A smarter woman than I recently pointed out that betrayal is such a dark beast, in part, because it digs into and stains every memory of that relationship. It causes you to second guess your own faculties with regard to how and IF you trust.
In an attempt to avoid self-examination, I’ve been doing some medicating here lately with general life-busyness, a good bit of Netflix and copious amounts of Sonic raspberry sweet tea (like, way, WAY too much sweet tea). I know that when that kind of thing starts going down, there must be some seriously ugly stuff that needs sorting through in my heart, so here goes.
See, tonight, I sat in a room full of maybe a hundred folks who purposely left their warm Sunday afternoon homes and drove, some for half an hour or more, through cold, wet interstates to gather for prayer, to ask for God to hear them, to hear US, and to answer.
Leaders asked prayers for members who are about to trek across the frozen Siberian landscape to share the warmth of the Gospel with a people who don’t yet know their God loves them . . . So we prayed.
Husbands tearfully asked for their wives to be healed, for their children to be whole . . . So we prayed.
Elders requested God’s wisdom in big decisions that lie ahead for the sheep they so carefully seek to shepherd . . . So we prayed.
I’m new to this family of believers, and although I don’t know most of these people, they seem so kind, so in tune with the Spirit, so ready to be given for the Kingdom. The Bride is beautiful.
But then, in the middle of that beauty, a dark voice in the back of my mind:
“But you know you can’t trust them.”
I’m so sick of that voice. It’s crippling.
The last year has been really hard, that’s all. It’s a tough pill to swallow when a safe, accepting, TRUST-worthy place suddenly turns dark and foreign and abrasively unwelcoming. I know, it happens sometimes, we fail one another. But it still hurts. And it slaughters the propensity to trust.
And yet TRUST is an absolute necessity among the Saints. Even if I’m stuck, my heart all plugged up. So I try to remember that God provides. God provides. God provides.
And yet the pain is so real, sometimes it speaks ugly, destructive words into a beautiful moment of opening.
What I am left with every time this wave sweeps over (besides a big pile of tissues and puffy eyes), what I am holding most tightly to tonight, is a promise, His promise that healing WILL come . . . eventually. And I do personally know this well, because many years ago, there was an abused, broken, skeptical young woman who went off to college and met a cute boy who loved God and could sing, and she learned to trust again. It felt like a miracle. It was. A good God does things like that for His people, for His purposes.
So, yes, I know it will come someday. Someday. But the meantime is just a profoundly sad time. I keep going back to this line in Andrew Peterson’s “The Rain Keeps Falling”:
“I’m dying to live, but I’m learning to wait.”
Learning to wait. Waiting to live again. Because He is faithful. Because eventually you must touch bottom and begin coming up. Because trust must be genuine and God-given. And because the beauty of His Bride is worth even the scars.