Authenticity. Honesty. Substance. Realness. These words keep fighting their way to the surface this morning as I struggle with my jumbled-up thoughts. I sit here really wanting to write something upbeat and encouraging for you. Something funny, maybe. Light-hearted for your Fun Friday. And maybe even throw in a cute picture of my cat.
But I just can’t seem to do that today. Well, not the fun words, anyways. Not today. Or lately, even. And besides … that would just not be very real, now would it? And isn’t real what I’m supposed to be doing here, anyways?
“Honest beauty from opposite ends of the stethoscope.”
Remember? That’s my purpose here.
So here’s some honesty for you: I’m realizing that I’ve become quite the pain in the rear end.
I know … any of you who actually know me are probably smirking because I’m just now figuring this out. But believe me, my loves … it’s gotten much worse on the inside lately than what you’ve ever enjoyed about me on the outside.
The problem is that I simply cannot figure out what God is doing with me. I just can’t.
And the funny thing is, I know that I shouldn’t even be trying to. God’s ways are far too mysterious for us to ever grasp – I know this. Yet somehow my mind keeps seriously craving this understanding.
And the even funnier thing is, the longer I walk with God, the worse this restlessness seems to be getting. Weird. And actually not funny at all.
Honestly. It’s not.
When our kids were born, I totally got what I was supposed to be doing. From the moment of birth, it was my job to love them enough to teach them absolutely everything. Most importantly about the love of God.
My sole purpose in motherhood was to make sure that one day they would be equipped to walk this earth as thoroughly-loved, faith-sustained, fully-functional adults. The kind of people who would help brighten this ridiculously darkened world. That was my job and it was never anything but crystal clear to me.
It was after that where things got so mucked up in this pea brain of mine. That was when everything became so complicated. And that was when this craving to understand actually began.
“Go change everything you’ve ever known as normal, Debi. I want you to become a nurse. Yes, at age fifty.”
Wow. Okay, God, if that’s what you want me to do.
“After you’ve buried your heart and soul into this extremely difficult calling … know you’ll be doing all this while you’re struggling with your own brand-new illness, as well.”
Well, how am I supposed to do that???
Okay, God. No problem. I’m good at that. My faith is “strong like ox”.
“Really, Debi? Are you so sure? Let’s find out ….”
And here we sit today.
You and me.
I’m the hard-headed, perpetually-questioning pain in the rear end who’s been repeatedly humbled over and over again for the last five years into realizing just how small my faith actually is.
Plus, I’m also the one who has been mysteriously called to lay this not-so-pretty tangle of honesty out not only before our great God, but also before you beautiful people, as well.
“Share what I’m teaching you, Debi. Be open. Honest.”
Well, talk about humbling. And not at all funny. Even on a Friday.
So, please … let my honesty ask your honesty something: Have you ever had moments where you feel like you’re being smacked around like a toy mouse? And it almost feels like maybe God is up there just having some fun with you? Batting you around to see just how much you can take?
Well, my honesty would have to admit that, yes … I sure have had those moments. Recently.
And, don’t worry – I’m well aware of how twisted and sinful those thoughts are. They’re awful, actually. Absolutely not true and absolutely contradictory to the character of our magnificent God.
I know this.
Yet this “honesty” of mine keeps bubbling to the surface. And God and I keep discussing this. Over and over again. And I keep trying to pray it away.
And it works for a while.
Yet with each and every new bump in my pothole-laden journey, my beautiful rug of coping is once again snatched right out from beneath me, and these ugly thoughts return.
And they turn me right back into that same overly-honest, perpetually-questioning, trying-to-figure-out-exactly-how-the-heck-to-proceed-forward-from-here pain in the rear end all over again.
So, this has been my week. And it’s been fun. For everybody.
But this morning, I went out for a walk and actually remembered another walk I took about a year ago. I was in a lot of physical pain that day as I have also been for the past few. I was also struggling with that same deep, ugly weariness … again just like now.
I remember, though, that through every achey step it took for me to make it around the entire block that day … I kept willing myself to “just keep moving, Debi”. Over and over again. I even came home and wrote about the experience.
Well, when I got home from my walk this morning, I reread that post and it encouraged me so much. I’ve included it here for you today in case you need some lifting yourself.
It helped remind me that I just need to keep moving. Not only physically, but in my heart, as well. Just keep moving. Pressing forward. Doing the next thing. God’s thing. Whatever that may be. Just keep doing it.
Until He reveals what’s next.
That’s called walking in faith, people. And it’s absolutely the simplest thing in the world to do. Well, it should be, anyways. Just trust. But, as I’ve learned through my own journey, it’s also the most complicated, as well.
I’m learning, though, that I don’t need to beat myself up for my honest thoughts, my moments of doubt. I will never be able to think perfect thoughts. None of us will. Not on this side of Glory, anyways. The sin inside us simply will not allow it.
God knows this and is absolutely big enough to handle our questions, my friends. And He’s forgiving enough to answer them over and over again. It’s all part of our lifelong walk towards reflecting more the image of Jesus. This sanctification is a process, my friends. A long and exhaustingly humbling one.
All we can do is be honest with God – He knows what we’re thinking anyways, right? But we need to confess our dark thoughts, and then lay them firmly at His feet. Even if it’s over and over again. He then decides what to do with them from there.
Today He compelled me to sit down and share mine with you. Honestly. I sure hope it helps encourage you somehow. Because it sure has helped me.
Thanks so much for growing with me. ❤
“… let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith.” (Hebrews 12:1-2a)
“The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.” (Deuteronomy 31:8)
“Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.” (Matthew 17:20)