And thinking, thinking, thinking......thinking through dreams and so many things that crowd and clutter my head and burden my heart. He hears all my thoughts, because in all that thinking, I'm talking to Him......and I know that He sees each and every tear. The phrase of Him collecting them all in a bottle keeps going through my head, as that phrase has kept popping up here and there recently, seeing and reading it so many times.
Thinking about all the things I've said to Him the past few months. Conversations I've had with God, whispered prayers, pleas and cries that go something like this:
I don't want his, Lord....please make it stop. Please take it from me.
I am here.
I know You're here, but I don't want this, Lord. I don't want to feel this way, I don't want to think about this anymore. I want to laugh and giggle and smile and be silly. I want to go and do.....and serve....and be happy. I have so much to be happy about. Please, please take it.
I am here.
Why aren't you listening??? Please take this....all of it. I don't want it. I don't have time for this, don't have time to feel this way. I have no right to feel this way. Are you even listening???
I am here. Right here, with you.
You're not listening. Why aren't you listening??? I am no good to You this way. No good to my family. No good to my friends. What is the point of this?? Please, please, please......take it.
I am here. I am listening. I have not left you.
Sigh. I don't know what to do, Lord. I don't know why You're not taking it. What am I doing wrong? I can't keep feeling this way, can't keep going with all of this inside of me.
You don't have to.
Don't You understand how much this hurts?? That I can't even speak the words, that I can't even find them when people ask me what's wrong?? I keep trying to give it to You. I can barely even pray. I pray the same thing over and over and over again......when I can even manage to get the words out. WHAT AM I SUPPOSED TO DO???
Write. I didn't show you how to do it for nothing.
I have. I have journaled. Or I have tried to. I have tried to write, tried to channel my thoughts and feelings, tried to do something with it.
Privately. Who told you to make it private?
Ummmmmm, NO. That's not what I put so much work into my blog for. NO. No one wants to hear my story or listen to me whine. NO.
I've never told my story before......only to a select few. A very select few. I don't like to go there, don't like to go back. Going back is uncomfortable. It hurts. I can tell you about when I was saved. I can tell you details about my life after my salvation. But I don't go back. I've never seen the point, never been willing to go there........and dread and avoid situations in Christian circles where they want you to tell your testimony. I begin with my salvation and move forward.....and people look at me like, that's it?? Yes.....that's it. Nothing here to tell. Nothing exciting or dramatic in comparison to some. Move on now. It's always made me so very uncomfortable. I just don't go there. I change the subject. Or find something to laugh at. Or ask someone a question that shifts the focus off of me and gets them talking about something else. Anything else. I hate to have the focus on me.
Although I'm trying with all my might, I'm not being very successful at talking Him into taking this from me, at pushing, pushing, pushing it away. At least one thing is clear. There's something I'm supposed to do with it. Because if He has me here in this place, for this long, and He won't take it from me, there must be a reason. A reason and a purpose and an outcome I can't see.
Last year was the worst year I can remember having and I can't have another year like that one. I don't want to be here, but I am......and it hurts in way, it hurts so deeply, that I don't know if I could ever find the adequate words to describe it. But I have faith that He will bring me through it, that He will help me find my place of rest.....and just like so many times before.....just like when I look back on those memories I push away because they hurt too much and yet can see through the pain how He worked it all out for good.....I know that He will work this for good, too.
And if I have to be here despite my best efforts not to be, then I want Him to use it. Even if it means saying yes and exposing more of myself than I am comfortable with in a way I've fought so long and hard not to.
Maybe, like me, you don't know exactly how you got where you are. Maybe life was already making you a little weary and the weariness of life and current day worries and stresses collided with events that shook your world during one summer in a way that left you reeling......that collision bringing with it memories that assaulted you with a breathtaking, gut-wrenching pain you didn't know existed. Memories that caused feelings to surface that you thought had long ago been settled....bringing forth emotions that you didn't even know were there within you, just waiting to be excavated and brought to the surface. And well-meaning people look at you curiously and ask what's wrong & those who know a little tell you not to lose your faith and to pray and to give it to the Lord......and you look at them and tell them you'll be fine, that you're just going through a stressful time. You smile and say "thank you" and you want to get them to see that you haven't lost your faith at all. That you have been praying. Not the long, intense, deep and eloquent prayers that used to come easily, but the broken, fragmented cries of the heart, the constant wonderings and ponderings and pleas, the praying you pray from your soul all day long without ceasing, broken fragments and uneloquent at times, but constant all the same. You want them to understand that you haven't lost your faith......that it is clinging to your faith that is all that is getting you through. Maybe you've started wondering if something is wrong with you, if you've done something wrong and there's something you need to make right with the Lord and then it will all go away. And you search your heart, each and every part, looking for what it could be.....and you feel so very confused and alone. Maybe you need to know that you're not alone, that you're not the only one who has ever felt this way......and that there's nothing wrong with your faith. That you can have a rock-solid, unwavering faith and still feel the way you do.....but it's just what you're walking through. And what you're walking through is not who you are. I have a precious friend that has reminded me of that more than once. (Thank you).
Maybe it's time for me to stop fighting, stop arguing and reasoning with the Lord and pushing it all away when He's obviously not wanting me to yet. Maybe it's time to allow myself the right to feel the pain that I feel and stop telling myself I don't have a right to it because my story is not as dramatic and traumatic as some. To allow myself the right to cry and feel it and stop using my genuine and overwhelming thankfulness for what He has done for me, for what could have been but wasn't because He spared me, as justification for my conviction that I don't have a right to feel this way, don't have a right to the level of hurt that I feel. Maybe it's time for me to tell my story in the way that I know best....to write....because pushing it away isn't working very well and I've got to do something with these thoughts and feelings that plague me.
Maybe, just maybe, there's healing in the telling, and the hope of healing is enough to make me surrender. I don't understand, but......
I'm ready to let Him have His way.
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