I am not quite sure why I have been avoiding a post on here.
Perhaps it is because I am in the middle of a writing groove on my current story (which is always nice).
And perhaps it is because my roller-coaster life poured out in blog-post fashion might cause a little reader-whip-lash. It just seems tiresome to write a post that will, inevitably, be in-valid in the near future because of the newest development in my journey.
Yeah, this desert has been anything but flat and uneventful.
But, something I have noticed, that has been pretty consistent, and a desperate oasis amidst the suffocating sand storms, is El Roi.
The God Who Sees... sees me.
And hears me.
I get to places where I never thought my soul would tread, where the heat of skepticism and crushing pain promise to burn my heart to ash, and I sit there in a shocking state of hopelessness.
Never before had I felt anguish like I have this past year...but I do, and now I understand the same feeling David felt when he had been betrayed by the one he'd looked up to for so long. Funny, I took a study about David exactly a year before I journeyed into these similar emotional battlefields as he once had.
Last night, I was in that place again. The burning place of hopelessness. And I cried to God, "Where are you? Will you show up!" Because I honestly thought I could not do this anymore. My heart had nothing left to give.
And I went to bed numb, and lost.
Only to awake to affirmation threefold (as always...God often affirms me or works in me in three different ways during a pivotal moment of my walk).
First, a text from a spiritual sister who I haven't talked to in weeks. She said that she felt a strong urge to pray for me and that she sensed that I needed it badly. She gave me the verses, Ephesians 6:10-13 -
" Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of His might. 11 Put on the full armor of God, so that you will be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil. 12 For our struggle is not against [a]flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places. 13 Therefore, take up the full armor of God, so that you will be able to resist in the evil day, and having done everything, to stand firm."
Let's just say, sweet drink of confirmation in my battle...in my thirst for understanding as to what the heck this is all about.
Secondly, as I got ready for church, I dropped to my knees in deep conviction to confess to God. And suddenly, I was given some wisdom on how to move forward in all of this. And it had something to do with remembering that verse above, and mostly, the word God gave me in another enlightening moment long ago when my journey in this desert of spiritually mis-matched marriage began:
LOVE!!! Why do I forget the meaning of that word? Why do I forget the perfect model of the perfect Person who perfected Love in such an attainable way? I fall into the trap of conditional love time and time again. No wonder I stumble into hopelessness. That kind of love has no hope in it.
It was at church where God sealed this revelation of my next step in the journey. You know, that perfect sermon that needed to be heard (I even had a close friend who knows my struggle, call me to be sure I was going to church this morning)...Did he write it for me? He talked about that battle above, the Person I had kinda ignored because of the trials before me...and then, of course the sermon reminded me of Hope...and... L.O.V.E. You know, all you need is...
Because He loved us first.
Tonight, I sat across from my husband on a quick date night, and I accepted him and I apologized to him for my resentment and conditional love. It was the weirdest moment because I took the time to form the words, sitting there for minutes in silence...knowing my husband was wondering if the "D" word was going to crush our coffee cups between us...and I spoke. And then I realized all this time, I have not given him the compassion and love he needs...and he needs it, because he is hurt and he is lonely and he is stuck. I think this whole thing is bigger than a proclamation of Atheism on his part. So much bigger than a statement.
It's a heart change.
And it's not just about his heart change to disbelief. It is just as much about mine.
And God keeps telling me, and I listen for a little, then I forget, and I keep roaming this desert ready to die of exhaustion.
Praying that this time, I learn...I don't want this journey to last like it has in the past for those Israelites.
40 years is too long!