So, what's there to say? It's been silent on this side of town lately. It feels like a lot is happening all the time. On the outside, it looks normal: soccer games, graduation preparations, potty training, weaning, tuck in kisses and goodnights followed by the familiar, "you don't need more water goodnight" style goodnights. It may look normal on the outside.
But, insert the confused stares at graduation meetings and I'm sorry, are you in the wrong place? Oh...these are all yours? Oh... types of questions (innocent, but intrusive and confusing for little ears who know no other normal); insert juggling a side writing business and a full-time wife-type of business, and then the tantrums, some normal, some triggered, and the questions about birth certificates, five hour home studies (systems terms for interviews by social services) and adoption talk.
There's a surface layout of what our lives look like; and it might even look a bit like yours. But then there's an under-layer, like long johns, that is scratch, scratch, scratching the surface that we have to attend to every single day.
Yes, God doesn't give you more than you can handle, until he does. Until you are done working out your neck muscles and the Hallelujah can't seem to escape your lips and your arms are drooping and dragging, barely at your side. Do you know the feeling?
I don't think God holds back what we can't handle. Because, truth be told, there's a lot I can't handle. But I do think he carves a dirt road straight through those unmanageable seasons where we find Him walking along with us day by day. In the mud created by the rains of the sorrows, in the heat of the blaring sun that comes out on the days where we feel burned, failed, and injured by people, in the snow where we've reached a point of feeling numb...at the end of the beaten path, we will find Him waiting for us, ready to embrace. And, I do believe, He will turn us around and say, Dear Daughter, I was with you.
This season is so far from over for us; but I guess that's what long-suffering is. That is the definition of endurance in its truest form, is it not? Long-suffering. Be weary. Be worn. Let your arms droop. But don't be afraid to let the Light lift your head from time to time. The ache of today doesn't change the redemption you encountered yesterday (or, perhaps, years ago). The Lifter of your head, the Creator and Caller of the spring is still the boss of the days.
Today might suck. Many days, this season, suck for us, but this I call to mind, and we may feel tired and worn. Hope is not a feeling (sometimes), it's a truth. It's a fact; one that we need to hold onto when our minds, our hearts, and life-state are caught up in some kind of nasty storm.
22 The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases;[b]
his mercies never come to an end;
23 they are new every morning;
great is your faithfulness.
24 “The Lord is my portion,” says my soul,
“therefore I will hope in him.”