Monday, April 27, 2015

The Day(s) I Stopped Dreaming


The day(s) I stopped waiting.

They came on so slowly I didn’t even notice.

I woke up sore, and expected to spend this day sore, and the next day and the next day and the next,

Like a CD skipping (or Pandora losing Wifi),

My life felt convicted.

I don’t say condemned because I didn’t feel that way.

I was comfortable in the sore, comfortable in the pain, comfortable in C.P. because it was me.

I stopped waiting.

On the soreness to stop, on God to give me my dreams.

I knew there was more, but I didn’t want to face it.

Hear me, there is a level of acceptance that is wisdom. God has taught me a lot through C.P.

How to never give up, to celebrate the small things, how to find glitter in unlikely places, how to love people who are different.

The problem arises when acceptance transitions to apathy, and an active belief that God may not care as much as He thinks He does.

But today, today, something happened. Someone told me God wanted to heal me.

This was not just any someone. This was,

My dear, sweet, crazy stubborn, loved beyond knowledge Zoe Grace.

Every. Time. I am around her it’s like looking in a mirror.

And she said them. The words.

The words I have such a complex relationship with,

“God wants to heal you.”

I knew a problem had arisen when all I could feel was frustrated anger.

Her faith was so unquestioning, and to be honest

I stopped caring if God healed me a long time ago,

But as a result of not caring I started to believe some lies.

“All of God’s gifts are hard. He has gifts for you but they stop at good, not perfect.”

“Prepare yourself because you will have small dreams come true, but don’t dream big.”

Here’s a big one, “If God doesn’t care about the C.P. part of your life, He sure won’t take care of the rest of it.”

So, like an anesthetic, I numbed myself to hard, to desire, because if I didn’t want, it didn’t hurt. So I became a pessimist, (realist), because if I expected the worst, nothing was out of my control.

Sin.

But I didn’t fall into it on purpose.

And I realized when precious Zoe said those words, the words,

 And I knew God was calling to life a dead part of me.

And dead parts seem safe. Because they don’t feel

But being alive? That’s a risk.

But as I talked to Father God about it,

I realized it’s a risk I have to take.

Because whether He heals me or not doesn’t really matter.

What matters is that I know His Heart in the midst of it.

He has good gifts for me. With C.P. Without C.P.

Healed or sick.

So if I dream of healing and He doesn’t give it,

He still has good gifts. Ceasing to dream was never His will.

The only one disqualifying myself from that is me.

And Zoe reminded me, God gives good gifts.

Today, I choose to accept them.

Thanks for the glitter sweet girl(even I’m having a hard time).

I can’t tell people to choose life if I’m unwilling to choose it myself.

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

And The Walls Came Tumbling Down


“And the Walls came tumbling down…”

 

I have had this song stuck in my head this evening. Retelling the story of the Battle of Jericho, and this is the last line….

 

Every time I heard this story as a kid I always identified with the Israelites, feeling hot and sweaty and angry….trusting God, questioning God, worshipping God, mad at God, all on a continuous loop.

As I have grown older, I have realized something…I am more like Jericho.

This city had so many beautiful things inside the Israelites couldn’t believe it. They didn’t feel worthy to possess all that was inside, and they ran away from the enemies that were lurking within the walls, enemies that felt too big to face.

I used to be scared to look in the mirror because of the scarred, scared angry little girl looking back at me.

The enemy of my own experience, my falls, not being able to tie my shoes, play a sport, go anywhere without people staring, all these emotions with no idea what to do with them…every single thing was a battle. Every time I looked in the mirror all I could think was…

I am going to lose. I don’t want to fight a battle I can’t win.

Going to Mercy I began to fight the battle, and a lot of battles were won.

But not the walls.

I still had walls.

I won’t be dependent on anyone else. I won’t love anyone else. I will share only X part of my heart. I will keep myself safe…safe within these walls…Of mistrust, anxiety, fear…because I can control my pain if I keep people out of all my mess.

Re hearing this story as an adult getting ready to teach it to my precious 8th grade girls, something occurred to me. The Israelites won this battle, and brought the walls down with two steps.

Trusting God and making noise.

Noise is in my life everywhere, every day, all the time. Noise telling me Poor thing. It’s not fair. Why?

And I began to feel the Lord making noise in my heart. The noise of my nieces laughing, their quiet I love you’s and gentle kisses.

The noise of my brother (sometimes yelling) to SPEAK LIFE OVER YOURSELF)

The noise of my sister in law telling me “You were meant to be a mom.”

The noise of my mom and I talking about the past and extending grace.

The noise of my daddy laughing and my little brother walking me to the door after a night of games.

The noise of African children and refugees.

And the noise made me dream….

And with those dreams

The

Walls

Came

Tumbling

Down

 

And I gave into fear.

I can’t want a family. I can’t want marriage. I can’t want the nations…what about CP? What about my independence? How on earth will I care for children? I am not the “wife” type. I hate cooking and cleaning exhausts me. And going to the nations…Lord have you seen my feet? But most of all…

The noise of being scared.

I spent the first half of my life not dreaming. And it was safe. But you know what? It wasn’t God’s will. Betsie Ten Boom said “There are no places that are safer than other places The only safe place is the center of God’s will.

I am in a crazy season. I’m emotional all the time. I love people with all I am. My nieces are basically my whole world. And my dreams? They terrify me.

But I am slowly learning to make noise,

Saying I love you.

Telling stories to my nieces

And my testimony to hurting women.

Crying (Yes, I cry now).

Laughing.

Speaking life.

Being real

Being vulnerable.

And slowly slowly

My walls have tumbled down

And the view is pretty great from here

Even though I have some rebuilding to do.