Thursday, April 4, 2013

In The Middle Of The Storm

After all that mess and what have you, I found myself flopping into yet another pit of despair. It was only a brief visit mind you, but enough for me to notice that the decorating hadn't changed much.

It has been beyond freaky how all this junk has been sort of a repeat and to have it twice in a year did not help matters. I think that was triggering the swan dive off the cliffs of insanity, but since I've been there before and nothing was new, I pulled myself together and quickly exit - stage left.

Some of that had to do with the new bible study I'm doing. I had just picked up Jennifer Rothschild: Missing Pieces. Right off the bat she was talking about in Mark where Jesus said they were going to go to the other side and then fell asleep as a huge storm hit the boat and everyone panicked to the point of accusing Jesus of not caring.

I perked up. Big storm, epic panic, and Jesus sound asleep - yep, could totally relate. 

While I'm sure none of you would freak out and pull the whole, "God, don't you flipping care?!?" I, however, seem to pull that card all.the.time. Such a proud moment for me.

Jennifer, I say that like we're BFFs, pointed out the differences of accusing verses inquiring. Inquiring seeks, accusing criticizes; inquiring asks, accusing demands etc. Well, snap! Actually, I said something else but why go there? Way to start this off with an uppercut, Mrs. Rothschild.

Here's the thing, I struggle to trust God. I have so many experiences where I stepped out in faith and went ker-splat! I dusted myself off and tried again, only to have a bigger splat than before. The hard ones are when I was told, and I obeyed, and it still ended in epic failure. Those are the ones that aren't easy to get over. You can give God understanding if you missed it and blew it, but when you know that you know that you did what you were told to do and things still shattered into a million pieces? I, myself, tend to point an accusing finger at the Almighty. I'm beyond inquiring - my hurt is demanding. Accusing.

Not the brightest thing to do but it seems to be something I've done....repeatedly as I have a lot of hurt. And that stung knowing I was using that hurt to justify accusing.

While God hasn't fried me like a french fry, or pulled away from me in those demanding moments, I certainly haven't gotten the answers I'm in desperate need for either. There is always that reassurance that He is there, He does care, and He is fair. I'm still in a rock, paper, scissors battle with Him over that last one. Because my brain has a hard time understanding how all this crap can be fair or for my good. I understand seasons but we're talking y-e-a-r-s.

What is it about numbers on the calender that can make us so crazy? Or maybe that's just me. I honestly don't know.

I didn't think I had issues with numbers until my 15th anniversary showed up. It seemed every ounce of grace I had for my husband instantly vanished like vapor on a hot day. I had no idea why it was there one day and loooong gone the very next. And it didn't look like it was coming back anytime soon. I think I had it in my head that by that many years of marriage, we should have our act squared away and clearly, we didn't. 

It's like you think when you're 30 you will know everything and have accomplished everything there is to accomplish. That thought flies right out the window on your 30th birthday. And you realize you still don't have it all figured out. Not even close.

Jennifer, my pretend BFF, was saying how the disciples immediately went to worse case scenario. "Lord, don't you care that we're going to die?" It didn't say they were going to die but that's what they felt was going to happen. Oh, those feelings! They have gotten me into more trouble than what I really want to admit. I've been called a Negative Nelly many times, so that whole worse case scenario? I can bring it!! It's like that's the one thing I excel at....besides sarcasm.

Many times I've found myself flopped on the floor, totally exhausted after accusing God of not caring about the latest worse case scenario I was sure that was going to be thrust upon us. In my defense, I've gone through a lot of unusual stuff and since some of what I was freaked out about did happen, it's sort of made me both paranoid and cynical. I have repeatedly said, "this doesn't happen to normal people, Lord!"

I'm not sure if I should take comfort in the fact that He agreed with me or be a bit concern. Still a toss up.

She closed off that day with when it seems like God is asleep in the middle of the situation, to rest in the fact He said they were going to the other side. That God will get you to the other side of the storm. While I'm still sort of feeling shipwrecked and floating in the water, some Pollyanna out there will say, "yes, but you're hanging onto that driftwood and it's keeping you from drowning."

I hope she paddles far away from me or it's going to get ugly here real quick. Might have to beat her half to death with that driftwood.....twice.

I'll let you figure that one out.

But I can say that we are in a better place. The house is working out better then what I first thought and it has a dishwasher! Thank you, Jesus! Amen! Not once have I heard a gunshot, and I don't have to stand guard at the van while the guys unload the groceries.

It's just hard to understand the why as we're going through it. It's hard to hear God give us cryptic assurances that "It's coming" and "Hang in there" when all we feel is spent, confused, and not sure what to do next. Hang on to what? Hope? Because mine left a long time ago.

But....

There are days when I do get it. This is a fight. And if your life is just a bowl of flowers and happy songs - you might want to paddle away from me because I still have some driftwood.

One thing about living with guys - you watch a lot of war/combat movies. All of them talk about battle. The bible studies we've done with the guys have all talked about being in a war between good and evil. I've heard a lot of battle talks. A lot.

I love the movie Facing The Giants. When we were moving, we all hit the wall of exhaustion but there was still a lot to do. I grabbed the guys, and with a voice beyond shot and barely above a whisper, I reminded all of us about the part where everyone was tired but the guy yelled out Stone Wall! We had been talking about being unstoppable and I told them now was the time to dig deep and be an unstoppable force. That no matter how hard this gets, we were going to be a stone wall that was not going to crumble!

You should have seen my crazy self. Every time I walked by the guys I was scream whispering, "Stone wall!", "Unstoppable!", "Strong tower!" anything I could think of to keep us motivated to keep going. Every word I tried to say that day felt like a hot poker was shoved in my throat. Every word of encouragement I was trying to give was causing me physical pain. In my feverish state, I kept saying I was like Debra of the Old Testament and we were in battle and we were on the winning side. You would not believe all the crazy bad things that kept happening one right after another. I can't even begin to list it all.

It was like we were in a boxing ring. We would throw a punch - the enemy would throw a punch. Back and forth for the whole weekend. We were duking it out. You see those boxers that are bloody, puffy, and exhausted taking blow after blow and you wonder how can they endure? I watched all of us dig deep and pressed on through sickness and pain, bloody noses, weird circumstances and numerous outbursts of you got to be kidding me! and got the job done. And after all that, got to face all the goofy crap that happened with the house.

I'm still not sure who won. At the time, it felt like we were knocked out....again. But weeks later, we're still standing.

A week before the move, God reminded me of the time when we went camping and the truck broke down and how, while it wasn't fun, we had pulled together and were stronger for it. It was like that only make it in a lot worse.....and then times it by six. I don't know what God has planned on the other side but if this is training for it? I am now a bit skert.

They say what doesn't kill you makes you stronger, my cousin said I should be able to bench press a Buick by now.

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