Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Late to Lent: Days 17-18

*Today marks the one year blogiversary of A Songbird in His Court. I'm celebrating with a giveaway.  I'd love it if you joined me.

follow this journey from the beginning

Day Seventeen
Trust. It’s such a small word and such a big task. I’ve seen God show up, come through for me so many times and yet I often return that point where I have to lay down my expectations, my understanding, even my perception of the world around me and trust Him. Trust that He sees more than I do, knows more than I do and this is the crucial one, loves more than I do. He loves me more than I even love myself.  Yet He knows me better too, my strengths and weaknesses, and will stretch me further than I would. It says that He has prepared good works for me long ago. These deeds have the power to change the world, in ways large and in small. But in order to complete this quest I must walk a far more difficult road, this road that He has mapped out for me, than the one I would choose. In fact I would probably choose to simply build my own cozy hobbit hole and tend to the woes  of the world only as they happened
http://www.john-howe.com/
to cross my garden path, never venturing out, never building endurance, never gathering resources of character or experience; having a story that is uninspiring and useless to anyone in need. Having no adventures I would never tackle challenges far larger than I can face alone; never find the hidden wounded, the lost and the neglected. If I wrote my own story I would be respectably wasted. But I don’t write it. I follow not a script, but a Beautiful Author, tucking my hand into His and walking alongside Him. That is, on my good days. There are the other days when I drop His hand and stomp my feet in the dust.  Sometimes I just sit down in the middle of the road and cry. For the  road is too steep, too long and I see no curves on the horizon and I am tired and seem to be getting nowhere and so often new sights just mean new difficulties. In my anger joy flees and the foggy despair sets in, blinding and paralyzing me. I think I get angry because His plan is hard and I can’t stop thinking of the warm hobbit hole life I imagined. In those moments I can see I haven’t fully surrendered and I trust my own understanding over His heart. So what will my life journey look like if I decide to lay down my anger not only for Lent, but after? What if I continue this seeking to have my sight transformed rather than hungering to only change my views? Will I see joy and beauty even in the painful, parched or barren stretches of my path?


Day Eighteen
The start of my day again finds me quietly reading. The Holy Spirit nudges me, brightening my eyes, bolding print and I read “Thanks is what builds trust.” Yesterday comes flooding back, the echo of a melody, how often trusting God came up in what I read, what I said, what I heard and what I wrote. Especially clear is the conversation with a friend, asking how I was, knowing I had been struggling but not knowing why. As I shared in generalities the words from my heart surprise me, though I know they have been gently growing there. “I don’t understand this situation and it’s painful. But I believe that however I ended up here, through my mistake, someone else’s, or no mistake at all, God has this for me, this difficulty and this pain. He wants to do something in me here. This spot is not accidental. He is in it, He is here.” Is this trust soaked declaration a fruit of thankfulness; a result of laying down anger and picking up a journal to record beauty in the midst of my heartbreak? For I have been joining Ann in recording one thousand gifts. But contrary to my normally open nature I have been writing privately in a small journal, just for God and me. Ann writes that my memory of how God has acted assures me of what He is doing and will do. The stones I build, collected from the middle of the rushing Jordan remind me of the God who can make a bridge of dry land for me to cross the impossible into the promised. So when I find myself crouching in fear or spinning in frustration is thankfulness the way out? Or more to the point is it the way in; the way in to joy and peace and courage and trust? I hope so. I hope so.

hoping and quietly counting,
Blog Med Sig 4

Hoping with friends, never alone...

9 comments:

eloranicole said...

it's hard counting...i've been doing it since the beginning of february and fight the habit-forming skill {and blessing}

beautiful post, friend.

cathy said...

Your Lent journal reminds me of a journal I once kept while on a 10 day retreat into the woods - the same questions of trust in self and Self, in nature and Nature, in god and God; the same introspection deep enough to help sluff off the heavy veils of illusion ...

Rachel said...

Happy Blogiversary! This is good I think when we fast something like anger or complaining (I'm fasting complaining) for Lent it is a start, and a way of recognizing it in our lives and surrendering to God.

“I don’t understand this situation and it’s painful. But I believe that however I ended up here, through my mistake, someone else’s, or no mistake at all, God has this for me, this difficulty and this pain. He wants to do something in me here."

Great perspective of trust.

Have a blessed week!

Brian Miller said...

i follow not a script but a beautiful author...big smiles. this has been quite the journey for you....and happy blogoversary!

Kati patrianoceu said...

I really am amazed by your discipline of doing this journal. It's great to see your thoughts and their depth, although I admit I'm a little intimidated: all I'm doing for Lent is giving up coffee, and it's so so tough!!

by the way, thank you so much for the kind words about my blog... I wanted to pay-it-forward but I have so little time online these days, and you already listed all my favourites! Maybe on a later date :)

Abby said...

I loved this all very much and that sweetness of right into your journal and that hungering after His way for you...trusting that He is for you...such essential trans-formative truth. I guess you are doing this all through Lent...how beautiful:-)

{p.s. your comment at Fan the Flame about the documentary you directed struck a chord with us. I read it to my husband and the Hungarian man he met would have been a youth during the failed uprising. We've spent one year and three summers there and there is so much beauty God is doing in that great void forged in Communism. there are also some truly wonderful Hungarian staff and prominent citizens who care so greatly for the youth and future of their country...I have been writing our calling story...I think it is the 4th or 5th part where I get into when we went there first...thank you again, for this touching comment...here's the link to our story:

http://findtheflametofan.blogspot.com/search/label/Our%20Story

Bless you!}

alittlebitograce said...

I love your thoughts on trust and thankfulness, how they are interwoven. I found this today(and yesterday) when my children came in completely covered in mud and i was ready to lose it. As i dealt with all their muddy snowgear, I fought off the demons of resentment, bitterness and frustration with the bright light of thankfulness. Whenever those pesky beasts show up, I'm trying to do the same, especially with doubt and fear tag along. It's so encouraging how a thankful heart changes everything.

Southern Gal said...

I love your heartfelt honest words.

emily wierenga said...

i so enjoy being invited into the intimacy of your walk with the Lord, joybird... you have such a tender, beautiful heart. i can sense how much he loves you-and you're so easy to love, friend. xo

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