Family

When Will We Get There, My Lord?

The valley…

It’s been long and painful for myself and a good deal of people around me right now. People that I love dearly. Not to sound bleak or depressing, because there are glimpses of light here and there. And I know all of life’s seasons won’t be as trying as this one.

But, damn.

A few weeks ago, I wrote a poem during perhaps my biggest crisis of faith thus far. One day, I’ll be able (and allowed) to share so much more with whoever reads these things, but for now… for now, a glimpse into the desperate recesses of my heart.

_____________________________________

A thousand times and then some more, my soul gives out and You carry it across these deserts and through scorched valleys. 

When will we come to water, my Lord?

These glimpses feel like mirages dried up like the dust, and just as the dust forms spinning cones, so my head is a storm. And when the storm comes through, it levels my heart and all of it’s towers. I have more than one  tower of Babel, my Lord. But of course, you know it to be so. 

Sure, I’ve asked You to make it new, but never I imagined it to be such an occasion as this. What a devastation to the actual soul that sits in my bones somewhere between my spirit and my flesh. 

This is far too much to bare, and just like my towers, You know this to be true as well. Which is why You stand waiting for the candle’s flame to die out. For You scoop up the ashes, as black and lifeless as they are, and You carry them with your hands across the land of death and into a new place, a place I’ve not been before. 

When will we get there, my Lord?

Flashback Friday: Singing Songs Together

Do You Want To Build A Snowman? // JATW

 

Yesterday morning I decided to go for a jalk (a walk/jog because #ImOutOfShape), and I was already fighting off the feelings of failure. As the endorphins started to coarse through my veins and the pain in my chest, legs and feet were making me aware that I was very much alive, I passed this piece of paper on the ground. As I abruptly came to a pause and looked down at it, a smile creeped across my face.

Do You Wanna Build a Snowman? :)

I don’t know if some day-dreamy little girl decided to write that and put it there intentionally, or if it fell out of her backpack as she walked home from school the day prior. I’ll never know why it was there in the middle of the street, but what I do know is that it made me think of a good things both then and now.

I don’t have a lot of happy memories involving my family from my childhood, and I don’t say that out of self loathing (I already went through that phase), but it’s just the truth. So when something small allows me to reminisce on sweet moments from my younger days, I take full advantage of it.

From birth to when I was in 8th-ish grade, we didn’t have a radio in our car. It’s really weird to think of that now, but it was quite the 90’s #FirstWorldProblem at the time. Since we didn’t have any tunes to listen and sing to while daring the battlefield of US1’s traffic every day, a lot of times my mom and I sang whatever song would come to mind. She ALWAYS found the harmony, which is probably where I get it from. It was nice, because we would try to make the sounds of the instruments too, inevitably running out of breath from laughter. When my sister grew old enough, she joined in as well. A major hit in our tiny, blue Honda was Bohemian Rhapsody by Queen. Man! Could we sing the hell outta that song and laugh uncontrollably…

Together.

In recent months, Abe has started to remember and recite (or sing) phrases and songs that he hears more than once. It’s something you don’t ever think about until you watch a small human being sing a song. It’s phenomenal to me, that this once-baby who had no idea what language was, let alone words set to music, can now sing songs that HE MEMORIZES.

So, we drive a Volvo from 1991. It does have a radio, but last year when a tree fell on our car, it broke the long metal thingy that allowed us to receive most radio waves. With the exception of a fuzzy sounding 94.3, we have no radio.

And guess what we do now?

We sing. We sing A LOT. Even Daniel! And as of late, our car is filled with the Webb’s rendition of Frozen. I don’t care if it’s cliche and I don’t care if you think it’s stupid, because I adore it. We sing together, and we replace words with “fart” together, and we laugh together. If Abe or Daniel grabs the melody, I grab the harmony. Sometimes we will scream the songs, and sometimes I will pretend I’m Julie Andrews and sing with her voice. Every now and then, Daniel’s “Scott Stapp” makes a vocal appearance, and… well, you can only imagine.

That piece of paper with those 6 words on it not only reminded me of something good from the past, but it also reminds me of how good I have it now.

I need those reminders, because I’m kind of an a-hole and it’s really easy for me to forget all of the good in the midst of ol’ regular life that feels hard a lot of the time.

What’s your favorite childhood memory?

 

 

This is nothing new.

-MLW

 

Crying.

I am uncomfortable and a little scared to start this post, which means it’s probably something I definitely have to write.

My mind goes blank when it knows it has to do something it doesn’t want to do, so I figured I’d just start it off by telling the truth about that.

There. The beginning is out of the way now. I started.

I’ve noticed something about people, and while there are a few exceptions to the rule, pretty much the general consensus seems to be that crying equals weakness. And we’d rather be damned than look weak. I’ve been a part of many conversations where a person is sharing something painful, and wants to cry, but can’t. They’ve shut that useful tool down a long time ago. I’ve even had several people tell me that they don’t want to cry because they don’t want pity, or to come across as weak. People just flat out say it.

What’s funny to me is that we are completely blind to the illusion that we are strong to begin with.

Don’t get me wrong, I struggle with this too. And while I am more comfortable with crying in front of others than a lot of people, I still hide it or force myself to swallow it, because I too believe the lie that I’ve got it handled. This comes into play when I’m around Daniel. It is excruciatingly difficult to cry in front of my husband.

Last night I was sitting at the computer, working on an overwhelming amount of Beard Sauce orders after a hectic week of helping my mom and brother move up here, Thanksgiving and Black Friday madness. For some reason I really wanted to listen to Miley’s Wrecking Ball song.

Side note: I know several of you just judged me so hard. But it’s one of the most honest songs I’ve heard in a really long time. For some reason, when celebrities or musicians “act out” or “go crazy”, Christians seem to feel entitled to judge them just as harshly as everyone else does, and it runs rampant on Social Media . Keep in mind that our right to our grace-less opinions died when we decided to pick up our crosses and follow Christ. That’s just as much for me as it is for anyone else, and I apologize for being a judgmental a-hole in the past just to get a laugh.

So, like I said, I was listening to Wrecking Ball, and I just started weeping. The first time I watched the music video, it was also the first time I had heard the song. It made me tear up then, but last night…

I process pain with two things: by listening to music and crying. I’ve been that way my whole life. The song pushes down on the nerve, causing incredible pain and forcing me to feel. Crying is a release of all the emotions and thoughts that have been stuck. When it’s over, I feel light and clear.

It’s a beautiful process, really. But I will subconsciously refuse to listen to music a lot of the time (even though it’s my favorite thing in the world) because I know what it’s going to do to me, and I don’t feel like being “weak.”

It’s not necessarily the content of the song that got me. It’s the fact that a human being is being verbal about how another human being destroyed her.

We destroy each other.

I’ve seen a lot of that lately, more specifically with my family. Evils I didn’t really believe in or understand until now are a part of my life.

Demons whisper lies into our ears, and we believe them. Then we tear each others hearts out, and leave the souls of our victims choking for life.

We wonder why people uses harsh substances to get through the day.

And while I have hope that the lights will be turned back on and souls will be restored, it doesn’t change the fact that there’s a lot of darkness hanging out right now.

We are all weak, every last one of us. Crying is an act of submission. It means that we’d rather do the uncomfortable thing that might help us gain a little bit of freedom. You can be an emotional person (like myself) and cry a lot, and still refuse to submit when it really counts. Even though I cried a lot last night, I didn’t do it in front of Daniel and I didn’t even tell him about it. I hid it, and I want to confess that. He’s the person I should be the most comfortable being weak in front of, but when you grow up not being able to trust anyone that’s supposed to love you, that’s kinda difficult.

But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience. Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words.  And he who searches hearts knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God.  And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose. –Romans 8:25-28

I always think about these verses when I am so filled with sorrow and I’m crying so hard that there are no words to be said.

So, I don’t know, that’s what I’ve got today. I have no idea how to end this one as much as I had no idea how to start it.

Why don’t you cry?