Edited heavily because upon re-reading I felt like I wasn’t saying what I wanted to in the first place…(It felt like a laundry list of stuff I thought I’d done good with and that is a little bit icky…) But not deleted because I loved Lemon Stand’s comment. 😉
I believe that God can make good out of all circumstances.
Which I always follow with the Val caveat of: That doesn’t mean that all circumstances are good as I think some Christian schools of thought try to make us believe. Some of them are really and truly by definition bad. But I believe God demonstrates His nature by making goodness come out of even what was intended for evil .
I think about Rumplestiltskin spinning gold out of straw when I imagine the work that God does making good things come out of difficulties. Ok–Without the whole demanding jewelry and rights to one’s firstborn child thing going on of course. But surely taking the ordinary stuff of straw and making it into gold is something like what God does when he takes the ordinary stuff of my life, even the hard parts, and spins it into something beautiful and useful to Him. He redeems the ordinary and makes it shine and brings it value.
I was thinking today that maybe in the past I have been impatient with God in His making good come out of bad.
After a difficult circumstance, I would plunge myself headlong into a ’cause’ related to that circumstance. Mom got Lung Cancer and I was fired up to advocate for a stigmatized and under-represented disease which I did in only small ways, really. I had Postpartum Depression, so I learned about military spouses battling the disease and tried to find ways to help. I almost think I was trying to force myself to get perspective, and to force ‘good stuff’ to come out of the bad. If I could feel like I was helping others then good stuff was coming out of it, right? I feel a great need to empathize with others going through things that once got my own shoes dirty. Don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying that’s a bad thing. Giving back where others had given to me makes sense. Moving forward by being a shoulder in a way I remember desperately needing one makes sense to me.
But maybe at times what I was really doing was trying to rush God in the gold-making process. Maybe I was telling him to move over from the spinning machine because this hurt and I was ready for something positive to come out of it. Maybe I was taking things into my own hands instead of trusting Him and trying to force things with my own strength.
And the thing is…. With the tumor thing going on right now, I can’t spin anything (I have what is called a Carotid Paraganglioma–a tumor on my Carotid Artery and it’s treatable, but complex. His name is Tomas and if you want to you can read about him at the Tomas blog where I update about that particular journey fairly often). At least not yet.
I’m just too tired. It feels like too much on top of being pregnant and having two older wonderful kiddos and trying to maintain some semblance of ‘normal life’ and juggling a newly deemed ‘high risk pregnancy (baby is ok, it’s just they worry when Mom is a medical freak of nature),’ and trying to prepare myself for life with a newborn, and life after surgery… well you get the idea. I’ve got no energy left for trying to make the spinning happen on my own. I just have to trust that the wheel is already going on it’s own.
And somehow, all the stuff right now hits just a little too deeply to try to wring a ’cause’ out of it, or to try to spin it in any way. I’m not saying that the other things didn’t cut deeply. They most certainly did. Losing my mother to an evil disease wrung me inside out. Having my world go to shades of grey after I had a baby and at various other times did too. Experiencing grief and loss, going through deployments… All these things that have been part of my very own ‘crucible’ have cut to the depths without question.
But somehow this feels different. I feel unable to move out of it and manufacture forced goodness.
I feel as though I’m not called to.
I feel like my job is to be here in it. To be where I am. To be cared for. To step back from GOOD things–church stuff, and even the job that I was so excited about just a year ago, and other things that might be ‘good’ and might even allow me to ‘do good’ but that just don’t fit for this season. I’ve felt God say, “This is not the season for those things.”
And I have not felt propelled into new things. Even into writing here very much as you can see.
I’ve just…. been.
In some ways it’s stuckness. And, as I said tiredness. In some ways it’s difficulty processing it all. I don’t know if I connect head and heart very much on the issues involved. I’ve mostly coped by getting as much information as I could and trying to assimilate it all into a plan. And that’s all been very cerebral.
But maybe it’s also God calling to my heart and saying, “I’ve got the spinning stuff under control, and you don’t even have to spend three days guessing to know my name. You know my name. It is I Am. And I Am right where you are. You don’t have to manufacture anything or spin your own gold. Just rest and let Me do that.”
I hope in this season, I can learn to let that be enough.