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A Different Kind of Anniversary

Posted by on April 12, 2012

I thought my dreams had come true. I thought I had finally found it. Even when it became harder to believe that this was anywhere close to being what I’d always dreamed of, I dug my heels in hard and refused to abandon those hopes that came so easily in the beginning. That’s what I do. I’m kind of a fighter like that.

And so now, when I sit here wondering why, after weeks of dissolution, I still feel so much pain, I have to bring myself back around to the sad truth: I thought this was it. So I gave more of myself than I have ever given. I trusted more deeply, loved more fully and hoped more tenaciously than I have ever dared before. As a direct result, the wound is deeper, the pain more profound.

Only now, I’m stronger. Now, I can take it. It doesn’t leave me in a crumpled heap, wondering what to do next. It hurts like Hades, yes. It makes me mad as a hatter sometimes for sure. But it has not stolen my joy, has not killed me, has not destroyed the work that God began in me. Yes, weeping may remain for a night, and this may be the longest night I’ve seen yet, but I know – I know that joy is coming in the morning. {cue the gospel music – are ya with me?}

In all seriousness…

I was driving down the road last June, and as I cried and offered God my sad, resigned form of trust, He whispered, Don’t be afraid to hope. I drove down that same road a few days ago, and it hurt to remember. I thought I knew what He meant then. I had let myself hope that very day, and as things unfurled, I began to think that this would all be part of the same story. Only it didn’t turn out that way. I steeled myself and wondered: what has changed between now and then? What have I learned? What do I know now, in what way am I better equipped to obey Him when He tells me to hope?

But my heart, so heavy with sadness, couldn’t seem to find a way through to any answers except the ways that I had failed. Clearly I’d done something wrong here, I’d somehow misunderstood. At the very moment that it occurred to me to ask a different kind of question, I also found the answer. What hasn’t changed since then? Bless the Lord, oh my soul, who is the same yesterday, today, and forever. He does not change like shifting shadows, and His gifts are good and perfect. My hope, that hope He whispered to me ten months ago today, was, is and always will be in Him. Because He never changes.

You know, I don’t think it’s any coincidence that God told Isaiah His ways and His thoughts are higher than ours. Maybe it was His way of saying that not only are His actual ways higher than ours, but our minds cannot even begin to imagine what He has dreamed up for us. We can’t even think as high as He can. I don’t know about you, but that in and of itself gives me hope. Because sometimes it’s hard to imagine the other side of the hurt. Sometimes it’s just plain impossible. But we have a God whose love knows no bounds, whose goodness is limitless, and He is deep enough to dream. So I think I’d rather let Him do all the dreaming – wouldn’t you?

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