Thursday, January 24, 2013

Two Years

Two years ago today, my baby brother was only one week and three days old. It had only been one week and three days since our house burned down and only one week and three days since I had seen the ugly side of the police force. The side that only criminals are supposed to see. On this day two years ago we were still living with our friends and my parents were still in the hospital struggling to keep our baby brother safe. Struggling to keep their son in their arms. It was a dark time. An uncertain and frightful time. Almost equal to the year when we first moved to Missouri. That year our family went through what seemed like Hell on earth. The questions, the doubts, the accusations I flung at God. "What are you doing?!" Anger and confusion was my first reaction. Then about a week after it happened something clicked. God spoke to me and then I knew that my life had been changed irrevocably for the good.


These two years have disappeared so fast. Everything has melded together into one big ongoing story. Babies birth, house fire, government intrusion, rental house, Dad's heart attack, our 2012 winter trip, when I got my glasses and saw the leaves on the trees individually for the first time, a summer back on our land, and then our attempted move to Belize. Now God has just dropped us off back down South where I grew up. I cannot fathom why God would have put all of this into my life in just two years. Why did he plan it like this?

During these two years and especially the earlier part, these two portions of Scripture have played an enormous part in my life.

Jeremiah 29:11 "I know the plans I have for you," says the LORD "plans of good and not evil, to give you a future and a hope."

James 1:2-4 My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into diverse temptations; knowing this, that the trying of your faith produces patience. But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing.

You cannot imagine what peace and comfort these words have given me. In a time when my world was being bashed to a million pieces in the angry roar of Providence's frowning sea - this is where I found His smiling face. I was happy! I was at peace! I was free! Sometimes when I thought about this I could have danced all over the yard. I would laugh spontaneously. When I was hanging out laundry, when the wind blew, when I looked at the blue sky. My siblings would look at me and ask why I laughed. I don't know what I said. But oh my, praise God! What love He has shown me!

But not to give the wrong impression, my life wasn't perfect. There were times when I would get this strange feeling. I would long for something but I didn't know what. Once I confided to a friend. "I want to be IN the world." I would find myself angry at nothing. I would be snappy to my siblings, and then I would run to my Bible. I NEED my Lord. Reading His word would bring me to tears to think of what He has done for me. Sometimes I would sit speechless, my thoughts all befuddled almost unable to actually think that it was true.
Yes I have grown up with God my entire life, and I have always been his child ever since I can remember. But I have been the prodigal son for the past four years or so and coming back was something beyond words.

Today that story is still happening. What in the world is going to happen next? Seriously, I wouldn't be surprised if we decided to take a spaceship to the moon, or permanently live on a cruise ship. I don't know when it will end or when it will ALL make sense. I can't seem to measure my time by years or birthdays anymore. My timeline doesn't have dates but huge bullet points when something happened. The years are in parenthesis.

Right now we are in Alabama. Will we stay here? I am not sure. Life is so uncertain but God is always there. Never ever will He leave me or forsake me. Why are we in Alabama? Why not Louisiana or South Carolina? What about Florida? How long will we be here? What will we do? What about our church in Missouri? Do I really have to say goodbye? My life is full of questions. But I am content to wait for the answers.

And to think that all of this started only two years ago. Two years! -it seems like yesterday- Two years! -can't blink- TWO YEARS!
(Would you like to join me as my jaw drops and I fall over backwards flat on the floor?)

My life. Chock full of blessings. Innumerable. I've also had quite a few trials.

Q. What is your only comfort in life and in death?
A. That I am not my Own,
but belong body and soul, in life and in death-
to my faithful Savior Jesus Christ.
He has fully paid for all my sins with his precious blood,
and has set me free from the tyranny of the devil.
He also watches over me in such a way
that not a hair can fall from my head
without the will of my Father in heaven:
in fact, all things must work together for my salvation.                            

Because I belong to him,
Christ, by his Holy Spirit,
assures me of eternal life
and makes me wholeheartedly willing and ready
from now on to live for him.
 
Heidleberg Catechism Question One

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