Around this time last year (it’s now April) I felt that God was trying to get my attention. But of course I ignored Him as I find that I often do when I’m in “Lindy Mode”. This mode is when I am going full steam ahead, believing that I am consulting with God (notice I used the word “consulting” and not “asking”). This about sums up how I go about doing life when in “Lindy Mode”. I find that I think that I have “asked” God for direction when in actual fact I’m “consulting” with Him. Which really means that I already have a plan in place and I’m ready to forge on full steam ahead. God was trying to get my attention while I was in the midst of attempting to get all my ducks in a row for the coming September. I was getting into the grove of beginning to plan what Bible Study that I felt “He” was directing me to teach for next year, consulting with my fellow teachers and taking a weekend Seminar on how to teach the bible put on by Simeon Trust. (It was a great seminar and I was really enjoying it.) I felt that I was networking and learning all that God wanted me to learn and that I was meeting the people who God wanted me to meet. I had just signed up to join a research group that I added to my load of teaching three bible studies (I signed up because my studies were almost coming to an end and I would then have more time to really get into this research project). Phew, let’s take a bit of a breather here. Family time? Well that just of…sort of….well…I had a duck for that. And let me tell you I didn’t take it too well when the family “duck” got out of line. In fact a fair amount of juggling and reshuffling had to take place when this happened!
So I was good to go…however what was really happening was that God knew that I really wasn’t good to go but I had yet to realize this fact. As the days and weeks flew into May I found that all my ducks were not nicely sitting in the row that I would place them in. I found that God’s still small voice was getting louder and quite frankly a bit annoying because it was interfering with my voice trying to order my ducks to line up again. All this commotion that was going on inside my head finally came to a boiling point where I literally ran out of gas. I fell, deflated, ran out of steam, felt that the world was against me and that there was something definitely wrong. But I still kept trying to organize my ducks until finally I began to listen to God’s voice and He was telling me that I wouldn’t be teaching Bible study in September. In fact that I wouldn’t be part of women’s ministry at all in September.
Well whatever reserve that I had crumbled and I lost my identity. Yep, I said it I lost my identity. Notice where my identity was…it was in what I was “doing” for God…not who I was in Him. I fell apart literally and figuratively. I had a huge pity party and sat up in my office crying because I was not going to be of any use to God. But here’s the reality of where I was (and consequently where I’m still at but we’ll get to this). I physically and mentally had nothing left. I really fell apart. It was actually quite scary to not have any reserve left in the tank. I was not only on empty…the fumes that I would rely on in the past when things got tough were long since gone. I found that the only way that I could cope with things in life that came up was to ignore them. I pulled away into that quite place deep in my mind that was a “safe place” to reside. The only thing is that when you are a wife, mother, mother to an adult child with a developmental disability and grandmother, people keep pulling you out of that quiet safe place. I found that I really didn’t have the luxury to hide away. I needed to be present in whatever form that was. I needed to begin to admit that I didn’t have everything in control. I had to begin to tell people that I needed help. Ouch! and Yeck! (Can we say that I have a bit of a pride issue here?) I had to be OK that God was giving me the opportunity to really have a look at myself and my family. I really needed to get things in place for Christie and I needed to start looking after me. I wrote about Christie’s moving out in, “Last One To Leave”. This current blog tells a bit about what was going on behind the scenes in regards to why I needed to get things moving to help her with this next part in her life.
I was embarrassed and frustrated that I seemed to not be able to hold it all together and would cry at the drop of a hat or get that pain in my chest which was a forewarning that I was getting anxious about a certain situation. I know that my husband didn’t know what to do with me and quite frankly I didn’t know what to do with myself. Remember in one of my blogs I think that I alluded to the fact that I’ve reached a “certain age” in my life and let me tell you this is something that I read about and talked about with my friends but didn’t really think that it was going to jump up and bite me in my rear end so fast and so unexpectedly. Yes looking back I had signs that I should have slowed down or paid attention to but when I’m in “Lindy Mode” I don’t stop to think…I just do…
God is so good. Really I don’t think we actually know how good He actually is. He has been so loving and patient with me. He talks, I don’t listen. He loves, I take it for granted. He talks again, I still don’t listen. I begin to fall apart and He catches me when I fall. He never once says to me, I told you so…instead He says to me…my child I love you so!
I find that God sends people my way just when I need them. He gives me words of encouragement that I don’t even know that I need until sometimes long after the words had been spoken. I get frustrated with my self, my imperfection and He loves be because of my imperfection. I’m mad that I don’t have the strength that I used to have…He waits for me to realize that the strength that I need comes from Him…only Him.
When this happened to me last year I came (slowly) to the realization that I still had a theology, a belief that I needed to prove my worth to God. That I show this by what I can do for Him. It hit me like a ton of bricks when He revealed this to me. I was floored by the fact that I still had this kind of thinking. I mean I know in my head that I can never in my own right prove my worth to Him. In fact that is not what it is about. He freely gave his son to die for me so that I could be worthy in His sight. It is by and through the sacrifice that Jesus did for me that I am worthy. I know this…I know this…but I guess it was still head knowledge for me and my heart had not caught up yet. I don’t have to prove my worth to God. I can never do this. He created me to love Him. That is all I need to do…love Him.
Why am I still struggling with this??? Fast forward to current time and I am coming into it being a year that I have been in this state. I had a rough time of it last week. I think that I have still been in “Lindy Mode” thinking that by now I would be able to pick things back up and start again. I’m so frustrated with myself. I want to get back to ordering my ducks around again…only I find that I still am not in a place that I can do this. I found that I was back to worrying about what worth am I to God in my current state. How can I be effective to Him as I am? The skills and talents that God has given me are not being used. (These are all thoughts that had been raging through my head). I was reminded again by friends that it is not by what I do that makes me worthy. Really! Really! I’m still believing in this false theology??? I’m also slowly…and I mean slowly…beginning to realize that for me I may be in for the long haul in regards to what happens to women of a “certain age”. And if this is the case…then I have to learn to be ok with it. I need to go to God and ask Him to help me through this journey that I am on. I need to continually remind myself that I can never out do God. I need to realize that in fact I could stay upstairs in my office and never go out the door and God could use me. Who am I kidding…HE’S GOD! He can bring people to my doorstep if it is in His plan. He is the one who is in control of my life and the direction that it is taking. The key here is for me to continually bring my frustrations to Him and be willing to let Him transform me to where I need to be so that I can accept where I am. “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me”. The strength that I need, that we all need does not come from ourselves. It comes from Jesus!
Am I through with my pity parties…unfortunately probably not. However today I am choosing to learn what I need to learn and be open to what is coming. Not saying that I’ll like it all…but that’s not what life is about. Life is about learning to trust in God, to strengthen our faith in Him and to love Him with all that we are.
So am I “good to go”? Not in “Lindy Mode”. But I’m always “good to go” when I am asking God to direct my paths and allowing Him to put my ducks in a row for me.
Life’s an adventure…be in it!