There’s a sweetness in my soul that’s been simmering for the past few weeks. It’s the kind of sweetness that can only come from the hand of God but it’s still been nothing short of rough.
My soul has been seared with the heat of some bitter tears and I’ve needed more time to sort through my “stuff” so I didn’t just use this space to spew some narcissistic angst or rant to garner attention and somehow temporarily salve my shredded soul.
I don’t want to waste these precious moments on trivialities when there’s so much to be gained from patience and “pleroma”…the fullness that only God can bring about when we wait upon him. And in this time of waiting and sorting I’m discovering the truth of C.S. Lewis’ Aslan when he told us that this “Great Lion” is not safe but He’s worth it. Oh yes, God is so worth it.
This verse from Joel has marked me deeply for I am one who’s been “rent”. My heart has been torn in two. And here’s the beautiful and most perplexing thing: I didn’t tear it. No, God did. He moved me to give it to Him and Him alone and then; He tore it. It may sound callous or cruel but really, it’s the most beautiful, loving and necessary thing He could do.
Torn in two and ripped from top to bottom like the temple curtain on the day that Jesus died. The day God, himself through Jesus’ powerful, in-the-beginning-Logos words said: “IT IS FINISHED!”, and tore that curtain of separation down, down down, forever opening the channel of communication between Himself and His children. Unveiled and opened. Naked and unashamed again. And this is also why he rends the hearts given to Him. Because our hearts tend to be veiled as well and so God says “return to Me, give Me your heart and let me rend it for you.”
And rent I am… because I am His.
God has given me a vision. A big vision of Himself…a God-sized vision that truthfully, as one dear friend once told me, would scare me to death if I could see it all at once. And in order to receive the fullness of that vision, so much of me has to die so He can take His place. This is where the rending comes in…as he finds the bits of sin, selfishness, pride, envy and malice, manipulation and fear….he tears that bit out of me and replaces it with more of Himself.
And it hurts. The whole thing hurts. But even while it’s happening, I trust Him because He never fails me and I know, I really do know that none of the pain will be wasted even when I don’t understand why or how just yet. So I submit to His hand again and to the best of my ability, I wait.
The other day I was standing at the kitchen sink washing dishes with a particularly heavy heart and found myself singing a tune lodged somewhere in the back of my soul:
“All of You, is more than enough for all of me. For every thirst and every need. You satisfy me with your love. Till all I have in You is more than enough.”
and I stopped right there and thought hard about that. What was I singing? What was I feeling? Did I mean it? In the midst of this moment of my life..was God my “more than enough”? In the midst of my disappointment, this ache and my mess? And I am learning the most important lesson of all: Yes, I do mean it…God really is more than enough.
So much of what has had to be dealt with in me has been “good stuff” held in bad, idolatrous places. In the life of another, these things might be just fine but God continues to sift my soul for the finer grains of gold. Because, someone wiser than me once said that sometimes we settle for many “good” things instead of the better God things. Sometimes we settle for what we think we can handle when God’s got so much more in mind.
And that’s where I am: a girl undone. Rent and spent and quite nearly at the end of myself to the place where God will do His best work in, through and in spite of me. And I’m SO thankful.
It’s gonna be beautiful and very much worth the wait. I want that. I really want that for you too.
“Even now,” declares the LORD “return to me with all your heart…”