Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding.
My mantra, for today.
It is my understanding that fails. I cannot trust it at all.
I'm back to blogging and don't really know where to begin. I thought about abandoning the whole idea after such a long absence, but there are so many things happening these days - some wonderful, some difficult - that I want to record, remember, contemplate, and share. So, I think I'll come back.
I have not blogged since the loss of my brother. He died on January 21, 2010.
I sat down several times to write and always discarded my work for one reason: the words felt so dull. It was as if they were not alive enough, good enough, rich enough, true enough, to describe what was happening. So I quit trying. I wrote letters to Blake instead and somehow that was more comforting and carried less pressure.
I could probably write a book about the things I've been through since losing my brother to suicide. If you've ever been there, you know what I mean. To be completely cliche, it's a roller coaster of emotions. Different trials every day. I won't try to catch-up here, or backtrack to explain every valley and mountain since that night.
The truest theme through all this is explained in one simple question.
Who, then, is my God?
Because He is not who I thought He was. Now before you Bible Beaters get all Sunday School on me, have hope. Don't judge. I'm not saying that I don't believe. I'm not saying I don't worship. I'm not saying I don't love. But the person I thought God was, the image I had in my soul of the One I loved before ... that image is gone. So how to believe now? How to worship now? How to laugh and love and move on now? My world was upside down. Maybe it still is. And I've come to the conclusion over the last eight months, two weeks, and three days that it's okay to be here. It's simply, where I am.
And even more important, it's making me stronger. I no longer believe in a god of good fortune, a santa clause in the sky, one who makes all things happy. No.
There is a God. Yes, my friends, there is a God! But He lets horrible things happen and I don't know why. He does not make sense to me, that's for damn sure.
He also creates beauty from ashes, and all good things. He is creating new life inside of me, physically and spiritually, and this blows me away as well.
In fact, it's the dichotomy that perplexes me the most. If I give God credit for all things - if all things are His - under His dominion, His control, His rule - then one God, the same God, a God who never changes and never fails, allowed my brother to die and gave me a baby.
Total defeat. Indescribable joy. Just one God.
Do you remember after hurricane Ike, when no one had power? We were powerless for 15 days at our house. Even though it was September, and the temperatures had been in the triple digits for weeks, we had beautiful, cool weather in those few days after the storm. Everyone stayed outside because the days were so pretty and we had now electricity. I heard people all over saying, "thank the Lord for this beautiful weather, what a gift!" I was talking to a friend about this and she said, "if we're going to thank the Lord for the beautiful weather, we have to also thank him for the hurricane."
It is these things that I ponder. In my celebration and in my grief.
I know that I have to declare His goodness, even in total despair.
Believe that He is righteous, even when I want to change the past.
Know that He is present, even when I feel alone.
Trust Him, even when I don't understand.
If this means that I worship through tears and pray through anger, so be it.
I look at my dad and shake my head, saying, I don't know, I can't explain it, but I believe, and I will walk in the truth that He is good.
More to come. It feels good to be back.