we had tried for those ten months because we had that nagging feeling that our family wasn't complete yet. we made the decision to place it in God's Hands but after almost a year with no second pink line, we figured that we were mistaken and rested in that thought and were happily content with our family of five...
only, by the time i was fully content with that decision, she was and the agenda i had already begun to craft and feel comfortable with, excited about, was suddenly out of my hands and i was stunned.
He has made a habit of doing that in my life...
maybe yours too?
i think back to that last winter there, where everything was falling apart and i had no choice but to open up clenched fists and whisper yes to what He had planned.
i remember screaming into my pillow at the God Who i thought had let me down, Who surely must be mocking my wants and wishes and dreams...
i remember driving away from what i had so desperately wanted and heading towards the big and vast empty space of Unknown.
i had never been more terrified.
i had never felt Him so near.
this past week, i feel as though every emotion i possess has been ravaged - i wrote to my sister, my friend, that all i want to do is claw out of this skin that i find myself in, to somehow escape what i have seen and what i know and how, how can all of this brokenness be possible?
the hair that hangs long over a face punched purple and green - the pain in those beautiful eyes and the smile she still manages to share. and while i ate thanksgiving dinner surrounded by warmth and beauty, she was being beaten.
the sobs i hear as i enter the restroom, a broken girl crumpled on a cold tile floor because she just found out a loved one is dying...a loved one who walked away all those years ago.
of the dark alley i found myself in, trying to open up shut gates while danger is heading right towards us - and why can't there be more light? more light for the dark places so children don't have to be scared to walk home alone?
of that young boy, bullied and mocked and made to feel less-than - of the tears he tries to brush away and hide.
and i am angry because i get to drive away. at the end of the day, i drive away to my home safe and locked with every window secure and in place. in place. and i know of children who sleep in rooms lacking this simple luxury - there is nothing between them and the cold air that has settled in for this season and as i fall asleep, there are young eyes plastered open because who knows what can slip in during the dark of the night?
it's all. so. dark.
and my agenda...
my silly agenda.
so often i think i know what's best, and i beg for what i think is best, and i fight for it and i pout over it and more often than not, i sadly get my own way...
until He allows it all to be shaken - for my heart to be shaken - for my life to be uprooted and replanted and for my eyes to be opened to what i need to let go of so that He can make use of what little i have to offer.
and i wrestle with feeling like i'm drowning in a sea of what-if's - fearing that i won't be able to manage it all with a newborn and homeschooling and going down to the mission everyday like before. and how do i maintain friendships and parenting and keeping our home a haven - let alone clean?
how do i manage the big emotions that still rise up over broken relationships? and how do my girls always seem to manage to ask the really hard questions while i make the drive from our house to the mission - questions like, why did papa die and how did papa die and do you ever think you'll see your family again, mama?
i don't know how to do it all...
and maybe that's the point.
it's that verse in the book of james that's been dancing around my head all afternoon, the one that seems to caution against agendas and that very human tendency to think that we may know best after all,
Come now, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go into such and such a town and spend a year there and trade and make a profit”—yet you do not know what tomorrow will bring. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes. Instead you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we will live and do this or that.”
(James 4:13-15 ESV)
and it's the simple and so very complicated act of letting it all go, opening up clenched fists and giving our plans, our pain, our questions, the reality of our very uncertain tomorrows over to the One Who knows what our next breath holds ~
if Jesus wills, tomorrow, i will get up and make breakfast and i will get through as many subjects as i can with my children.
if Jesus wills, tomorrow, i will love my husband well and pray for him as he faces the realities that this job holds.
if Jesus wills, tomorrow, i will laugh with my children and pray with them and prepare our hearts to love the ones who are so very unloved.
if Jesus wills, tomorrow, i will drive down and i will listen and i will wipe tears and i will be His Arms to whomever He brings my way.
if Jesus wills, tomorrow, i'll trust that He is holding all my future tomorrows and He'll lead me and show me how to be a mama to 4, a wife to one, a friend to my friends and a keeper of this home He's given to us...
because my haven and rest isn't found in these four walls...
my refuge is in Christ and Him alone.
and so, if Jesus wills, tomorrow, i'll keep letting it go...