Monday, August 4, 2008

Outcomes

I say to myself, 'The LORD is my portion; therefore I will wait for him.' Lamentations 3:24

Thank you, my dear friends, for sharing your journeys with me last week. [Or rather, three weeks ago. I started this on July 22. Sorry about the late posting.] Your insight, sympathy, and prayers really did make a difference.

The decision was made, but it wasn't a simple smooth landing. And once I made my decision, others had to respond to it, leaving it all up in the air...for so long. Ugh. Let's see what I can clear this up, at least a little.

After two months of 'process,' I was offered what I once described as my dream job. A job I would love to do, at a place I already know in substantial part. But I wasn't able to take the job due to a salient point that simply would not work itself out. And getting to that conclusion was the longest, most drawn out process in my life to date.

And God made sure it was a little bit of an extra challenge, when He shifted slightly the manner in which He directed me. That's where this question came from. God has always directed me through a profound peace in the deepest place in my heart. But in this scenario, He would neither give me peace nor let me release it...and it took me (quite) awhile to figure out that there was another option.

When I finally figured out what my response should be to the offer, I really believed that in some miraculous way, God would open the door. And it would have taken a miracle to bring it all together.

But He didn't. And I freely admit to being stymied. I don't fully understand this process yet. That doesn't throw me too badly; I've lived long enough to know that the lessons aren't usually learned in the process but in the reflections after-the-fact. But I am anxious to understand where I've landed. Why did God do all that hard work in me, opening my heart to a different place and position, and then say, "No"? Or at least, "Not now"? It has thrown me more than I anticipated, more, perhaps, than I know how to deal with smoothly. Why do I say this? Well...I wrote this post last Friday (8/1):
Today, I feel so alone.

It's hard to put words to it. There has been so much swirling in my life and around my life for months now. There is much that I cannot share here. But the effect has been to leave me feeling sad, empty, and alone. Feeling like my life is adrift, without value... I understand that these things aren't true, but I still feel that way.

Sometimes I feel friendless, homeless, helpless...naked and unsure... See, I told you that it was hard to put words to it.

Sometimes, I long for adventure, love, purpose. And in the mundane routine of life as is, these things seem ethereal, and distant.

In moments like these, I know that I stand at a crossroads. I could focus on these feelings and walk down a road of self-indulgent pity, or I could put my big girl panties on, turn toward the truth of my life, and live. And I almost without fail turn toward the truth.

But it haunts me that I find snatches of truth in what I am turning my back on too, and that I know I will find myself back here again at some point...

*sigh*

I don't know where I am or where I'm headed. I just needed to put this down and begin to process these thoughts, 'cause I don't like feeling adrift and awash. It's time to figure this out...
-J


The conclusion of the matter remains to be seen. Even what God has started has yet to be fully revealed. What I know is this: I am on a journey, one He is directing. I am not lost, even if I feel rudderless. I am reminded of the disciples on the Sea of Galilee when the storm came up and they were certain they were gonna die...while Jesus slept in their very boat. I can't imagine all the scenarios that ran through their heads (or all the friends they may have lost in that very way). What I know is that Jesus was directing their destiny--whether that be by life or by death--even as the storm raged. As one whom He has confirmed as His own by the presence of His Holy Spirit, I can adamantly state that He still directs my boat through the storm. And I refuse to entertain thoughts (lies) to the contrary.

But you might have to give me a little latitude for processing. I suspect that this process may dig deep into me, and those kinds of refinements require, well, a lot of processing. He's never started me on a journey that He didn't finish. I'm just looking forward to seeing where we land.

At peace in His plan,
-J

Others went out on the sea in ships;
they were merchants on the mighty waters.
They saw the works of the LORD,

his wonderful deeds in the deep.
For he spoke and stirred up a tempest

that lifted high the waves.
They mounted up to the heavens and went down to the depths;

in their peril their courage melted away.
They reeled and staggered like drunken men;

they were at their wits' end.
Then they cried out to the LORD in their trouble,

and he brought them out of their distress.
He stilled the storm to a whisper;

the waves of the sea were hushed.
They were glad when it grew calm,

and he guided them to their desired haven.
Let them give thanks to the LORD for his unfailing love

and his wonderful deeds for men.
Let them exalt him in the assembly of the people
and praise him in the council of the elders.
--Psalm 107:23-32, NIV

(c) 2008

5 comments:

Beth said...

J-, boy to I remember feeling so much like this at one point in my life. I remember how difficult each day was, for quite a while, my mind knew what was right, I was making right choices, but that did not change how my heart felt....crushed, hurt, confused, betrayled, alone, afraid, all of those things, all at once. Each morning I had to talk myself thru each day....I would have to tell myself over and over...trust in God is a choice beyond our emotions...so choose HIM in this moment....even to say choose HIM today was overwhelming... I just had to go MOMENT by moment.....choosing to trust... choosing to lean... choosing believe that He was there. Amidist the fog...amidst the storm.
I will pray for you in the moments you face today. love you.

Allison said...

J--I, too, identified with the thoughts in your August 1 post. Is it a comfort to know that these thoughts and feelings are familiar to someone else? When I am in a similar place, I find that it isn't a place I can stay long, because it only makes the hole--the lost and abandoned feeling--deeper. The Holy Spirit is so good to remind me again of what I know to be true about my God--He loves me thoroughly, His plans for me are perfect, He wants only what is best for me, He knows the end--and those reminders help me to rest in Him. Sometimes it takes a while for my heart to get where it needs to be, but He's so patient. I trust He will minister to your heart in the coming days. Love to you--

Sarah@Life in the Parsonage said...

You are not "rudderless" love that.

It is a journey...that's for sure.

Rachel said...

You are such a writer. You share you thoughts so clearly.

I must say that I need a phone call!!

I saw that you read my blog that was a letter to my in-laws. Please uses your writting skills and rewrite it. Ok. I was waiting to see what you thought. SO if you have a minute to let me know that would be great.

I really don't want you to ever feel friendless or unloved again. Because that is so not the truth. However with the miles between us, sometimes I just miss hanging out with you.

Anonymous said...

I just heard Ginny Owens' song "If You Want Me To" and thought of you (and me). Great song. Here's the link if you don't know it... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JvqbDiOjuwE

- Suzann