ask for it, which I’m not entirely sure I have ever done before. And, not even healing from the last couple of years, but across the board. Insecurities created in me as a small child have come up and begun to be dealt with, healed, and restored. Issues I have struggled with my entire life have begun to be looked in the face and replaced with Truth.

It is quite the emotionally exhausting task to sift through your heart’s pain and allow yourself to feel each emotion, identifying why and where it came from, then slowly… ever so slowly, opening my hand and allowing God to examine and talk it over with me.

To say that I am tired and worn out trying to work through these things with God is laughable. I would love so much to just be done, to drop them and move on.. But, I do not see that happening overnight. Everything is a process, and so this too must also be one I guess.

But, I finally feel as though my faith is being led by hope.

So, I leave you with yet another quote from the book:

“‘The mystery is Christ among you, your hope of glory’ (Colossians 1: 27). Hope knows that if great trials are avoided great deeds remain undone and the possibility of growth into greatness of soul is aborted.

 

Decisions to Be Made…

IMG_0624My heart has been anxious, scattered, and felt unnerved lately… And, unfortunately, this may be a little bit of a jumbled post as I try to iron out some of the scattered thoughts…

Last night while I slept, it felt as though instead of sleeping and dreaming, I wrestled with questions and struggled to find my footing again. I am not sure if God and I were wrestling, or if I was just stressing…

For the first time in a long time, I find myself struggling through a plethora of insecurities… Am I good enough, strong enough, pretty enough, smart enough, loving enough, caring enough?.. Basically my insecurities have boiled down to, “Am I enough?” Sometimes it feels as though my insecurities come in waves, disappearing entirely for a while, and then crashing down on me once again. I love the seasons when they are gone because I feel uninhibited and free to dance in who I am.

I am in this weird place where I have total peace and no doubts about moving forward with my consulting work… I am doing exactly what I am supposed to be doing. I mean, it is definitely hard work, and requiring a lot of hours from me, but I love watching it unfold, and I truly enjoy the consulting itself.. but mostly, I love the people who I get to help.

It seems interesting and quite frustrating to finally feel like I have direction in one area of my life, and feel as though satan is attacking (or maybe merely just whispering to) my doubts and insecurities.

The best way I can describe it is, my inner layers are growing weary; that I desire stability and certainty, but instead what I find is doubt and uncertainty… almost across the board too, which is just aggravating. When I stop and survey all the aspects of things in my life, all of the decisions to be made, the stressors and of course all the uncertainties, I find my heart just being tired… No overwhelming emotion, just fatigue. I know that while I have a huge support system, I am ultimately alone in making decisions, and just feel exhausted at my center for at having to make them all.

I also think some of the weariness is due to trying to work towards healing wounds and insecurities, and realizing that I am probably more fragile than I care to admit or show…

True to my nature though, I tend towards being an all or nothing type person. Now that I have financial and professional direction, I want to work as hard as I can to get the other areas of my life to fall together and heading in the same direction as well.

I mean, I am certain that Jesus is my provider, and I have no doubt that He is also my sustainer. But, I would like to also feel secure and safe for a little while. There is a huge difference between knowing and feeling.

I really am thankful and amazed at all of the ways God has taken care of me, over the last year especially. Words really do not accurately describe the emotions that I feel when I think of all of the people who have stood in the gap… Because, regardless of your view of me, I really am not worthy of the amount of love and support that I have received.

On the other hand, I have felt for years, and even more so over the last year that no matter how many people love and support me, I am ultimately responsible for taking care of myself. My sense of responsibility for taking care of myself does not come from a prideful place, and certainly not from the viewpoint of not needing help, and I have no desire to do this because of an “I am woman hear me roar” attitude. However, my feeling of responsibility is more from the practical sense that, if I do not do it, there is no one else walking this journey with me, so it must be me.

I think now is a good time to pause and say that this “by myself” perspective is not at all directed at my lack of need for Christ or the Holy Spirit’s guidance.. Nor is it directed at feeling as though I do not need help.. cause I without doubt do need help. But, I am certain that my need does not inherently mean it is anyone else’s obligation to step in and help.

There are days that I feel like maybe I seek out and rely on others too much because I definitely seek out other people to talk things over with (sometimes ad nauseam) to help me figure out what and how to do all of this well. I am so, so thankful for the friendship, patience, and support of my sounding boards. But, when I climb into bed at night thinking over my day, I mull over and pray for the things that I did not do so well, the choices that need to be made the following day, and the situations that I am uncertain about, and I am reminded that this journey is between God and I.

Cast your burden upon the Lord and He will sustain you;
He will never allow the righteous to be shaken.” – Psalm 55:22