Friday, September 11, 2015

The Unknown (The Black Hole)

That moment when you see the black hole and then suddenly you feel yourself falling… and falling… and falling, not knowing when or where you will land. That’s the life. When there is so much unknown and no answers, everything keeps getting pushed and pushed and there is no end in sight. And as I want to throw my almost 30 year old self on the floor and flail my arms and legs in a fit of rage and rebellion, I am quickly reminded that a) I’m too old for that, b) I’m pregnant and I would struggle to get back up off the floor, and c) we are called to have faith in the uncertain and unseen. 

The first two are no brainers… Duh! You cannot do that and won’t be a good example for your children. It’s hard enough to get off the couch after sitting for a while, so it’s obviously going to be a challenge to get off the floor. Do I really want to object myself to that low of a level? No. Okay – so now that I have opted out of self-condescension, I am reminded again of the faith I am called to have.

Some people think I am crazy because I have this reckless abandon toward aspect of life and struggle paired with this faith in God. I believe he will take care of me and provide for me and bless me. Even when things aren’t going as we think they should or everything seems like a mess, I still try to lean on that comfort I have and know that eventually it will all work out (as I chant to myself …. I will be fine. We will be fine. Everything will work out). I was explaining this to my husband last night… When it is unmanageable and out of my control, I just put it in a box to the side and move on to everything else that I need to tackle. When I come back, the box is either gone or it is there and doesn’t seem unmanageable or out of control anymore, or I just have to keep staring at it and praying over it, waiting for God to come in and take care of it.

The hardest thing in life is the unknown. Praying for what you want or need and not getting a definite answer. Throwing all your eggs in one basket and then when the basket falls and all the eggs break we cry out in anger and horror – How did you let this happen?! Why me?! Why now?! We try to find reason in everything that happens in our life and assign guilt, yet most of the time we are wrong and carry grudges or shame for a long time when we could have just left the unknown alone.

So here I am starring at the black space, falling and falling into this unknown. Even when I try to leave that unknown alone, slowly but surely it creeps up into my heart and mind wearing me down. But still, I know that eventually an answer will come – whether it’s the one I want or not. It’s just hard waiting.

In this black space I am comforted. Strange – I know. But, I am comforted in knowing that God’s got this. As hard as it is to say – whether the end result is what we want or not – whatever is meant to happen will happen. In His time, in His way. The struggle is real though… keeping that positive attitude. Giving it to God and trying to not worry about everything that is going on. Taking deep breathes and easing that anxiety away.

Hebrews 11:1 (NIV) Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.

The fundamental fact of existence is that this trust in God, this faith, is the firm foundation under everything that makes life worth living. It’s our handle on what we can’t see. The act of faith is what distinguished our ancestors, set them above the crowd.

Philippians 4:6-7 (NIV) Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done.  Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.

So we are challenged not to fret or worry. Instead of worrying, pray. Let petitions and praises shape your worries into prayers, letting God know your concerns. Before you know it, a sense of God’s wholeness, everything coming together for good, will come and settle you down. Oh how free you feel when God displaces that worry.

Jeremiah 29:11 (NIV) For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.

Most of the time when we are struggling it is because of something we did. I’m not saying everything bad that happens you should blame yourself for. Often times the negativity in our life is due to consequences being reaped from our own actions. Whether those are actions from the present or far in the past. What we don’t realize at the time is how that will affect our future. Everything we do now will come back and affect us later. Whether that is positively or negatively. And then everyone in our life at that time will suffer or rejoice with us.

So stop crying out in anger and horror – How did you let this happen?! Why me?! Why now?! And start looking within. Often times it is not someone else doing something or letting something happen – it is us doing it and allowing it for ourselves.

So before you jump into that black hole and wallow in your own self-pity about how awful everything is at the moment. Sit back and appreciate how awful it is not.

When I was in Hawaii I found out that I did not get accepted into the Grad program that I wanted, but they advised me to reapply the next year which apparently doesn’t happen often. At that time I was devastated. I was in the most beautiful place in the world (at least that I have seen) and it was hard for me to not jump into that black hole because this Grad program was my focus, my goal, my dream.

Now… I look back on that and think – Oh Boy. That was the best thing that could have happened to me this year. I will reapply in the future, but I am so grateful I did not get accepted. Because – I would be there right now. In the middle of my pregnancy, in the middle of selling and buying houses, in the middle of all this craziness of life… I would be weighed down by so much more stress than necessary.

It’s a wonder sometimes how we cannot see the good in what is happening while we are in it. Yet, at some point down the road we can see – this is why this happened. Case in point.
God absolutely has a plan for us – He would never harm us and only wants us to prosper. We have to stop standing in His way and let Him work it. When we stand in his way – more often than not – we struggle. We struggle even when His plan is unfolding at times. And that is the conundrum of life and faith. There is no rhyme or reason at times and we cannot quantify how when or why things happen. Everything does not happen for a reason, and everything is not happening because that is how God wants it to, but He is there with you through it all. 

It was then that I carried you… Enough Said.

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