"I hold on to You for dear life, and you hold me steady as a post..." Psalm 63

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

This life...

It's a mystery to me...

There are some things I can not understand.
There are directions I can not uncover.  
There are questions I can not answer.  

No matter how many times I ask the same question, sometimes there are just no clear answers.  
I've been asking one question for years.

Sometimes I've asked the question through tears.
Sometimes through frustration.
Sometimes out of obligation.
Sometimes to please other people.
Sometimes out of exhaustion.

{google image}
 The question has gone unanswered for years.
And so I keep asking, 
and waiting...

The question at hand is this one:
What do you want from me?

Although I ask this question to many people in my life; 
sometimes audibly, 
sometimes silently,
 most often this question is directed to God.

Let me explain:
I am a pleaser.
It's pretty cut and dry.  
Tell me what you expect from me and as long as it fits inside my parameter of standards,
 I'll do my best to comply.

Most people in my life will do me the courtesy of explaining what they need from me, 
resulting in my immediate response,
"Your wish is my command"....
{okay, not always...but I try}

It's a fairly simple process:
we form a relationship,
we meet each other half way in mutual respect,
you give...
I give..
and we get along just fine in our little box of relationship etiquette.

It does not work this way with God.

Granted, He's gone to the trouble to write out a little tiny instruction booklet
 that consists of 66 books in which to instruct me in my general day to day living.
I crave the instructions in this book and go there often to seek some of the answers to my other questions.
 I'm not usually satisfied with one version of this book...
I long to understand these instructions thoroughly, so I read them in several versions
I've learned over the years how to search this book for the answers to some of life's dilemmas...
to search and not stop searching until I find what I'm looking for.
This is good.
And I'm so thankful for it.

But to that BIG QUESTION that constantly looms over my shoulder...
there is no explicit answer.

I've learned to break the question up into little bitty bite sized pieces.
And the answer to that is easily found...

"Look for ME"
"See the people around you like I do"
"Love them"
"Reflect ME"
"Choose JOY"
"Trust ME"
"Worship ME today with each breath"
"Be thankful"
"Be intentional"

But I confess that I want more...
it just isn't enough.
And maybe it's because I hear time ticking by and it makes me feel anxious.

At the risk of getting too wordy, I'll sum it up like this:
I need some detailed directions for today 
so that down the road
 {and frankly, at this point, it's not a very long road}
when I find myself waking up in an empty house
 I am not surprised to find myself 
and without 

I didn't choose to be a single mom.
I didn't choose to raise my kids alone.
But I have chosen to make them my priority and remain home with them as long as is humanly possible.  Somewhere along the way I guess I made a conscious decision NOT to change the way I looked at my life JUST BECAUSE my circumstances changed.  

It is not always easy...
and I am constantly looking for ways to supplement our income.
But for now..as long as God allows, it is my choice.
My confirmation comes in the blessing of 
a roof over our heads, 
abundant food on the table
and the provision of all that we NEED.

I still continue to ask the question...
because I believe it is a relevant one...
one which I must continue to seek the answer to
God has granted me the privilege of my heart's desire.

This is not a popular choice in the single-parenting world.
Actually, it's not popular in just about any part of the world.
Even in the church...
it is not popular to be a single parent who CHOOSES to stay at home to raise her children.
At least once every Sunday morning someone asks me if I have found a job.

The church does not have a box that moms like me fit neatly into.
{google image}

And the only BOX I know to put me in is the one marked 
without it, I'm nothing

I'll admit it isn't the answer most people are looking for when they ask how we are surviving.
But frankly, I'm all out of fake answers that satisfy other people.
I still ask the question...
more and more with each passing week.


and really, all I'm looking for is a little tiny glimpse into the future...
because at the core of me, all I need is someone to tell me what they want...
and I'm there.

This is not a new place for me..
for years now, the blinds have been pulled
the window has been nailed shut
and the resounding answer has been 
{google images}

"And while you wait, keep moving forward."
And so I must wait.
It's dark in here..
 often lonely..
 and sometimes there are nothing but short whispers of instruction.

{google image}

But I've come to learn that I will be told what I need to know
WHEN I need to know it.
And not a moment sooner...

And in the meantime, my job is to
 be Thankful 
for the time at home
for the chance to disciple my children
for the privilege of living at a slower pace
for the honor of learning to TRUST God's hand

And I'm learning not to feel guilty because I don't fit in everyone else's box.
I'm learning to be grateful that God is turning and twisting my heart in these years...
He's making something new in me...
something that He can use later on.

He's just choosing to withhold the set of directions that dictates my next move,
for a time
and waiting WITH me.

"Why would you ever complain, O Jacob, 

   or, whine, Israel, saying,

"God has lost track of me. 
   He doesn't care what happens to me"?
Don't you know anything? Haven't you been listening?
God doesn't come and go. God lasts. 
   He's Creator of all you can see or imagine.
He doesn't get tired out, doesn't pause to catch his breath. 
   And he knows everything, inside and out.
He energizes those who get tired, 
   gives fresh strength to dropouts.
For even young people tire and drop out, 
   young folk in their prime stumble and fall.
But those who wait upon God get fresh strength. 
   They spread their wings and soar like eagles,
They run and don't get tired, 
   they walk and don't lag behind."
Isaiah 40:27-31


LemonyRenee' said...

I so get this post and what you are saying here. And I admire your patience and insight into your waiting. I pray for such grace.

Grace Remembers said...

Amen! I can so RELATE, yet in different circumstances. Its the question of my life too and lately all I keep hearing back is be content now, wait, and move when you hear that soft voice. (also really appreciate the boarded up window pictures.) I recently wrote a child's story to my unborn child and have Isaiah 40 at the end of it. Thanks for sharing and CHEERS...to the hope of never being put back into that box again!!

Carrie Grace

Mrs.Rabe said...

Waiting on God is part of the process God uses in our lives, and frankly one I don't like too much! :) I can relate to the wanting to KNOW aspect.

I must say I have always been a cheerleader for your choice to stay home as long as you could. It used to be that the church would help out mom's in your circumstance. Now we just expect them to go to work and juggle it all alone. sigh. I am so proud of you for this choice you made.

I read a blog called Tomato Soup Cake - have you read it? Here is the link - http://tomatosoupcake.blogspot.com/

She says she is a "single homeschool mama...thinking on lovely things." Sweet, real, lovely.

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