Creative Commons, photo courtesy of Vinoth Chandar

It’s Not Mine

Recently I’ve been baffled. I discovered that some of my nearest and dearest think I’m strong. This is certainly not a word I would associate with myself.

Ultimately, I’d be fooling you all if I claimed I was a strong person;

I cry {a lot}

I get angry, with small trivial things & massive life changing things

I find it insanely hard to pray, especially for myself, because then I run the risk of my hopes being shattered

I blame myself

I blame God

& I cry {a lot}

I feel so broken & fragile. I don’t feel strong at all. But to those of you who do see even a nugget of strength in me I need you to know what, or more to the point WHO that strength really is.

About a year ago Ben & I were at a conference. The speaker was talking about vulnerability. He spoke about a passage in the Bible where Jesus meets a woman at a well. Jesus goes there specifically at this time to speak with her. Usually this woman would avoid people. She was a social outcast. The passage doesn’t go into huge detail, but it’s evident that this woman is broken. She is fragile. But Jesus listens to her, he looks at her and at that moment she knows he truly sees HER. He gets it, he gets her brokenness, her pain and even her shame. The woman is so stunned she drops the jar she’d filled with water & runs to tell everyone who she has met & how her life is transformed from that one encounter.

After talking about this, the speaker invited us to close our eyes and imagine we were at the well. {I just want to point out, at this point I was getting pretty peckish, as it was nearing lunch time – so I was trying hard to not think through sandwich fillings & crisp options}

I closed my eyes. I imagined Jesus walking towards me. Sitting beside me & then looking into my eyes. And BAM! I wept & wept. I proceeded to cry for almost an hour. {& yes, I forgot about that sandwich!}

I still can’t completely articulate all that emotion, but what I do know is that at that very moment I became so incredibly aware of how great God’s love is for me. I saw how much my pain hurts him to. I saw that he weeps for me. How mad is that Jesus weeps for me?! INSANE! And, what’s more, with all the big fat mess, the hurt, the pain, the grief, the miscarriages and the brokenness {yes, ALL OF IT} he well and truly gets it. He understands.

That moment has been of unimaginable strength to me.

Yes, God is my strength. If you see any ounce of strength in me, it’s not through my own doing but God’s.

He is the one drying my tears with hope & joy.

He is the one who calms my anger.

He is the one who allows me to sit in silence while he listens to my heart’s desire.

He is the one who reminds me that I’m fearfully & wonderfully made, even when my body does fail.

He is the one who reminds me that he’s walking alongside me & that he gets me.

He is the one who allows me to get angry.

He is the one who gives me true freedom.

He is my salvation & I need you to know that. Not just so you know where my strength comes from, but so you know he’s there for you too. He gets you. He gets your joys and pains and he longs to show you his love, comfort, joy, peace & so much more.

My health may fail & my spirit may grow weak, but God remains the strength of my heart, he remains forever.
Psalm 73:26