Friday, January 13

tell me it's true

The news this morning is flooded with stories of a bomb-strapped bank robbery, a celebrity with a drug and alcohol addiction, strange stranger inseminations and deaths of humans caused by other humans. I hate these headlines and facts, and I usually don't even watch them. I usually change the channel or shut the TV off. It's not that I don't know those things go on, I just hate to fill my heart with bad news when it is in desperate need of good, hopeful, encouraging news.

But this morning is different. This morning I realize that all of these people who have made headlines in horrible ways are in need of that same thing. These people are in need of something hopeful and good to get them to stop acting out of the huge, hollow depths of fear.

It's taken me a while-and quite a few hours with a counselor-to figure out what I am actually afraid of. (Because, remember, there is only fear, or love.) And I'm starting to find my answer. A wonderful, kind, wise pastor told us, before getting married, that because we were following in God's will and because we loved Him, He would take care of it all. He would take care of the details and the stress and the anticipation and the night of and the honeymoon and all of the things in between. And he did mention things would be tough; there would be days of hard work, and fights of weird disagreements. (Like, toilet paper and the kitchen cupboards.) But in no way did he give us a little outline of how hard things could be. Maybe that's because, fortunately, he's never dealt with really tough. Maybe he has. Either way, when things went south-like, below the belt, hard to take, crushes your faith kind of south-something got in my head...

Are you sure you're following God's will? Are you sure He's got this? Did you pray enough? Did you prepare enough? Are you really faithful enough?

My fear became something close to, "What if God doesn't have it handled? What if He's not here? He has left you alone, out in the water, to fight and struggle and drown on your own. Maybe someone lied to you."

I was afraid of my Father leaving me here, in a place that I was so unprepared for. I was afraid of God being too preoccupied with starvation and murders and war to be here beside me when I needed Him most. I was afraid that I had made another rash decision, without discernment and obedience, and I was left alone to clean up the mess.

The senior citizen man who put a bomb on a grandmother's leg so that she would rob the bank and make him rich; he was afraid of something similar. The couple who is meeting a stranger they met on the internet to give them sperm so they can have a baby; they're incredibly afraid of something, too. And the actress who is hiding herself in drugs and alcohol, hoping she'll escape the hard battle of addiction; she's terrified. I am not judging these people; I'm relating to them. They are afraid that they are on their own, left to handle the mess they've found themselves in. They're afraid that there is no one out there to get them out of bankruptcy, or to bring them a child, or to help them cope and find a beautiful life. They're scared that the things they want and need will never be provided.

I'd rather have a pastor-any pastor-tell me how this life can beat you down. I'd rather have them tell me about the things that fear causes; the pain, heartache, bad decisions, disease, terror. I'd rather them tell me like it is. And then, once I've got a grip on what this world is all about, and I’ve gotten rid of the disillusionment of happy endings or movie romances, get my attention...

Tell me that my God is greater than that fear. Tell me that His love causes us to love and to trust. Tell me that He sees this crap and mourns for us. Tell me that He doesn't, however, just sit back and watch us and mourn from afar. Tell me that He's here, right beside me, with me, to hold me and carry me. Tell me that He never leaves me, no matter how bad, no matter how good. Tell me the truth.

I believe we'll never understand God if we don't understand the truth. The truth is that bad things will come, sometimes in elephant-sized truck loads, and sometimes by the dozens. The truth is that this life will get us down, and that it is not always easy, or good,  to say that everything is 'fine'. But the truth is also that God's got it. He's faithful and good, and BIG. He knows, He sees, and He loves, too. And He'll carry you, all the way through it, in His time. After you decide it’s up to Him, and not you or your pastor or your friend or your neighbor, He’ll help you in His time.

1 comment:

  1. you are so talented sweetie ... i love this one .. my far>> you r always in my prayers and i love you kiddo