Sunday, February 3, 2013

Learning Lessons

My life doesn't always look the way I think it should. It doesn't always look the way I want it to.

January was a challenging month and a dramatic time to be inside my prayer life.  You see, God isn't giving me something that I thought He would give me.  And He isn't really telling me why He won't give it to me.

He doesn't have to.

But I really, really, really want Him to.

As I've journeyed through this time, I've asked Him a lot of questions.

I've fasted.

I've cried.

I've prayed novenas.

I've kicked and screamed at Heaven.

I've been to daily mass and to Reconciliation.

I've blamed Saints.

I've mediated on Scripture.

I've journaled and journaled and journaled.

I've tried praying through it; I've tried not thinking about it.

I've talked and talked about it.

I've read books. I've painted. I've rearranged furniture. I've made lesson plans. I've cleaned. I've graded papers. I've spent time listening to friends tell me about their lives.

No matter what I've done or intentionally not done, my soul has struggled and my heart has hurt.

I hate when people spill out their personal lives online. I also hate when bloggers are so vague that I'm left super curious about what is happening in their lives.  Here's to me finding a virtuous balance in this post...

There is a person in my life who has undoubtedly brought me closer to God. This person has been there for me in some hard moments and has made me laugh when I've least expected to laugh. The two of us have been through a lot together, and we've been in each others' lives through a lot of individual journeys.

Together, we've worked hard to serve God, argued about theological things, and tried to figure out God's will and how best we can love Him.

And over the years, throughout all of that, we've tried to find the place for each other in our lives.

It's been hard. It's looked like a lot of different things at a lot of different times.

January was all about me learning to accept, once again, that I still don't have it figured out.

What I've learned this time around though, is something that I hope I never forget. Because as so much of my life has been clouded by this confusion, one thing has become more clear, more real, and more present in my life.

God exists.  He is indescribably real and present.

Throughout this time, I've questioned a lot of things and run through countless scenarios. The only thing that has been constant is the reality of who God is.

Somehow, when I look at Him - really look at Him, all of the confusion and turmoil and frustration and absolute annoyance fade ... just enough for me to really know that God loves me.  And that the beauty and simplicity of who He is in my life, of who I am in His eyes, is more than enough to sustain me.

It doesn't take away all that I'm feeling inside.

It doesn't silence all the thoughts and possibilities running through my mind.

Do I like the way this situation looks now? I don't.
Do I understand why it is the way it is?  Do I understand what God is doing? No. Not at all.

But my point is, maybe that's how it's supposed to be right now.  Maybe I'm not in this place to learn a lesson in discernment or in God's ways.

Maybe I'm just supposed to be learning lessons in God.  Maybe I'm just supposed to learn that He is enough.  Not because my life is a perfectly wrapped package.  Not because I've finally found the instruction manual.  Just because He is a constant light. A consistent love. A never-ending source of grace and goodness.

Even when my world is not what I want it to be, when it would be so easy and so natural to just fall away, He is exactly what I need: the Source that sustains me.

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