Saturday, June 4, 2016

parking lot friends

I am thinking about Mary today.  She must have had a different plan in mind for herself, don't you think? I mean, don't you think that right before that angel appeared she might have had a different dream for herself? For Joseph? Because nobody dreams about the unexpected, the hard, the detour, the stepping out into the unknown.  Nobody dreams of embracing fear and losing control and handing everything...I mean everything over to a God you can not even see, and although you love Him and believe in still...on those really bad days, I am ashamed to say...doubt.

Are you real God, because why... I mean why THIS?

We have all thought that, right?
Please tell me yes, or I will feel badly about myself.

We lost our farmhouse.
It is a long stupid story that involves all sorts of people that need our prayers, but yeah.
We are moving.

I can ask why.
I can doubt.
I can cry.
I can think my life is so darn unfair.
And I did.
Just ask the dogs.
They were very concerned about me.

But standing in the church parking lot for an hour with girlfriends who are praying for me...getting texts from across the country from friends who are praying for me...being told "I am on my way up to my room to pray for you right now" from a dear Sister in Christ who I have never met in person...talking about a plan with parents over frozen yogurt who for years have been praying for answers that WHY question, doesn't it?

I mean...prayer...people praying...friends drawing closer to Christ in the hopes that I am drawn closer to Christ...I mean, good grief, how awesome is that?

No one wants to suffer.
But we all do.
Why suffer??
Because suffering always leads to love.
Because suffering brings people together, makes hearts stronger, puts everything in its proper order.
Don't argue with me on this. Because I am right.

I mean...why Mary?
Why Jesus?

It is the why that brings me to my knees, and puts beads in my hands.
It is the why that leads me to scripture, to His Word, to the truth I need to hear.

I can sit and stew and dwell in the why, or I can thank God for it, love it, and look at the because...

because you will get thought this..
because Mary had her plans changed, and look at what happened to her...she gave birth to GOD...
because Jesus always provides a way out...
because no trial that comes to me is bigger than I can handle...
because I do not have to worry...because He will fight for me...

because I have this amazing band of women friends, faith filled ladies..who do not just SAY they are praying, but actually ARE praying.  And I have my parking lot friends...who for the last two weeks have sat by my side at morning Mass...who have been such a comfort...who have opened my eyes to the blessing they are...and that losing them would be far worse than losing a house...

This move was a blindside and not my plan at all.
But it moved me in more ways that you can ever know...

it moved me to a place of true peace and trust.
It moved me to a deeper love of my friends and family.
It moved me to where I need to be...focused on the others in my life, and not on the things I possess.

I am so blessed.
This farmhouse is doubt.
But it doesn't move me the way a prayerful husband or girlfriend does.
It doesn't love me the way a woman on her knees praying for me does.

And how did I ever get to this a place where I feel so covered, so protected, so sure of the people that matter in my life?
Why am I so blessed?
Perhaps that is the WHY I should be questioning?

If you do not have a band of faith filled friends, find some.
Then hang out in the parking lot with them.
But pick a well lit parking lot...not a dark creepy one...that is not safe.
Like a church, or a Whole Foods parking lot...and during the daytime.

And if you do not like the change in your life that has blind sighted you, why not embrace it?
Kick and scream and cry first, that is okay and totally normal and acceptable. You can even throw in a bag of chips and salsa and a few glasses of wine...totally cool with that.
But then...stop.
Put the chips down.
Or, if you ate them all, throw the bag away so no one knows what a pathetic mess you are.
And give in to it.
Give in to Him.
Give in to the why.
Picture Mary.
Cry out to her because dang, that woman knows how you feel.
And sister...just trust.
Memorize scripture.
Marinate in His Word.

God knows what He is doing.
He is the writer of your story, so just go along with it.
Don't ask why...just lean into the because.

And then...give thanks.

Thank you God for a beautiful year in a beautiful home,  but most of all, for my parking lot friends, who carried me through this mess of a chapter, and who will be by my side, preferably with glasses of wine in hand, poolside, in the pages yet to come.