Today is Thanksgiving. It is one in the morning (yes, I am aware that it is a crazy time to be awake!), but I feel the need to reflect on what today means. There is so much in my life to be thankful for. I know I often overlook them or take them for granted. I have amazing friends, ones I have known for years, ones for only months but feel like they have been a part of my life forever, ones I have lived with, ones I have adventured with, all of whom I love. I get to see my family today, and I am so grateful for their love and support. I look forward to the fun and blessings of our time together. I am especially grateful for my dad. Words cannot express how much the decisions he made and the sacrifices he made impacted who I am today. I am blessed by him. I am grateful for the provision in my life- my job, my car, even down to the extra money I have to spend on a delicious caramel macchiato. I am grateful for beautiful sunsets, for rain puddles, for chilly weather that makes me want to bundle up. I am grateful that God has never given up on me, and that His plans for my life are greater than I could ever ask for or imagine. I am grateful for my future family...a promise that is yet to come into fruition. I am thankful for health and joy and peace...the kind of peace that comes from trusting in God. I am so grateful for salvation, and that everyday I realize what that truly means even more. I am thankful for the little moments. The laughter that produces tears. The inside jokes. The hugs from loved ones, little or not so little. The process of developing friendships. The taste of a delicious dessert. The awkwardness of a moment. I am so grateful. So so grateful. I do not deserve all I have, but I am grateful.
Saturday, November 22, 2008
This time last year, I had a difficult time processing all the emotions I know are sitting under the surface. It had only been a year, yet it was shocking to me that a year had already passed. A year since I cried out so deeply for my mom's healing, only to know that it was her time to go. Most of the time it felt like nothing had happened at all, but then when the emotions did come, they felt like an assault on my entire being. I still find myself at times caught off guard at how painful, even physically, the process of grief is. I have known sadness and loss before, but this strikes deeper. And here I am, another year later, still processing. I have closed myself behind my door because it is what I know how to do best. The pain washes over me like a wave. Part of me is torn. I need to process this, and yet, it seems easier to distract myself so that the pain can go away. It never really does...it lingers and then assaults me when it seems most unwelcome. So, I sit in my room, trying to let the emotions of the moment release. Tomorrow is her birthday. And three weeks from now, it will be two years from the day I watched her go.
A dear friend reminded me of the footprints poem and how it talks about the times the man looked back and only saw one set of footprints. It was during those times that he had suffered the most. Jesus reminded him that it was in those times that he carried the man. It is in moments like these, when I need to be comforted but do not know how to be, that I feel Him lift me off my feet and carry me for a while. And because of that, even though I have no idea what I am doing, I know I will be okay.
Tuesday, November 11, 2008
She stares into the mirror
It's the same face she's seen a thousands times before
Beyond her eyes thoughts race
And her emotions begin to spill over
Such a wonder this woman is
All the depth behind the facade
She tries to keep it all together
But knows that one question
Could bring it all crashing down
How can one question God's existence
When someone looks into her eyes?
Each moment tells a different tale
Each day multiplies the memories
Her expressions so rich
When she explodes in laughter
Or crumbles in tears
There's a light in her eyes
That is sometimes overshadowed
But one close look can discover
How it never quite goes out
She wonders how she can look so different
In her own eyes from one day to the next
Yet nothing has really changed at all
And she questions what others can see
When she looks at them and smiles
Such a complicated woman
With a story to tell
She continues to stare in wonder
At what God has made
I feel like there is a lot going on in my heart right now, and often some of my best writing comes when I write from my heart. Yet sometimes what is going on is inexpressable or perhaps needs to wait. I feel like much of what is going on inside of me right now has an appointed time for expression, and because I am still processing, that time is not now. I am learning to fall in love with the process. The process of life. The process of love. The process of growth. The process. I usually am so busy running around trying to get from point A to point B that I miss how I got there. Or I am so eager for the end result that I lose the right focus and miss some amazing steps. I don't remember the quote exactly, but I heard on the radio once something to the effect of "If the devil can't keep you from salvation, he'll try and keep you distracted." I have been distracted...for most of my life. I believed that there was always something better than what I had, so I constantly looked for what I thought I was missing. I also got caught up in the day to day, believing that whatever was going on in the moment was more important than the bigger picture. God has recently put me in a few situations that have "forced" me to slow down a bit. And what I am finding is peace. His word over me right now is TRUST. I can't tell you how it will all unfold, but I can tell you that I am enjoying each step. And that I know God has the best intentions for each situation.