This post was first shared as issue 21 of These Sacred Words
Well hello again!
I didn’t intend to take the whole summer off of writing, but that’s what happened.
This summer has been filled with change (both good and bad). God has been doing so much lately, and it hasn’t all been easy. He has been changing plans and pausing dreams, revealing idols and misplaced identities, asking for surrender and deeper trust. But for some reason, even though so much has been happening, month after month, I have found myself without words.
This happens every once in a while. Sometimes I just have to ride it out and wait for the words to come, and sometimes I just have to push myself a little, which today looks like forcing myself to sit down with a lukewarm cup of coffee to write this long-overdue post.
I hope, somehow, in my words you will find solidarity for whatever difficult season you find yourself in. I hope, most of all, in these words you will find hope and rest in the truths of the gospel.
I stepped outside last week in shorts and a t-shirt and felt foolish when I realized that fall had unexpectedly descended overnight. A few days later our first Colorado snow fell, which left me wondering how in the world summer could already be over.
Sometimes the seasons changing feels full of excitement and anticipation. Other times it feels like a reminder of how much time has passed, of how much has happened (or not happened), of how much has changed in me and around me.
I look back on this year and it feels like so much has changed. This year I’ve shared a lot with you guys.
I’ve shared about my tendency towards discontent, about struggling to believe God amidst the meaninglessness of the world, about asking for big things from God, about remembering God’s faithfulness, about releasing control and grieving in the midst of a global pandemic, about Easter and loneliness in suffering, about longing and Mother’s Day, and about God’s heart for justice for his image-bearers.
I wrote about all of this, inviting you guys into what the Lord was teaching me and walking me through.
Then for almost three months I wrote nothing. Well, nothing publicly. I filled my journals with scribbled prayers and fears and frustrations as God (graciously) did a painful and refining work in my heart. It all felt too unprocessed to post, and I think I’ll keep this short and share more of the details in a later post, but for now I’ll tell you that God’s grace to me has been a process of changing me – of opening my hands and reminding me that intimacy with him is to be treasured above any answered prayer.
You see, I had written about being open-handed before. About letting go of dreams and desires and truly surrendering to the Lord; about trusting in his unwavering goodness even when things don’t go according to my plan. But this proved to be a difficult mindset to continually keep. But praise the Lord, in the midst of my distraction and forgetfulness and stubbornness, he graciously reminded me of the joy in surrender and nearness to him.
In his mercy, he reminded me who he is. He reminded me that he is a God who is gentle, kind, sovereign, all-knowing, powerful, and so so good. He is a God who is eternal and constant, steadfast and sure, forever unchanging, even amidst the changing of seasons.
“You are good and do good; teach me your statutes.”
Lord, we know that the fiercest tool of the enemy is to tempt us to doubt your character. Protect us, we ask, from the temptation to doubt who you are or to believe that our circumstances (whether favorable or unfavorable) are a determinant of your goodness and blessing. May we trust continually in your character, knowing that you are kind, true, sovereign, all-knowing, and good. May we believe in you firmly, knowing that you are actually the one who is sustaining our faith, and may we know with confidence that you will be faithful to us always.