She doesn’t want to like him. She thinks she’s past it, but then she is with him again. She feels sad every time she’s sees him because she wants to be with someone like him. He’s such a godly man. And she’s been so lonely for so long.
He didn’t see this coming. To call it a kick to the gut would not quite capture the dissappointment. In fact, ‘dissappointment’ wasn’t the right word. Months of planning and anticipation met with a heavy thud as he opened the letter.
She doesn’t know how it got this far. All she knows is that she feels hopeless and trapped. She knows that people look at her with disgust because she looks at herself that way. This was not how she invisioned her life. But she is not sure how to really live again.
The theme is clear and ubiquitous. We are surrounded by loneliness, sin wounds, hopelesness, and unmet longings that leave a dull ache in your chest if you’re lucky. But most days it feels like a 1000 lb weight that you carry around. The question I hear so often, most because I ask it every day is “Will life ever change? Is this all there is? Will I hurt in this way for the rest of my life?” Sometimes I just scream at God, “ENOUGH! ARE YOU KIDDING ME!? DON’T YOU CARE THAT THIS IS KILLING ME?!” And when I am done yelling, He stands there patiently, still God.
Santuary is praying through the lent season. This morning, we prayed for our dependancy to be obvious and that it would lead us to Jesus. Dependancy is all around me today, in my own life and in the lives of those I adore. The last 6 months have been one lesson after another in the area of dependancy. But not just dependancy for financial provision and purpose. I have seen my deep need for Jesus to change my heart. It is self-involved and remarkably prideful. I spend more time grumbling in my heart when people don’t give me the worship that I obviously deserve. I want to steal worship from God. I live under His graciousness, His slowness to anger, His abundant love and goodness, and then refuse to extend it to others. I am undone. I am so dependant on Him. I can’t even acknowledge my dependancy without the Holy Spirit revealing it to me. And He meets me when I stop demanding my own worship and just come to Him with my pain and anger, which is so often directed at Him.
I think that we miss the point when we wonder why He doens’t seem to address our individual pain. He allows the pain so that we are dependant on Him. His mercy makes us dependant. In those moments we have two choices; to figure out how to defend/heal/protect ourselves or to turn our eyes to the Truth that we live under. He has been and will always be good. Everything that happens to us is from His hand of mercy. Then we must surrender to our dependacy on the Spirit to make these truths alive and a changing force in our hearts, instead of empty cliches that leave us bitter. It doesn’t make the pain easier. It’s often doesn’t seem to make us sin less. But as the thorn twists in our side, this may be all we can muster as we lay at His feet bleeding.
Grace and Peace to your heart. May He provide for you what you don’t even know to ask for.