Sunday, July 11, 2010

Redemption

I have no idea how 4 months have gone by without any updates to this blog.  I have had a post permeating in my mind for days, and sitting in church this morning I knew I had to sit down and write today.  Not only to share our lives with you, but also for my own processing.
We have had a rough past few months.  Bobby lost his job due to bad economy in May.  Our hearts were broken for our dear friends that B worked for/with and also sent us to our knees seeking direction.  The first month and a half was ripe with hope.  Tons of job leads poured in, daily even.  We pursued each that seemed to be a possible fit for Bobby but not finding one that led anywhere.  One of Bobby's subcontractors offered him a job, knowing it would be temporary, but also giving us some income, which was such a blessing.  We ended up putting a for sale by owner sign in our yard, thinking it would take forever to sell, and ended up selling it in three days.  Such a God thing.  But it also sent me into a panic.  I have been packing and purging and organizing almost daily.  We close on July 21st but will try to be moved out by a week from today.
Now to the personal.
I will tell you, this has been literally the hardest season I have ever walked through.  I was trying to pin point this weekend why that was....and I realized several things.
I am such a nester.  I have been even since college, when that is not as important to some, always wanting a "home" ...one that smelled great, was uncluttered, had great food ready and soft music playing.  It is a huge part of who I am, part of my personality.  Now I am also in a season where home is where I work as well.  I spend the vast majority of my time at home, and not having a place to nest is really, really hard on my heart.
I also have felt so far from God.  Throughout other dark, hard seasons in my life, I have always felt God so much nearer.  His peace and joy always flooded my heart and mind and I KNEW it was supernatural for me to feel those things in times such as those.  But this time has been so different.  I feel so disconnected.  I feel nothing.  But after some intense processing, I know God hasn't moved.  He doesn't change.  We do.  We move.  We pull away.  And I have been suffering from intense Elijah syndrome.  For those who don't know that story, Elijah was a prophet in the Old Testament.  He literally had the blessing to see some of the most intense miracles of all times.  And just following one of those, he fled, fearing his life because Jezebel, the King's evil wife pursued him and wanted him dead.  And after he finally stopped running, God asked him what he was doing there.  And Elijah replied, "I have been very zealous for the LORD God Almighty. The Israelites have rejected your covenant, broken down your altars, and put your prophets to death with the sword. I am the only one left, and now they are trying to kill me too."  This has always seemed so comical to me.  Such victim mentality.  Here was a prophet, who had been used mightily of God and had a front row seat to see His power and might displayed, and yet he was fearing a mere human.  Furthermore here he was allowing his pain, fear and discouragement isolate him and make him feel like he was the only one feeling these things.  The only one left.  Doesn't that happen so easily?  We get knee deep in the muck of life and the second we take our eyes off the King of Kings and His power, we begin thinking we have it so rough.  That we are the only ones with it rough.  That there is no hope.  That is where I have rested these past few weeks.
And even more sadly to me, I have realized how much trust I have placed in the trappings of this world.  My home.   My stuff.  My comforts.  Bobby's salary.  Identity through a job. "When moths and rust and thieves and such will soon enough destroy."  And I know, I mean I KNOW, these things are of NO significance.  And I am so so sad that I was holding on so tightly that God had to gently pry them loose. What a fool I am.
But I am resolved.  I have absolutely no doubt that there is purpose in this.  Even if it was the realization of the above things in my heart and life.  They matter so much more than my comfort.
And finally, I think the ultimate purpose in this is a redemption story.  I truly believe there is nothing, I mean nothing, that encourages fragile humans more than stories of redemption.  Real, messy, imperfect stories of real, messy, imperfect people being redeemed.  Beauty from ashes.  And believe me, we have a pretty messy story, all being woven into beauty as we speak.  We have had a hard marriage, one in which often left us both gripping white knuckled as our relationship seemed to spin out of control.  We have tasted the fear, despair and heartache of infertility.  We have made incredible mistakes as parents.  Yet, in all of it, we see God redeeming the broken places.  And I believe with all my heart this season is just a continuation of that story.  And perhaps, preparing our path for this next chapter.  I simply cannot wait to see what He has in store.  He promises to do immeasurably more than we could ask or imagine.  He promises plans to prosper and not to harm, plans for a hope and a future.  He is so so good.  And as I have said before, never, ever, ever wastes pain.  Gosh, I am so thankful for that.  So, so thankful.  So in the meantime, we are holding tight to His promises, waiting...

19 comments:

Amber said...

Steph, thank you so much. Those are words I haven't been able to piece together and I thank you for using your gift to write to spread encouragement to me in this season. Love you!!!

'The H Family' said...

Such a great post!! So 'coincidental' (or totally a God thing :) but our entire Bible study this last week was on this exact passage concerning Elijah, depression, and the victim mentality. I'll copy them and mail them to you...so, so good!! I love you to death and I know this has been such a hard time...still praying!!

Becky Young said...

You have a gift, I hope you know that. A way with words and transparency. It is so attractive. I will continue to pray for your family.

Jeremy and Melanie said...

love you and have wondered about and prayed for you often! We need to see each other sometime!

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kansasrose said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
kansasrose said...

I love your blog! Blessings to you on your new home, and life in the country! My hub and I built our home years ago on several acres, raised our kids, and I've never looked back! It will be beautiful!

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