As I sit down to write today, I am convicted.
Convicted by the Lord that so often, I look at my circumstances more than I look at my Maker.
Case in point: the other day, on a beautiful island, I’m numb. Attempting to hide from the plethora of emotions that could bubble up and over at any point, I have instead decided to feel nothing. And by “decided” I mean that my coping mechanism (self-reliance) is on the prowl. She wants badly for me to choose her; and so, the moment that I’m conflicted, she steps in. Numbness tumbles over my body and my mind. I am safe again…
Or am I?
Is there anything about parenting a child – any child – that is actually safe my precious friend? Love is absolutely the least safe place and space to live. Yet, as a mother, father, nurturer, caregiver, we are asked daily to choose it. To choose to live in the least safe place in the world. A place that can wreck us in all the worst ways.
And all the best ones.
I believe there is this precarious rite of passage that no one speaks of… and it’s timing looks different to each and all of us. This is the passage from loving as a person looking to receive something back… to loving – truly dying to one’s own selfish wants and genuine needs – as a person looking for nothing in return.
Which brings me to my walk last week.
Numbed-out by the tumultuous few weeks before we took flight – and absolutely emotionally exhausted by the child I aim to be loved-by (wince) – I chanted the words “Help Me” over and over as I pounded the boardwalk above the most beautiful ocean I’ve ever seen. One foot. Help. Second foot. Me. Over and over again.
And then the words I was needing to hear punched me in the gut.
Am I looking at Him or at her?
Some days her is my daughter.
Some days her is old pain.
Some days her is present darkness.
And some, it’s imaginary circumstances. Like the fact the last time we traveled and had a balcony, my Wild girl struggled with thoughts of self-harm… Which included jumping from said balcony. So as I power-walked the island, I worried. (Did Scott remember to lock the door?)
Until I didn’t anymore.
And He did. Just knowing my eyes weren’t where they needed to be made the rest of the trip a precious one. The numbness didn’t radically disappear; but instead it was slowly displaced by an inner peace. No goosebumps or enthusiastic celebration from my cells. Just… peace.
May you find your peace today too, beautiful soul. May your circumstances not rob you of your birthright – a peace that surpasses all present events and past ones.
You are more than what you experience. And you were made for this. Whatever this is right now. Do you believe it?
If not yet, I implore of you to tap into two simple words (Help Me) and see what happens. When life knocks us on our knees, it just might be time to look up.
Cheering you on.