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It's interesting to look at your life, past to present, and think: "It has all led up to this...." And then wonder where it will lead to next.

Monday, November 14, 2011

When you get what you asked for... and then some.

I have been a little quiet here recently. It's hard to write publicly when you feel so vulnerable.

You know those times when you think, Wow. This is what it feels like to be humbled. And you think, Thank you for humbling me, God. Please don't do it again. But then you continue your never ending plea, Change me!

And He does.

Humility is good. Change is good. You know these things and yet it doesn't change the fact that being humbled hurts. Changing sucks.

In order to be humbled you must see yourself for who you are. I don't know about you, but for me that isn't usually a very pleasant experience. In order to change, all you know--the "comfortable", the "reliable"--all seems to be ripped away. Replaced by something foreign. Something you can't always grasp right away. It hurts.

Know that if you ask God to change you. To humble you. He will.

When you say, I can't do this on my own! I won't change if it's up to me! You do it!

He will.

And it won't be pretty.

I am in pain. Every ounce of me hurts. I feel torn. It feels unnatural. There should be medication for this kind of torture. I am anxious. Angry. Often times depressed. Occasionally on the brink of hopelessness.

And then I see it. A glimpse of what is being taught. What is being changed. Lies that are being ripped away. Truth that is replacing it.

I constantly question God. I doubt and pray for trust. I used to feel guilty for this. Parts of me still do. But those are some of the lies that are being stripped away. Is God not strong enough to handle my doubt? Not strong enough to teach me to trust? As though Him teaching me is second rate compared to me learning it on my own (as if that's an option or even makes sense!). That is what the enemy would have us believe. That it is up to us. That it is our job to learn to trust. Our job to trust and never doubt.

I cry out to God, Why is this so hard?? There must be an easier way! But what I am really saying is, I feel weak this way. I don't want to feel weak. Incapable. Helpless. I don't want to feel what I am.

And He says, Trust me.

And I say, But it's so hard to let go! I can't be a good person this way! I can't be a good mother! A good wife! Friend, sister, daughter... I am no good this way!

And He reminds me, I am good.

He reminds me that He didn't call me to be a "good person". A "good mother". A "good wife". Or anything else. He called me to follow Him. The decision that at the time I thought was the easiest I ever made.

Don't you say your burden is easy, your yoke is light? I question. So why is this so flippin' hard??

And then I realize what's so hard. Not so much what He's asking of me. But letting go of what I ask of me. What the world asks of me. I always ask God to change me. Change me against my will! Because I know my will is not really to be changed. But I never realized how ridiculously tight I've been holding onto the world. To lies. My sweet and even in-the-name-of-God lies.

In all He speaks to me, the words that resound each time I want to give up, are: Trust me.

And I realize that that is exactly what He is teaching me to do.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Crazy Stupid Anger

"It's all about hiding the crazy and pretending your the most confident girl in the room..." - Carla (Scrubs)

This has kind of been my mantra the last few weeks. Yes, from Scrubs. Don't judge. I've been a little wacky lately ("lately" haha... so funny), and it's taken a lot of effort to keep myself composed, or even just not-completely-crazy. I have failed miserably this last week.

I have struggled with anger for what feels like my whole life. Some of my first memories are of me screaming into pillows (or at my siblings...), punching walls, pulling my hair, basically being really, really angry. I threw toddler-like tantrums up until I was about 9 or 10 years old (and even a few others up to this day). It wasn't that I didn't know how to healthily express my anger, I understood the difference between the healthy and unhealthy ways to express myself. It was that I had so much anger, it was just too much to control. As I got older I found ways to handle it a little better. I danced. I wrote. I ran. I still screamed into my pillow. I still found myself getting really angry about a lot of things. My anger would consume me. I begged God to change me. Why?! I would curse and scream. I have always blamed Satan for my anger. I have blamed God for allowing Satan to control me with anger. Blamed him for allowing my anger. I can't change myself! Why do you let me be this way? Just force me to change! Make me someone else! Every time I thought I had over come my anger, it would spring back up and remind me how little I had really changed. I often worry I am going to completely mess my kids up. How can I raise normal, functional adults, when I am so crazy?? I know God can overcome and even use my weaknesses, but c'mon, this crazy girl has gotta be a little tough even for Him...

Nothing makes me more angry than injustice. Greed. Thoughtless consumerism and all the havoc it wreaks on our world. Power-hunger. Manipulation. Both in large and small forms. The thing that really gets to me: how guilty I am of these things. How easy it is to forget, or to push aside reality and live happily in denial. I get really angry. It consumes me. It effects every part of my life. I can't not talk about it. And if you know me, you know I can get pretty "passionate" in "discussing" these things (aka, me talking really loud, a lot, about a lot of stuff--I'm kind of a verbal processor). I have been told that I shouldn't read the news--basically because it affects me. I have been told I shouldn't feel as strongly as I do, that I need to distance myself from the pain and injustice of the world so I don't get so upset. So angry.

For the most part I agree. I don't like being angry. I don't like thinking about the hungry, dying, and desperate while I am trying to enjoy my comfy, lower-middle class, American life. I can't change it, so why let it consume me. Right? I have always ended those thoughts with a question mark. Should I not feel what I feel as passionately as I feel about these things?

This morning while rocking my sweet and innocent baby to sleep, I watched his eyes drift close, and wished each baby could rest as easily as he does. As I rocked and sang, I felt God speak. You know those moments when something just sits itself into your chest and you know God is there? It's not huge, moving, thunder, and shaking. It's quiet. Almost unnoticeable if you aren't quiet. I actually had a really good morning. I wasn't thinking about anger. I was just appreciating the quiet when I felt this odd realization. Maybe God gave me my anger. Not that I always use it correctly, but maybe He has been teaching me how to use it. Maybe He will use it. I wouldn't call my anger righteous. But perhaps my unrest, anger, passion, and discontentment are not all for nothing? After all, if I were simply happy and content with my lot, would I ever seek anything else? Would I long for Christ's return as strongly as I do? Would I want change so badly that I'd get off my butt and actually do something? Would I pray as earnestly as I have during these times? Cry out to God until my eyes and heart feel they had no more to pour?

I hugged and kissed my sweet, sleeping baby and put him in his bed with confidence. Maybe your mama is all crazy. God knows what He's doing. You'll be ok.