Dropped Max off at football practice this morning. (beware — gushing Mom ahead…)
Can’t begin to tell you how proud of am of this kid. He’s set his alarm every morning this summer. I’m tired from just running him around his busy schedule! Holding on to these next four years with both hands. God, I love him. And these past 14 years have flown, just FLOWN by. I can’t imagine how absurdly insane these next four will speed past… I also can’t imagine not seeing his precious face every single day. He shrugs it off, “Mom, it’s not like I can’t Skype you in college…” same.thing.
And I don’t want to get lost in all this busy, his busy, our busy, just plain life busy. But it kind of just happens, doesn’t it? Despite our best intentions to be present. It’s like this inevitable suck of our attention — time’s busy nothings and everythings… Just staring at him across from me in the car and wondering “how the hell did we get to here?” Till I’m jolted by his deeper than deep voice — “Mom, you’re doing it again…” Right, there’s no crying on the way to football practice…
And I think of a family that is laying their boy to rest today in our little town. Holding them so close in prayer. As I can’t imagine their pain, and when I do — it swallows me whole. Completely guts me. NO momma should ever, just ever… and I can’t. I can’t breathe, so I just pray some more. And I count these moments cherished, blessed. Because we always think we have this thing called time, don’t we? And we lament the moments we have not yet had that will go by too fast like we already have them saved up in some future arbitrary bank… so maybe the key is to enjoy the seconds. And not assume we have the luxury of stored time at all — a future of “then” moments… Prayers for this family for whom death cut time all too short. Our hearts break for you. ❤
And in all these thoughts and tears I grab my coffee and my Bible and find some solace in the quiet resting place of the morning. Just the din of the neighborhood kids playing outside. It’s been a summer. And as someone who tries desperately to see the good or some sort of lesson or opportunity for growth in everything, we’ll just say for this family and so many of our beloved friends — we’ve all done lots of stretching…
So opening my Bible and sighing I just prayed upon everything, so selfishly, that God could PLEASE speak to my heart. I didn’t want to be that “Encourage me! Encourage me!!!!” needy daughter to my Lord — again — but there I was — Dear Jesus, I need salve for this soul — and like NOW would be ever so nice. And I was prepared to sit there and read all morning if that’s what it took…
And there it was, in a rather unlikely place — as I’m going through the Old Testament again — Deuteronomy … the second law…
“The Lord our God said to us at Horeb, ‘You have stayed long enough at this mountain.” Deuteronomy 1:6
Yep, that’s it guys. I broke. Cried. It all came out.
And of course, there is context with the Israelites walking through the desert and so on and so forth. But this verse spoke to me about transition. Or the need for it. And perhaps, sometimes, our fear of that necessary change. So we become stagnate. We become stuck in familiar patterns, whether they be thought ones or physical ones or both. We get stuck on mountains. High ones. And sometimes it’s scary to come down from such high places.
You have stayed long enough on this mountain. You’ve done your time. You’ve learned what you’ve needed to learn. You’ve struggled, you’ve had it out, you’ve wrestled all.the.things. Now move. It’s time to take hold of my promises. It’s time to TRUST that they are true. It’s time to KNOW and BELIEVE that good things are waiting for you. Go get them. Go to the good things! “Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.” (Deuteronomy 1:21c)
And not only do we ‘need not be afraid’, but we don’t have to have it all figured out. The older I get, the more I realize this. God is a God of order, not disorder — but he’s not expecting us to organize it all and make it all right. People are complicated. Life is a giant mess. And so often times, we take that mess on when it doesn’t need to be ours and it’s not meant for us to carry — we more than likely have to deal with it, yes, but we can pray on it, make boundaries, and give it to God and he will fight for us (faith, yes?). Walk down that mountain and throw a few things out of that backpack you’re carrying — heck, throw the backpack off the mountain altogether. He will fight for you. And he’s got good things in store for us!
“Then I said to you, ‘Do not be terrified; do not be afraid of them. The Lord your God, who is going before you, will fight for you, as he did for you in Egypt, before your very eyes, and in the desert.” Deuteronomy 1:29,30
Throw the heaviness off the mountain as you go. You are no longer tethered to it. And that is really the gorgeousness of God’s grace, isn’t it? He lifts our burdens while he carries us.
I can’t solve all of life’s problems. I’d really, really LIKE too (being the problem solver, type A that I am 😉 ) — but I can’t. Not mine, not my family’s, and not my friends. I can’t make people understand me who don’t really want to — because they would rather tell me who I am, what I’m really thinking, and what I’m really feeling — instead of just listening. And I don’t have to try to figure out people for whom reality isn’t consistent — the truth of events and time ebbs and flows for what works for them and feels right for a given situation. It’s relative to their perception. What is sometimes is and then sometimes they can decide that it isn’t. It’s maddening. And I can be hurt and frustrated and sit in that, or I can realize none of this has anything to do with me. I can see the long history of the none of this having to do with me. The insanity and crazy that has caused. The constant forgiving and giving on my part. The longing to be understood, to be validated. And realizing that my worth has nothing to do with that mess. With their mess. And I can choose to not be a part of it. That is their journey. That is their walk. And I can forgive and love some more. Because so much has been given to me. And I can chose to see love for exactly what it is, and to embrace what I am meant for. And all the holiness, grace, and utter humility that comes from that existence and purpose — so much humility 🙂 . And it certainly doesn’t entail constantly fighting for the definition or validity of mine. ❤
I can rest. I can move freely. I don’t have to be afraid of falling. “You have stayed long enough at this mountain…” It’s time for a different view. With easier air to breathe. It’s time to move on. I don’t have to be afraid of shining his light…
Love you guys.
Praying for all of us.
Much peace as we hold onto promise.
“To let go is to lose your foothold temporarily. Not to let go is to lose your foothold forever.” Soren Kierkegaard