Taking a long hard stare at my past can make me feel like I’ve turned into a nut-job over night. Honestly. The bells and alarms start sounding. Yup, this time she just may have actually lost it people.
This past week, my emotions have been changing faster than a four year old girl changes her wardrobe throughout the day. The negative voices are piping up in their obnoxiously loud tones because they somehow think they’ve been invited again. And suddenly I’m finding myself politely correcting God, “Ummm… I THINK you may have gotten this whole thing mixed up. Perhaps… I’m just saying… I’m kind of a train wreck over here. I think You meant to use someone a little more together. Just maybe?” My outlook is forecasted with Doom’s Day – all hope is lost, why try, it’s overwhelming. All the while not noticing reality is proving I should really be grabbing my sun glasses – hope is shining brightly, an invitation to just BE is waiting, full breath is just an inhale away.
Truthfully, one night this week I almost went to bed with negative voices and Doom’s Day stomping around in my head (Btw, going to sleep fully immersed in this is a terrible idea since you usually wake up with an emotional hangover effect). All the self analysis was weighing heavy on me. But a small voice whispered, “just stop”. And so I silenced it all for a brief moment.
And the next thing that entered my mind were the words of David G. Benner
Our challenge is to unmask the Divine in the natural and name the presence of God in our lives.
Immediately I had to catch my breath.
Oh my gosh.
It’s not about me… It’s not about analyzing everything. To. Death.
It’s about Him.
This seems a basic enough Christian perspective, right? But somehow in all the sifting through the pain from the past and in the trying to accept heartbreaking insights in my story… this truth was momentarily flat out lost on me.
Merely focusing on ME and the details of ME leads me into trying to turn crazy-making into sense-making. And the reality is, sometimes we are not going to be able to make sense of the crazy, unreal, brutally painful things in our lives. And pressing to fit these big mis-shaped painful things into a box or to understand that ONE tiny detail we think will make all the difference often wind up doing a little crazy-making business on us.
This BIG little reminder took my mind from Doom’s Day to the Divine and gave me breath with it’s simple sweep of truth. It took the focus of my eyes and heart from ME to HIM. It took me from the details of ME to the overall presence of HIM. And I started asking better questions,
Where do I see God in this part of my story?
How have I experienced the Divine amidst the pain?
When I stop pressing for sense-making to show up and make it all better, all the crazy-making details can miraculously be transformed by His Divine-making. He can show me where He was present amidst the mess even though I couldn’t see Him back then. He can show me that His heart was breaking as He watched mine break. He can fill me with His peace which is able to consume my pain and sorrow.
So this is where I’m at today.
I’m letting go of the details from the past. I’m letting go of self-analyzing and anything which perpetuates crazy-making. Instead, I’m asking God for an increased awareness of His presence in my story.
It’s not about me… It’s about Him.