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Thursday, September 30, 2010

The Land Between...

It's a rough place to be. You know the place. Well, at least I do - (most people do, but for whatever reason we feel like we have to put on this facade that says we have it all together, when realistically we're all just big blobs of mess walking around). Regardless, it's a rough place to be. I imagine it as a desert, or valley, in between two bountiful and lush patches of land. Cliche or not, I imagine my life on a chart that looks like this:

It's no secret that life is full of the ups and downs. Much like the heartbeat on the above chart. You feel like you can conquer the world during those peaks, but in an instant, on the decline, life can leave you feeling so defeated. I've found myself in the desert a lot lately. Life has just been HARD. I feel like I haven't even been able to come up to breathe for a second. My heart has been so heavy for many different things, and aside from just a busy schedule, everything just feels so urgent and rushed. I know that God brings us to these deserts in our lives for a reason. We grow and come into who we are in Christ during these times, and I am so thankful. I know He is up to something. He's been stirring my heart a lot, and He's opening my eyes to so much.

I was talking with a man yesterday about this. God orchestrated our conversation in such a beautiful way. My heart was heavy as I was preparing for a night of worship, and as I sat there a man came up to me and started some small talk - you know, about the weather, the building we were in, yada yada...But suddenly it all shifted when this man spotted a book sitting nearby. I had never heard of it before, but he had recently read it and began telling me about it. He spoke of this desert he has been in for a while now, and although he didn't go into any detail about it other than it just being a "desert", I could feel the lump in my throat swelling. He began to sob, and I could just sense the weight of the situation all around us. I empathized with this man, because I too have been in a tough desert myself. But the beauty of it all was that as we sat there and cried, we both knew that it was okay.

Although it's difficult to be where we're at in life sometimes, God has brought us to that land between, and that means it IS going to be okay. After all, we're only traveling through these deserts. We don't stay forever. And all the while, God is right there with us. He never abandons us when our hearts feel dry. He's the One carrying us through. He never said it was going to be easy. He promised hardships and trials. But when we start to feel alone, or like He is too far away, He shows up to give us a fresh reminder of His love and mercy. Those bountiful, lush patches of land are soon coming. And even though I may feel like I'm holding on by a tiny thread, when I get there, this is all going to be worth it. I am so thankful for a God who loves me even if I cry and groan the entire way through the desert. I am thankful for a Heavenly Father who invites me in even if the desert has me looking like a big blob of mess. And I am especially thankful for a Savior who doesn't stand tall with me JUST on the mountain tops, but walks me through the valleys too.

Isaiah 40:3-5
"A voice of one calling:
"In the desert prepare the way for the LORD;
make straight in the wilderness a highway for our God.
Every valley shall be raised up,
every mountain and hill made low;
the rough ground shall become level,
and the rugged places a plain.
And the glory of the LORD will be revealed,
and all mankind together will see it.
For the mouth of the LORD has spoken."

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