Friday, February 25, 2011

Thoughts and Musings

I seem to be in a rough spot mentally and emotionally right now. Don't know what to call it, but it feels like a deep dark pit that an invisible hand pushes me into unexpectedly. Or like a dark cloud that is so oppressive I can literally feel the weight of it, giving "all you who are weary and heavy laden" a whole new meaning. While I've spent more time crying in the past month than I ever remember crying in the past, and while my mind is so muddled I can't make sense of anything (especially grocery shopping ... why did I buy a half gallon of buttermilk??!), and while none of this is fun and I desperately want to feel like my happy self again, God keeps telling me over and over through one source after another that He does not waste trials and pain. That He is sovereign. That He has a purpose for my good in this. Do I see the good? Honestly, not yet. I feel like a caterpillar wrapped so tightly in a cocoon, my vision is blurred by brown silk. I can't see a new me forming. I can't see God gently shaping my wings, infusing them with beautiful colors, leaving His fingerprints as He works. But I have to trust that the discomfort has an ultimate purpose. To think that suffering is wasted leaves one utterly hopeless.

I've been reading MaryBeth Chapman's book Choosing to SEE. She has become one of my heros, and I've decided that when I get to Heaven, I'm going to host a tea party for all these godly women whom I "know" from afar so we can become kindred spirits over vanilla chai (because there will be vanilla chai in Heaven! :-) While I don't even pretend to identify with the road her family has walked, I could relate to so much of what she wrote. Thought I would share some passages from her book that really spoke to me as well as some other quotes that have ministered to this muddled mind of late.

May this be your experience; may you feel that the Hand which inflicts the wound supplies the balm, and that He who has emptied your heart has filled the void with Himself.
~James Hudson Taylor

In the winter of our grieving and the frozen mourning of my plans that will never be and my dreams that have died - the reality is this: God's warm breath is on the move. New life is budding ... and often where I expected it the least, like right inside me.
~MaryBeth Chapman "Choosing to SEE"

I think I am realizing something through all the craziness. Yes, God wants my quiet, and yes, God wants me to rest and hear Him and learn from Him. But ... I realized that if I always think that I am going to finally get that place where I am constantly trying to get -- like in a quiet, picked-up house -- then I'm wrong.
I need to choose to SEE Christ in every birthday party I drive to, every piano lesson that gets taught, every ballet tutu that gets twirled. God is with me. He isn't waiting until I die for me to be with Him. He isn't waiting until BB season is over or until I get completely healthy. He SEES me now. He is with me now. I know this is a simple realization, but it was big good news to me.
~MaryBeth Chapman "Choosing to SEE"

Often when we thrill to the realization of a call from God, we picture going from our faces to our feet as He increasingly elevates our position. To accomplish our call, we must be humbled far more than exalted, though God certainly lifts up His faithful servant in due time.
~Beth Moore "Esther: It's Tough Being a Woman"

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