When life’s nothing like the brochure.

Life as we knew it changed in 2012.

Suddenly the road ahead became obscured, like looking through the windscreen when the rain is pelting down. Everything blurred. Our plans undone, our view hidden. Then confusion came running, wanting to wrap is spindly arms around me as I struggled with ‘what now?’ My little cottage dream shattered, now floating out to sea and on the incoming tide came unwelcome feelings of abandonment when, for a moment, I forgot who I belonged to.

Has God really let this happen to us?

Perhaps you’re going through the valley, trudging over a mountain, going through the fire and you’re asking yourself those very words.

I can’t answer that but I have to believe that God is good and he is kind and although, for us, things didn’t go as we’d planned and yes, “life, was nothing like the brochure”.  Deep down I knew God would make good out of our misfortune.

We set off into unchartered waters, holding tightly to hope and words from the good book penned for our help. “For I know the plans I have for you,” says the LORD. They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.”

To be honest, more than five years on, this season continues to be anything but easy. After wading through painful goodbyes, leaving our ‘familiar’ some years ago, we look set to venture into the unknown yet again. All those feelings are rushing back like a flood gate opening after long rains. Oh how I long for smooth sailing.

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Days of faith are often overshadowed by hardship and heaviness. I struggle to make sense of it all. We share our story and it seems almost unbelievable,  like one of those bad knife adds – you know the one I mean, the one where they promise you a bonus deal with your purchase. Except this wasn’t the ‘extra blessing deal’ – this was the ‘you’re getting an extra trial deal – another trip down the valley deal’ and perhaps we’ll ‘throw in a little walk through the fire deal too!’ So ridiculous that we learned to laugh in the face of it.

We heard “Count it all joy” genuine words spoken to comfort by dear ones trying to understand. We learned quickly that it was best to smile and offer thanks.  Sometimes, lover and I would come away and look into each others eyes, through tears say, “I see you, I see you.” It sounds very dramatic now, but at the time this line from the movie “The Avatar”  became our ‘catch cry’, calming our inner turmoil and telling us “ it’s going to be ok”.

So today, if you’re finding it hard to understand why your life isn’t quite like the brochure – I want to say “I see you”

“I SEE YOU”

Wherever you’re at, what ever you’re going through – I want you to know ‘you are seen’ and you’re journey is not insignificant.  Take the life line. Believe that God is good and although it might not seem like it when you’re wading through mud, stumbling through fire, trust he will bring you through.

Can my words help you while you walk through your valley? I hope so.

All I can do is bare my heart and tell you I’ve struggled too, really struggled but I’m still falling into Him. I want to say “it’s ok, you’ll get through this, but maybe only on your knees. This may be your Valley of Baca – your Valley of Weeping.

Tears “out” will keep your heart soft and water the parched ground trying to take over your soul.

and tho I’ve cried a thousand tears and still I cry, I can’t help but look to God. He’s been there too often to know that he wont show up again. The author and the finisher of my faith. The beginning and the end. The Alpha and Omega. He’s got this. He’s got us.

My prayer is that the blessing of God will continue to flow over you and as tears fill your pools, springs will come up in your desert, wastelands will become watered fields, flowers will appear and you’ll singing again. Songs of Solomon 2:11-12

A few words I penned just yesterday

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