Here I am. Wide awake at 5:30. An hour and a half before my alarm.
And I didn’t get to bed early last night. No, quite the contrary. By the time my head finally hit the pillow and I closed my eyes, I had that all-too-familiar thought: “I’m going to be SO tired tomorrow.” And then I had to force myself not to do the math- the “how many hours of sleep will I get if I fall asleep within the next ten minutes” math.
But I’m awake. Illogically and irrationally.
And so I think maybe it’s God. Maybe He wanted this time with me.
I wanted to write this blog last night. In fact, I wrote most of it in my phone as I lay draped over my bed, teary and snotty and praying wildly.
In the car yesterday as I drove, I was pouring out all my anxieties and the unrest in me to God. And I heard Him say, “Let yourself be loved.”
And at first I kind of laughed and said, “You do realize that’s my primary source of pain, right? Wanting to be loved? Ooookay. I’ll ‘let myself be loved’. Noooo problemo!”
(Sometimes I get kind of sassy with God. ;-))
But then I realized that wasn’t actually the full extent of what letting myself be loved looks like. Letting yourself be loved isn’t the same as wanting love, or even keeping your heart open to the people who love you.
When you let something happen, you relinquish control. You rest and trust. Come what may.
And so that is what God was instructing of me. He wasn’t saying I’m not doing a good job of pursuing love, He was saying I need to take a deep breath and stop thinking it’s my job to hold anything together. He wants me to let go. He wants me to rest. To be able to just be grateful for what He’s provided without worrying when it’s all going to fall apart.
Oh my soul, find rest in God alone.
And yet, even as I realized that yesterday while I drove, and even while my mind keeps straying from Him to things that make me feel all uneasy and fretful and desperate, and even while I have to keep pulling my thoughts away and re-centering them on Him, like a badly aligned car that wants to keep veering into the wrong lane, I hear Him say: “Child, REST. You have to let Me love you, too. You are love-starved. Your heart, why you feel and think the way you do, it isn’t a mystery to Me. And it isn’t a flaw. It’s sorrow. So be patient and compassionate with yourself. Let Me do the good work in you that I have planned. Trust, child. Trust that I love you. Trust that I know what I’m doing.”
And so, I pray:
I know if I look anywhere else for the love I need I will be disappointed. Teach me how to not be disappointed with You.
Teach me how to make my home in You alone.
I don’t want to try to find comfort or rest for my soul in anyone else’s love above Yours.
Teach me how I’m not alone when I’m sobbing on my knees on my bedroom floor, hands raised to heaven. I’m. Not. Alone.
Help Your loving eyes and Your reassuring hug be what floods my mind when I’m grasping for something to hold on to- somewhere for my mind to rest and breathe.
And teach me how to desire Your invisible love more than the love of people.
I’m trying so hard to want You above all else, Lord. But I’m not there yet. I need You. I love You. But I feel like it doesn’t matter because You aren’t delivering.
I don’t understand how an invisible God can truly be all that I need.
And I feel frustrated because I feel like I’ve given You ample time to come to me like wind or fire or rain or breath. And I feel like You’re not here. You’re not here and still You’re saying all I need is You. And HOW. IS. THAT. POSSIBLE?!?!
Only I know that it is.
Teach my heart how to know that too.
And I also know, Lord, that it can’t be true that You aren’t delivering or coming to me. Because You are good and You are love and You change not.
So is the problem me?
But that can’t be true either- not because the problem is never me ;-), but because I’m on my knees before You, begging You to make right what is wrong in me and capture my heart and draw me to You. I am BEGGING. And I am trying so hard to keep seeking Your face and not anything else this world has to offer.
And You hear me. And You see me. And You know how hard I’m trying and how desperately I am asking for Your help.
Even when I feel alone and empty inside and I’m wracked with sorrow, You hear.
But Lord, I don’t want my relationship with You to be the equivalent of me wrapping my own arms around myself and saying it’s You. I don’t want to call my own voice resounding in my head and heart You and fight to believe that it is, that it isn’t just me being lonely and needing my God to show up.
And maybe it is You. All of it. But how is THAT enough??
How do I hug myself and comfort myself and speak Your truth over myself and have that matter as much to me as someone letting me rest my head on their shoulder or dry my tears or seeing love in someone’s eyes?
How do I make You be my heart’s desire?
Maybe I can’t. Maybe that has to be all You. And maybe I’m here, trying so hard and beating myself up, and maybe You’re just simply saying, “Child, let Me love you.”
And so I’ll just keep falling to my knees and sobbing, emptying myself out before You, begging You to take me and fill me up everywhere I’m empty and broken. I’ll just keep begging, hands raised to heaven, that You will help me know and love You more.
Abba? That’s all I want for my birthday. Just for You to be my soft pillow, my security blanket, the invisible hug that, even though it can’t be seen, can be felt just as real as anything this world has to offer.
In fact, Lord, more than all I can see and touch and taste and hear in this world, help Your love for me to be the realest, truest thing.
Oh, Lord. Please, please, please don’t take anything else precious from me. But I don’t need You to give me anything else either. Nothing else but You.
Teach me how You are enough and how I’m not alone.
And show me how You looked on me with delight and all-consuming love and fierce protectiveness the day I was born.
And how You look at me that way still.