for the last few months my life has resembled a piece of driftwood bobbing up and down being knocked to and fro. SO much of 2010 and a good portion of 2011 had me reeling and constantly crying out "PLEASE give us mercy". There is so much that I cannot share about the journey that we have traveled - but know this - it was intense, it was hard, and I did not like it. And then all of a sudden the intensity stopped. Now instead of one good day a month, we have one or two bad ones a month. It does NOT make any sense to me at all. Life frustrates me, humbles me, and brings me up short. For all of the things I thought I knew, really I know nothing.
I have gotten a clearer view of me in the past two years than honestly I ever cared to see. But one thing that has shaped me more than any other. The intensity of what we went through focused me, hyper focused almost. And looking back I see a pattern in my life, life will be smooth, happy and awesome and then BAM. The storm hits and as it rages I cling to God, to His Word.
But as the clouds clear, the rain dries up I begin to drift along. I stop clinging.
And that is where I find myself today, the fifteenth day of a new year. Now that things are better my life is out of focus in some areas. I have Jewish heritage, was raised a Christian and have journeyed about as far as I could in the other direction from God on more than one occasion. From the time I was a little girl I had this "picture" of who God was. Formed mainly from snidbits of Sunday School lessons, experiences with the adults in my life, and whatever spots remained confusing, I simply made up as I went along. When I went off to college I was thrown for a loop. HUGELY thrown. This God that I had fixed in my mind was NOT doing what I thought He would or should be doing in certain situations. He let me hurt. He let me feel hunger and not enough. He let me see people for who they were and not who I wanted them to be. He let me fail over and over and over. He let me feel humiliation and shame from choices I made and things I did and/or said. He let me feel loss and rejection. Now of course I could not have reached adulthood and not have felt those things before, but this time it was different. This time there was no one else to blame it on but me. I had these dreams that I had clung to for as long as I could remember and one morning as I woke up I took a good look around I saw that these dreams lay tattered, broken at my feet. I was devastated. I was lost and felt untethered. To top it all off I had this idea of love that I had and I had been waiting for that boy to come along and when he did, he (the boy I was sure I would some day marry) threw it back in my face and laughed at me. Humiliated me. I hurt. My heart broke.
He was up to something.
As the years began to unfold and as the hurts and disappointments came He slowly drew me into His Word and deeper into Him. He began to show me a new way to dream and as He stitched my heart back together He brought into my life a man who would love me back with more love than I even thought possible. A man that accepts me, encourages me and stands by me. A man who does not laugh at me, but with me. And for a season it seemed that we would have our happily ever after.
And so I relaxed and began to drift.
But as our children began to arrive on the scene life was indeed taking us on a wild ride again. Extended family relationships fell apart and tore at my heart. I failed others. My husband began to travel with his job and I missed him. SO much. We had barely enough to make ends meet. More than a few weeks went by that I ate ramen noodles for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. I had babies at home and sleep was hard to come by. Things happened that scared me. Loving others is never easy and especially when you have clung to selfishness in your heart. Having a baby will cure you of that VERY quickly. All of a sudden life was not all about me anymore and I loved something more than I loved myself and that something was completely dependent on me. As the years passed I began to appreciate and love my husband more deeply. Then all of a sudden we moved, my husband stopped traveling and life settled down again. It was blissful and wonderful. There was hope for restoration of some relationships, there was enough to eat yummy things, there were new friendships and great books to read. I could take a deep breath and relax into life again. This time through the ups and downs of all of the bad days I had clung with a ferocity to God's presence, His Word, Him.
But as life began to relax so did I. And once again I began to drift.
Then one February morning in 2010 BAM. The bottom of life fell out and I was terrified this time it would never be the same. This time it had to do with one of our children. Although through the fear and through the unknown I found myself taking hope in the fact that I had a clearer picture of who God was. This time, although badly shaken, I began to remember what I had learned. I reminded myself daily that even if He let things happen to and around me that terrified, hurt, and confused me that He was there. Holding me close to Him through the duration. For a year and a half the days were hard, oppressive and full of unknowns and what ifs.
Then all of a sudden life calmed down and here I am this morning.
I have no idea what the future holds. I have no easy tie up to this post or answers to the questions that rage in my heart. But I do know this. I knew I had to sit down here this morning and write this. Write it for me, to remind me of His faithfulness. Write it for our children who will someday hopefully read this and also see His faithfulness. A week or so ago I wrote a journal entry about seeking God and not too long after that I read a post from the Simple Mom's blog. It was about the Japanese word Kaizen. And basically how if a drip drop of a water faucet is left alone long enough it will eventually fill a bucket. That is what I want my life to be this year. I want to be grounded, not drifting. I want to seek God moment by moment by moment. He is my anchor. My wind. My safety, my thrill, my purpose, my plan, my love, and my breath. He is my beginning, my middle and my end. He is my moments, my days, my weeks, and my years. And some day when it is all said and done I ache to hear "well done good and FAITHFUL servant" - I am beginning to realize that the faithful part happens drip drop at a time. Left alone the drip drop of striving to be faithful will eventually fill and define a lifetime. My life.