Thursday, May 2, 2013

The Mercy Slide

My thoughts are incomplete.  They are a bit rambly.  They are definitely imperfect.  But writing helps, and so instead of avoiding it because I can't get it perfect, I'm just gonna let it fly and see what happens.

Lately I find myself going between extreme joy and clarity one moment to utter confusion and doubt the next.

Life is just like that sometimes, isn't it? Or maybe it's more accurate to say - that's just life.

Sometimes all you can do is throw yourself at the feet of Jesus, ya know?  And as oddly violent as that imagery sounds throwing myself down always is the right answer, even though it looks different every time.

For now,  I cannot spend enough time in prayer.  There aren't enough bible studies, devotionals and verses-of-the-day to quench my thirst. And it's not because I feel like I am praying to no one and finding nothing.  Quite the opposite.  I am finding so much life in those words, in His presence. Gods word is for me.  For today. What an awesome thing to believe that to my very center.

It's sort of freeing to embrace that you're imperfect, but still capable of change and becoming a better version of you. I'm learning to be okay with that tension.  Extremes are easy.  Living in tension is more difficult, but more rewarding.

It's comforting to find that when you go running to God  he doesn't always give you what you want, but always gives you exactly what you need. So sometimes the emotions are still all over the place, but there is sweet peace and mercy from God.  The calm inside while the storm merrily rages on.

And like a child whose been assured once again that Mom and Dad will be waiting at the bottom of the slide, I run off and begin to climb.  God is gracious enough to allow us to feel the fear that must be conquered in order to climb. Maybe the lesson is to not begrudge the climb? We often ask for the climb to be taken away, as though we would be better off if we were just plunked from slide-top to slide-top. But I wonder - if those dream seeds God has knit into our being take time and sometimes a lot of blood, sweat, and tears to become reality.  If there is no struggle, no risk, if we don't have to conquer anything to get to the top of that slide we're just victims of gravity...maybe?  Can we understand the beauty of mercy and grace if we have no need of it?

This is what it feels like when you discover your calling, I suppose. When you screw up the courage to believe God has created you for a purpose, not just to breath air and take up space, but to do something - to live a life that matters.  Something changes when you speak outloud that tiny dream you have been to afraid to give oxygen to.  But let it out.  Courage, Faith and Obedience are all muscles we must exercise! Just do it! and climb one more step, even if it scares you!

Believe in your heart that God has created you to do something that will be big enough in God's kingdom that the only way it would be possible for it to happen would be that God would do it through spite of you...because of you.  All three, maybe?

But even more amazing than that is to know that whatever he has called you to comes with the promise of his presence, The gifts of his love, grace and mercy to those who are faithful.  Forgiveness for when we screw up and are faithless.

Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed,
    for his compassions never fail.
They are new every morning;
    great is your faithfulness.
Lamentations 3:22-23

So here I am.  Climbing a new ladder.  I can't even see the top yet, but I will do my best to climb well and to learn all that I have to so that when I do arrive at the summit of this challenge, I will be thankful for the lessons I have learned as I climbed each rung.  I will stand at the top and my heart will know that God made me for this moment.  Then I'll throw my hands in air and feel the sweet thrill of racing to the bottom, my heart will hear him say "Well done, you did it!" and then...

 I'll climb again.


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