humble pieWell, wouldn’t you know that my first step into this uncharted territory would need to be changed? For all of you who read “Where to from here?” before 11:30am PST on Tuesday I need to tell you that the post has been altered – and I apologize for the presumption that was originally there.

My usual routine is to write the article, let it sit for a day or two while I process the content in my mind, make any adjustments that are needed and then post it on-line.  Not so with that one!  It had been forever since I posted anything and I really wanted to get something out, so the “processing” element was nixed.  Bad move.

After it was up, I couldn’t get it off my mind and to say it wasn’t sitting well would be an understatement.  My disquiet about giving the impression that “life is just peachy” was confirmed when I told Tim about the changes I had made to the post and he said, “I wondered when you said that life is so perfect for you.”  He’s the one who lives with me – he knows how life really is!  So again, I apologize to all you who read the first version.  I believe the way it reads now is more authentic.

In His grace, God has very kindly corrected my skewed perception of life, blessing, pain, and relationship with Him over these last few days.  For me, life is completely different than it was 2 years ago; but these last 2 mornings as I’ve woken up I was right back to very familiar feelings and thoughts.  Thoughts like:  I don’t need to get up to read and pray; I’ll be fine without that and my bed is so comfortable.  It was almost eerie how I morphed back to exactly what I felt 2 years ago.  I’ve often had smells take me back in time – this was the first time I’ve noticed a thought doing the same thing.  That scared me enough to get my attention. I chose to get up; I chose to not believe the lie (I do need to begin my day choosing to let Jesus be Lord of me again – choosing to obey, choosing to put myself under His authority again).

As for all the hardship I see in the lives around me – I completely disregarded the incredible work of grace and beauty God is mysteriously accomplishing in them.  Life is so not about freedom to the easy life; life is about living every day in relationship with our Creator, our Redeemer, our only true Lover, the only true God, the One who acts on behalf of those who wait on Him.

God drove the nail into that coffin for me during my regular morning Bible study when I was stopped in my tracks with Jesus’ words, "My soul is overwhelmed with sorrow to the point of death."  He was captive to nothing except the will of His Father.  Earlier he told His disciples, "I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world."

We will have trouble in this life. (There’s an understatement!)  But to live in the trouble with Him as our source of peace is a thing of beauty:

  • Beauty because it makes no sense to anyone looking on,

  • Beauty because it’s not logical,

  • Beauty because it’s speaks so loudly of strength and hope and security in knowing we are loved.
To live freely from the truth of being loved, trusting your Father who acts
  • in the trouble
    • with the poor health
      • with the child suffering from mental illness
        • with the prospects of being alone in life
          • with the betrayal

is where relationship is grown with this God of ours whom we cannot see with our eyes, yet who becomes eminently visible as we invite Him into our mess.  When we believe Him and obey Him He brings beauty and wholeness at the right time so that even our wildest dreams are surpassed beyond belief.

My prayer for each one of us is that we will choose to “Praise Him in this Storm,” declaring our trust in His faithful goodness by what we do.  Thank-you Father for reminding me that this honest, authentic living isBetter Than a Hallelujah.”

Simply Susan