Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Solid Rock

"It is a good thing to have all the props pulled out from under us occasionally.  It gives us some sense of what is rock under our feet, and what is sand." - M. L'Engle                                                          If grades were given out for the last year I would have pulled in a solid D-.  I don't write this to fain humility.  Only to be honest.  After reading through the written account of this journey I need to clear the air before moving on.  The posts hinted at doubt, confusion, and fears but did little to paint the picture of me flailing about like a fish out of water every time we hit a patch of unknown.  Every time.   

It was as if ten years of very carefully applied ministry make up had to be washed off and I could not recognize the person staring back at me from the mirror.  It is hard to capture in words just how terrifying it is to not be the person you thought you were when the waves come.  The props get pulled down and sand washes away. I was sure much more rock would have been left behind. It is unnerving to stand on the small square of stone left, when you thought there would be a mountain. 

But here is the amazing part.  The part that has plastered a silly smile on my make-up free face.  Even if I had pulled in  solid A-'s and gone through less tissues and late night purge sessions with Jeff, God's love remains the same.  His character remains true even when mine does not.  He promises to provide and protect and guide even if I get helplessly lost during parts of the journey.  The grade book is thrown out, and I am resting in His grace.  Under His grace I get an A.  Undeserved and by His hands not mine.  In that, there is so much freedom.  There is freedom to stop striving for what I thought He had for us.  There is freedom in knowing it is not all about our little family of five anyway.  There is freedom in knowing He loved me before the ten years of ministry and He loves me now. And that His plan is still so much bigger than anything I could dream of.

What the last few weeks have shown me is that He is faithful to wash out the sand and slowly replace it with rock.  He is faithful to take away white knuckled dreams and give us what is better than any desire or sacrifice.  He gives Himself.  We have had beautiful talks with the boys, family, and friends over what is next.  We are excited and resting in what seems to be lining up.  The hushed talks after dinner are not filled with fear, doubt, or striving but with humble expectation.  

There is great mercy in doors closing.  And sweet freedom in realizing He wants every ounce of our hearts rather than straight A's.  There is Joy in finding solid rock and knowing no amount of waves will wash it away.  We continue to paddle forward as a family and we can't wait to share with you what is next on this wild ride.  

"Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ,through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand.  And we boast in the hope of the glory of God."  Romans 5:1&2