I obviously lived in a delusion that that Old Testament did not apply to me.
Joseph had dreams of his family bowing down to him. Sounded great...until he found out that meant sibling rivalry that landed him in a pit, slavery, and prison.
Abraham was called the Father of Many Nations and then asked to put his only son on a pile of wood and sacrifice him.
David was anointed king, but he had to face his own family's jealousy, an angry monarch, and a giant before he could sit on a throne.
Really, what made me think I got to be the exception?
My dreams for life were simple. I've wanted to be a writer for as long as I can remember. I've always loved speaking and teaching, and once I was married, I wanted to be a great wife and mom. I dreamed of a great marriage that served as an example for others, and I dreamed of having the perfect family.
Over the years, I have had dreams (like Joseph), and people have said or prayed things (like David), and I believed God promised things (like Abraham). I truly believed all of those things said my desires were God's desires, and as such, life would progress in a linear fashion, dreams would become reality, and all would be good.
While I do still believe my heart's desires are God's desires, too, my dreams slammed into the reality that life isn't linear, and sometimes the road to the promises makes no sense. Sometimes it doesn't just hit a few bumps. Sometimes it goes right off the cliff.
Like when my husband moved out.
For the last two weeks my blog has been quiet as I have tried to figure out what to say when I have said repeatedly that God can heal, restore, and redeem anything, and yet, my marriage that I have fought for so hard has come apart at the seams. In light of such obvious evidence that God is not in absolute control and that people can make painful choices, what can be said?
I didn't know, except I do, and I say...
God can heal, restore, and redeem anything.
It is one thing to make that proclamation when life is running along its linear path, but when the world comes down, it is a whole different thing. The first comes from a place of comfort. The second, from a place of faith.
The truth is a lot of damage has been done in my marriage, and I will tell you honestly that it will take a miracle for it to be put back together. However, I have come to realize that God's promises are not void simply because they do not look as I thought they would. God makes promises of the end, not the journey.
He promises prosperity but gives no clarity on the hard work required to get there.
He offers eternal life but does not detail the daily deaths required of it.
He gives love but gives no specific number of people who will hate you.
He extends mercy but does not mention the pain of humbling oneself to receive it.
The plans are for our good. The journey is for our stretching...dying...believing...
If only faith came easier. If only promises came with magic wands.
But there are no magic wands. Only a wondrous God who heals, restores, and redeems...no matter how hard, impossible, or painful the circumstances might be.
This isn't the road I would have chosen. It looks nothing like what I planned, but God's plans have not changed. They are still good. He is still God, and I know...
He can still heal, restore, and redeem anything...