If I had to define the last year of my life in one word, “busy” would sum it up sufficiently.
Classes. Work. Young Life. Visiting parents. Weekly meetings. Checking emails. Babysitting. Blogging. Trips. Fitting in time with friends. The to-do lists feel endless.
& the list goes on…
As busy-ness takes over my life, it becomes increasingly easy to avoid my aching heart. Open wounds from the past sit, worsening as I fail to deal with them… a family who has never apologized for harsh words that have cut to my core. A four year relationship coming to an unexpected end. Attending college in a city I had sworn to myself I would leave. Years of hating my body, attempting to forgo eating in the hopes of being prettier and skinnier. Basing all of my worth and identity off of my grade point average and the words of others.
It is incredibly easy to avoid the past when you barely have enough time to think about the present. Yet when I’m not rushing off to the next task on my to-do list and I just sit, my wounds start to throb. I am forced to sit alone in silence and feel the hurt that I have tried to tuck away in a corner for so long.
In the midst of one of those rare moments of silence and solitude this morning, I felt overwhelmed with grief and desperately prayed a prayer that I have never prayed before.
“God, things are so difficult right now and I just don’t know why. From the outside nothing looks out of place but on the inside I feel like my sense of purpose is in a state of rapid decay. I hurt. My heart hurts. I feel empty and I don’t know what to do. I don’t know how to fix this. I can’t even diagnose the problem. I need help.”
When I hurt, I can usually attribute it to a specific event that makes me sad. Lately, everything hurts. It is an ugly mess. All of the suppressed wounds that I have never grieved are surfacing, ready for oxygen, ready to be healed…all at the same time.
Yesterday I bought myself flowers. Yes, really. I’m a sucker for flowers…utterly convinced that they are some of God’s most exquisite creations. As I sat in front of the red daisies on my kitchen table, I remembered a passage in Matthew.
“See how the flowers of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you- you of little faith?
Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has trouble enough of its own.”
I am struck by the weight that such a short passage holds in relation to my life.
How could I be so silly to think that I could happily continue worrying about the future while avoiding the hurt of my past? I have been attempting to work harder, do more, live faster in the hopes of cleaning up, in the hopes of washing white the stains in my past. How could I be so naïve? Just as the flowers of the field do not labor or spin, we are not meant to spend our lives toiling away trying to be beautiful on our own. When we labor and spin, we are a mess. When we rest in God’s embrace, allowing him to enter in and heal our wounds, he makes us beautiful like the flowers of the field.
Today, I will not avoid the solitude and silence. I sit in the presence of the Lord and I allow Him to enter in and diagnose and heal. He takes my work load. He makes me beautiful.