Rising

Ever laid in the bed and made that choice?  Ever opted for the groggy half-sleep?  At that point when there is no longer rest in the stillness, and yet you choose it to cling to it?

The mess, the unknown, the surrender that the day begs?  – I often would rather just roll over.

…and I do. I do it every day, in 100’s of ways.

Sometimes rising is surrendering, giving of yourself.

“There is no greater joy than being broken and given.” – Ann spoke these words this week as she stood in front of the Guatemala city dump and marveled at a school that her successful book had built {that God} had built in this place of utter despair.

She speaks of the discomfort and the pain and vulnerability of the years since her book hit the shelves…and the absolute unshakable wonder and beauty of seeing what God can do with that broken surrender.  I cry to think of this beauty in the broken – this surrender to the now, putting feet on the floor when the bed calls loud.

I’m chasing kids.  I’m surviving.  I’m remembering 3 Saturdays ago the chant, my chant, in the shower “worst mom ever! Worst Mom EVER!  WORST MOM EVER!”

It was toxic.  I knew it.  I didn’t hear myself at first.  When I did, I knew I had to put the brakes on…I had to turn the train around.  And yet, I was powerless.  I was defeated.  I needed grace.  All I could do was whisper a prayer.  Drops fell, and grace cleansed.  Water washing.  My Jesus loved me still and there was forward.  I could get up.  I could stand.  I could rise because HE rose.  I could give because HE gave…and I can never EVER out-give Him.

Every day I wake to the groggy desire to stay under the covers.  Today it overpowers.  I spend the first bit of the day buried under work (or the pretense of it) on the computer.

You see, part of this hard truth that leaves me frozen under the sheets of life is that I prefer being stagnant.  I prefer to hold in all that I have, all that I am – to not really share myself with my family, my neighbors.  I want to be a vessel with no outlets.  How pleasant is that?  A vessel with no outlets is a quick recipe to STENCH.   AND with nothing going out, what can come in?  Can we receive if we don’t give?

Only God knows how much I miss under the sheets of life.

My husband and I acted on impulse recently.  We did something fun and helpful for someone else.  It took us 10 seconds.  I marvel at how much hesitation I had.  How much I hesitated to share the gift.  In contrast I am in awe of the huge gift that WE received in opening our hand, taking the 10 seconds necessary and giving.

How can one hesitate

so much

to do something

so little

that pays

BIG dividends?

…because it’s always easier to stay in bed.

Today, I push away the sheets: in this computer, my phone, my mind, and I choose life.  I choose sharing.  I choose Jesus.  I choose surrender.  I choose my husband.  I choose these kids.  I choose the work he’s blessed me with in this house and in every vulnerable corner.

I remember my friends that mourn the loss of their precious children, some of them that also rode in wheelchairs, and had world-altering smiles.  I remember them and I celebrate what I have right now.  I push aside the worry, the fear and uncertainty of the future.  I do not know the number of our days.  I push aside the chants of failure, and I embrace the NOW that my God has given me.  I count the gifts and I live IN THEM.

I rise.

 

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