5 weeks, 6 days… again 

If you’re going to read this (and anything else I write), please read it thoroughly without typing a response only halfway through. This is my heart and if you’re going to respond, you should at least hear what I actually have to say (not just what you might presume I’d say). 

Twice in 2 weeks. Once is torture, but twice in 2 weeks. I have so much to say on this. This is just one small piece of it. 

Oh, my. I have hurt and worried, and wondered and asked, and lamented and burned inside with this incredible confusion and grief. Once was enough, but over and over and over again with this roller coaster that had the doctors puzzled was too much. When they don’t know, life gets a lot scarier. I’ve been trapped in an isolated hell I’d wish to see sentenced on no one. 

I have felt betrayed, tortured, beaten and (as of yesterday, finally) hopeless.  Never faithless. Just at the end of what strength I had. I asked my LEO to put me in an institution where I might  be medicated to the point of oblivious bliss. Instead, he put me to bed and later fed me carbs. Equally effective and cheaper.

I have to tell you, the phrase “Just give it to God” was almost painful during this journey. My immediate thought, as I tried to politely thank the well meaning advisor, was, “You think I haven’t prayed? I have spent more time in prayer the past 2 weeks than I have in 29 years.  Just give it to God? Honey, I slapped a bow on it and shipped it out special delivery. You know what? It kept showing back up on my doorstep, unwrapped and grinning  back at me.”

Tonight that phrase has latched to my back like a rabid monkey. Chewing on my neck and brain until I finally clawed it off to stare it in the glazed eye.  

What do you want? This phrase that Christians serve on a ready-made platter? A regular in the Christian rolodex.  What is it you want me to know? Where are you rooted, and why are you the Kudzu of comfort phrases?

So, I went digging. Ruthlessly ready to shred this colloquial serving to pieces and spread its ashes in an unknown place, never to be heard again. Ready to file it in my subconscious to be censored every time it lit upon my ears. “Just give it to God.” This flippant, piercing, seemingly empty calorie sentence.

Rabid monkey of a phrase. 

WHAT IS IT?! 

The Bible verses that I believe have poured the foundation of this statement are as follows:

“Cast your cares on the LORD and he will sustain you; he will never let the righteous fall” (Psalm 55:22), & “Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you” (1 Peter 5:7).

Ok, but that still doesn’t clarify what I’m supposed to do.  So easier said than done. What does that even entail? 

Well, this. I think this is what we are actually saying.

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths” (Proverbs 3:5-6)

Give it to God means to be strengthened by His promises. Casting my cares on Him means to let His wind direct my sails.

Maybe I kept writing my own address on that package and not God’s? A big “return to sender” in my own stamp?

But why? What purpose for my good could this possibly serve? How is God glorified in this? I’ve had my heart ripped out, and explored the darkest parts of my inner being. What good can come of that? I kept telling Chris there had to be something. That every life is created fearfully and wonderfully. That He knows us in the womb and that isn’t something I believe God takes lightly. He certainly doesn’t see us as disposable. Every heartbeat matters. I don’t believe God *does* things to us, but He’s definitely not going to let it go to waste.

Why?

In Romans, I finally found a sense of peace. Not a complete answer, but peace.

“Knowing that tribulation produces perseverance; and perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.” (Romans 5:3-5)

“Give it to God” means to grow closer to Him and His promises. Find strength in His strength. Be free in His direction. All of those concepts could take a novel in themselves to clarify, but it’s more thorough than the four words we so easily hand out. My weary search for some sort of understanding in this dark place came from Romans. That doesn’t mean I’m not sad, or worn, just coming to terms with it all. I think we have to be careful not to discount people’s experiences by blanketing them with comfortable phrases. Hurting hearts need a little deeper sowing of hope. Not tossed like a wildflower, but cultivated as an orchard.

I don’t believe I’m done writing on this topic. This entire piece is certainly unfinished.  It’s all so fresh that I’ve not completely gained my entire perspective. I never know what I actually think until I write it down. This is just my heart tonight.

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1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Trackback: Saying Goodbye Again. | Sparrows and Dandelions

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