Monday, October 10, 2011

Pain + Joy= Growth

I am tempted to run to despair mode when things get thrown in my face all at once... Remembering the truth of the Gospel gets difficult in the tough times and clinging to hope is desperate. It does feel easier to just add up all of the losses lately and throw my hands in the air but the problem with doing this is that I forget the good and joyful moments that sit in those times. I was on my way home tonight, feeling vulnerable and upset about a few things, one in particular was the loss of another family member this month and the situation that surrounds it... and, of course, because cops love me, I get pulled over. I'm not one of those girls that gets out of tickets, and this time I cried and didn't care at all what he thought. All I was thinking was... "Great. Just another check on the "Let's kick Katie when she's down list". The police officer didn't even check to see if I was alright (I had tears streaming down my face), told me some mess about reading an envelope to pay the fine, drove off quickly, and something inside of me just fell apart. I cried the entire way home. All I wanted was a hug, someone to tell me it was going to be o.k., and then I started thinking about potential loneliness in the next stage of my life and I just about lost it completely. (Yes, I know how ridiculous this can sound... welcome to the inner thoughts of my mind)
Praise the Lord that He just put his hands on my face, told me that I was His and that was all that mattered. I was reminded of something I read today:

It feels right to me that life
Must have balance, that good
Times and hard times are
Meticulously measured out, for it is
Only in the blend of both
That we grow...
That wholeness comes,
That we know how to laugh
With others
And how to cry.
Substance in the human heart
Is built... nurtured... so much
More by pain and failure
And disappointment
Than by happiness and joy, yet God, in
Infinite wisdom, understands what
Our limits are and never
Tries us more than we can handle.- Ann Kiemel Anderson, This Is a Story about God

Amidst the mess, the last 3 weeks have been wonderful and a huge encouragement to my soul. I have laughed harder, smiled bigger, and experienced the gift of delight and joy more than I have in the last 3 years. All of these things so quickly get forgotten when darkness tries to seep back into my soul. However, I can stand up, even with tears in my eyes, and trust that the God that knows my heart better than any man or woman, is leading me down a path that is fulfilling and glorious. He has to be enough. He IS enough.

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