I have discovered recently that emotional healing is rarely ever instantaneous. Or even final. There’s not a moment when you realize you’re “all better”.
Hurt is multifaceted, and healing is too. It’s a process. A process of grieving what was lost and accepting with joy what God has for you, even when it looks different than what you expected.
It’s so much easier to accept the today that is, even in exchange for the the today that I imagined, when I know that God’s plans are greater than my own, even if I don’t understand right now.
Sometimes I miss being a child, even when it comes to eating the meal that was prepared for me and maintaining a strict bedtime. It’s funny how the things of childhood that made me so eager to grow up were also some of the things that I look back on now as being the foundation to the sense of security and safety I felt as a child. Even if I protested, even if I said it “wasn’t fair”, I knew that my parents had a reason for the rules they made. I knew they loved me. I knew they just wanted the best for me.
And so maybe that’s why I don’t struggle as much as I might otherwise when it comes to trusting God with “faith like a child”. Part of me never really grew up. Part of me never stopped needing someone to look out for me and know what is best for me, even if what’s best for me makes me want to stomp my feet and proclaim how “unfair” it is. 🙂
I don’t know that any of us ever stop needing that. I don’t think we ever stop needing parents. I don’t think we ever stop needing in general. Hunger is a good thing. It keeps us heaven-focused- as long as we correctly identify the reason for the hunger we are feeling.
And that is why, the older I get, the more I appreciate Jesus’ promise to be all that we need. It blows my mind. I know I say that a lot, but it’s true. Sometimes I feel so moved and in awe of Him that I feel like I could start to levitate or something. Like the little cartoon dude in the Red Bull commercials. Wings could sprout from my back and I could just hover mid-air, arms raised to the sky in worship of the One who created this world and loved us with a love more real and deep than we can even fathom, even though we didn’t deserve it.
I am glad that our hearts are structured in such a way that we never stop needing God. I am grateful that I have no choice but to depend on Him. And I am even more grateful that He is always, always there. He is always exactly what I need. I am never lacking.
And when I realize that I still have tender places in my heart, places that I thought were long healed? I know I don’t have to be discouraged by that. I don’t have to throw my hands up in defeat and envision for myself a melancholy life. Rather, I can rest in the comfort of knowing that God wouldn’t reveal those places to me unless it was time to work on them. Together.
I have been thinking a lot lately about abiding in Him. Truly residing in His love. Because if that is the most important thing to us, we are safe. Nothing can touch us. His love can act as a bubble. A protective barrier. The world’s war and drama cannot touch me. People’s rejection and hurtful words cannot make me believe lies. He is in control of my bank account and the health of my loved ones. I needn’t worry.
I think that the only way to get through life is to continually, moment-to-moment sometimes, commit our hearts to Him. It is only in Him that are hearts are safe. It is only in Him that there is life and hope and joy and healing.
Which leads me to my final thought: At times I have devoted all of my energy towards growth or healing or trying to make someone love me. “This is what God wants for me!” I would protest when I began to feel like I was swimming upstream. And so I’d struggle harder against the current, only to eventually give up, convinced God doesn’t’ actually want anything good for me at all.
But, while God does want for me to be loved and healed and to grow, my focus was wrong. I was pursuing those things instead of Him. I was trying to will myself to grow, force myself to be healed, and convince people that I was worth their time and energy. And when my focus, when what I pursue is a thing instead of the Lord, it is futile. It is like swimming against a current.
We are wired to pursue Him. We are wired to need Him. We are wired not to be able to be self-sufficient.
He has a plan.
And His timing is perfect.
And I am safe.
My future is secure.
His love surrounds me.
No weapon formed against me shall prosper.
God is for me.
Have I begun floating, Red Bull-style, yet?! 😉