Ok Lord. Here we are. Blank page. Full mind.
I’ve sent all the kids to the backyard for a little while because I just.can’t.deal.
I know YOU are the only thing that will satisfy and that you are all I need, but I’m struggling so hard to believe that today.
I feel like a hollow shell of a woman who just posted about Jesus Frosting and drinking deeply from your living water, and now has no idea what the hell to do with the near smothering anxiety and hopelessness I’m feeling.
You say you are faithful to complete your good work in me, but I cannot figure out how on earth that is going to happen. I’m so freaking dysfunctional.
I honestly feel like I may have a mental health issue. When do you know you need to be on meds?
Shamefully I’ve often looked at meds as a crutch. I’m such a judgmental wretch.
And here I sit at my kitchen table. It’s 2 oclock on a random Tuesday and I’ve already cried twice today. I know I need you but instead of laying prostrate on the floor with my bible, I ran to pita bread and feta cheese and a strong stout.
In a moment of wisdom, I put my phone and library book down and listened to Bethel’s Come To Me on repeat.
You are my anchor in the wind and the waves. You are my steadfast and I won’t be afraid. Though my heart and flesh fail me, you’re my faithful strength. You are with me wherever I go. So Jesus, I come to you because you’re all I need. I come to you for everything. I come to you cuz you’re all I need. I come to you for everything.
Through bites of cheese and bread and heaving sobs, I felt like I had a moment with you. As though maybe, just maybe, my doubt was unfounded. That you maybe are all I need. I begged you to help me. To do your work in me despite myself. To open me up and to dig deep inside and fix my brokenness. To help me to really know you not just know cool stuff about you and how you operate in other people’s lives.
A couple weeks ago at church they suggested God isn’t looking for perfection, just devotion and that’s freaking good news for me!
I’m terrifically imperfect. But I think I am devoted.
Even as frustrated as I got today, I felt myself clinging to you…even just by a skinny thread.
I even wanted to let go of you, but something inside wouldn’t let me.
Maybe it was devotion.
Definitely it was your tender mercy.
The kids all came inside and the littles went down for nap. I gave Grace the ipad, pushing aside the guilt of that maneuver the best I could, and I crawled into bed and burrowed under all of my heaviest covers. I read a little of my library book and then I just weakly called out to you and closed my eyes.
A little while later a random kid song from the ipad woke me up and I then I heard Drew stirring in his crib. We had to get outside. I had to brush my teeth and put on a bra and breathe some fresh air.
So we walked around the block. It wasn’t magical, but it was necessary.
We came home and the girls had fun pushing Drew around the backyard while I threw dinner into the oven. We all ate while Facetiming with Andy.
I always wish Facetime went better. That the kids could all be onscreen, that I would have only one chin and no bags under my eyes, that the connection wouldn’t fail right as I was spilling my guts. You know, complicated stuff like that.
At one point I just couldn’t take it anymore so I got up and crawled back into bed. They ended the call and Drew got stuck under the piano bench so I came to his rescue. We somehow managed to move through the bedtime process without me crawling back into bed or yelling at anyone. #victory
Once the girls were in bed I started on the dishes and collecting the trash and recycling to put out on the curb. Turns out Drew wasn’t so ready to go to bed yet so I fetched him from his crib and let him play in the living room. He was clearly tired and began bumping into things as he was crawling around. That poor little noggin is getting its share of hard knocks lately. I cradled him in my arms to comfort him, and in typical fashion he struggled to get away from me.
Why couldn’t I get ONE cuddly baby? Why?
I walked him into his room, cleared 101 toys from his rocking chair and cuddled him with his blankie, begging God to let me have a sweet moment with my boy. Begging God to settle Drew just enough for a few short cuddles and a little enjoyment instead of the constant movement and climbing and straining to get down.
No cuddles were to be had, and I felt all alone.
Like I was reaching out with my whole heart to God from the song time earlier to the dark bedroom with Drew and God wasn’t responding.
I know He cares and I know He’s not some genie in a lamp, but I was desperately wishing he’d just throw me a bone. Give me some little inkling that He saw me.
I finished up the dishes and got the trash out to the curb, and I puzzled in my mind how my Good Father could seem so freaking far away.
I figured it was my fault. That my faith was just weak today and maybe tomorrow would be better.
Earlier I’d posted an ugly picture of myself on Instagram. I felt compelled to show where I really was…a red-eyed mess of tears wearing a bathrobe and not a stitch of makeup in the middle of the day. This was in contrast to my normal M.O. which takes 14 selfies to get one that makes me look pretty. I included a Dietrich Bonheoffer quote and hit “share” before I could chicken out.
That post garnered an outpouring of love that really touched my heart. People letting me know I wasn’t alone and offering prayers and reminders of God’s grace. It was such a gracious response to a very raw portrait.
I wondered if maybe God was gently nudging me with their words.
Then a couple of dear women texted me, offering conversation and care and solutions to the many things stressing me out at the moment. They really wanted to help me. They truly cared and weren’t just doing a good deed.
As cheesy as it may sound, they made me want to be a better woman.
They made me want to stand up more often to help and encourage other people. To ask enough questions to find a need and then to joyfully meet it. To put hands and feet on the loving and kind God we serve.
I’m humbled to be His daughter. I’m humbled to be surrounded by so many sweet examples of His goodness.
He hasn’t forgotten about me. He cares. He sees me.