Hello, friends! I have been pretty quiet for the past year in Bloggy World. However, I did manage to finish the first chapter in the Sanders Family Story book! (that’s not what the title of the book will be, but we’ll leave it at that for now because I’m not telling the real title yet). Yes, it took a whole year to finish one chapter. Don’t judge. There are a lot of shiny objects in this world to be distracted by.
I wrote a blog post in February about our move and trying to find my footing. I mentioned that I was going to start running toward the next season. That didn’t happen. I shouldn’t be surprised, I’m not a runner. I seriously loathe running. Why would I say I would run?? If you ever see me running you should run or pray or both; I’ve been overtaken by an evil running spirit or there’s a genuine emergency somewhere. Either way, it’s bad. It turns out I wasn’t supposed to be running (God knows me so well!) I was supposed to be resting.
When we were little, my sister and I used to play this weird game where she’d try to bite me and I’d put the heal of my hand on her forehead to keep her away and unable to bite. Yes, we are very strange, that’s not the point of the story. The point of sharing our strangeness is to give a visual of what I think God was doing to me. I was trying to (sort of) run to something, trying to find “normal” and He plopped His hand on my forehead and said, “Chill out there, chickie.” I think this last year was simply meant as a year of rest. I kept looking for a new routine, a new normal, and never found it because I wasn’t supposed to.
We weren’t meant to get comfortable and we weren’t meant to go tearing off after an unfulfilled calling. There has been a stirring in our hearts these past few months. Something is coming. We’re not sure what it is, but it feels like we are about to walk into a time of promises being fulfilled. These promises won’t fit into the new normal I was hoping to create, they won’t fit into comfortable or predictable. This time we are not supposed to chase after our promises, we are supposed to wait for God to bring them to us.
All of this hit me today. Yep, it took a whole year to come to this revelation. I have been so irritated with the Lord recently. Why on earth does it feel like we are still in the same place we were at this time last year?! Where are these so called promises and provision? I no longer feel like they are impossible. I now feel like they are so simple and easy for the Lord to accomplish that I’m really mad at Him for taking so long!! And that’s when revelation struck: I still have Him stuck in my “Dad Box”.
I don’t think I have ever talked about my relationship with my dad. I’m still trying to figure out how to share it. I don’t want to dishonor him or give people the wrong perception of him because he really is a great guy, but “tense” is probably the best word to describe our relationship. I think what I have experienced is not uncommon and I believe sharing how God has healed my heart will be helpful to others, but I need wisdom in how to go about it. All of that to say, I thought all my Dad Boxes had already been torn apart. I have found a peace and surety as a daughter of Almighty God that I never imagined. I assumed after I had those things that everything else was dealt with. Nope. I am still a Dad approval seeker.
Without realizing it, I kept living like the amount of faith I have and my good deeds were going to please Him and therefore all His promises to me would be fulfilled faster. Even as I type this out I can see and understand this is faulty thinking, but that’s the very fine line of following Christ. It’s the straight and narrow, it’s the working out your own salvation with fear and trembling. Not fear as in being afraid, God’s perfect love casts out that fear, but an awareness of each decision. Listening for His voice in every single situation, even the seemingly mindless ones such as which station to stop at to put gas in your vehicle. You need to have faith, but your faith doesn’t give Him the ability to move. It gives permission, it opens a door to Him, but He has the ability to do whatever He wants whether you have faith or not. Somehow our Christian living dial gets turned just a hair off and all of a sudden we’re living like it’s our faith that gives Him the ability to do something. See the fine line there? We have to have faith, but He can still move without it. I had been living like He couldn’t fulfill His promises to me without my faith; like my good deeds were going to please Him so much He couldn’t help but heap every one of His promises on me all at one time.
So, I was raging at God via conversation with Aaron when it felt like revelation literally slapped me in the face. I’m expecting God to let me down. I’m expecting Him to change His mind and not fulfill any promises because I haven’t been good enough. I have been hoping and waiting, but in the back of my mind, I’m bracing for being let down.
Here is the truth: God is not equivalent to an earthly father, even the very best ones. He is so much better. There is not one account in Scripture where He expects His people to act a certain way, but doesn’t give them specifics. Nowhere does He enact a punishment without giving plenty of warning and mercy time after time. He isn’t sitting back waiting for us to fail so He can take the thing we’ve looked forward to the most to “teach us a lesson”. He is cheering us on! In every moment He is declaring over us the truth of who we are, the person He truly created us to be. He is the perfect Father, our personal trainer, the One who believes in us the most.
Let God crush the boxes you’ve been keeping Him in. Welcome the beautiful destruction into your life. It hurts, really really bad. Sometimes you’re given a “breather”, you think all the boxes have been broken and you have rest, then another one appears. Let Him break it again. Because beholding the beauty of Who He is, having an unhindered relationship with the Mighty God, a God not smashed into a box of human making, far outweighs any temporary pain we experience on this earth.