He pulls me close again, but it feels less like a Father this time.
I turn my head upward to face him, but I could not see what I wanted to.
“Do you trust Me?”
and I can’t hide it, I say “no.”
My response is countered with, “yes, you do.”
I raise my head again – somewhere between the question and my answer, I had lowered it – and in His presence, everything within me stilled.
I was no longer responding to the love of a Father. I was responding to the love of a Savior.
Over the past few years, I grew an affinity for things that were not good for me (as many of us do), and this year I made a decision that created a path away from the habits that I had picked up over time.
In an effort to guard my heart, I will not tell of the habits I am hopeful to break (though they are not particularly bad and primarily have to do with learning to love more and better), I did
well theoretically, had great execution, but developed horrible problem solving patterns in the long term.
And I wish I could wordsmith this to make it sound romantic, as if I had it figured out, but I don’t. It may come out clear, it may come out messy, and I may slur it all together and end up right where I started. I am in the process, I am in the journey, I am in the middle of the story. But in this season of my life, I would take all of the moments of attempted excellence and trade it all for one moment of being a mess.
I recently discovered there is a large difference between breaking habits and avoiding habits and while I have excelled at avoiding, I have failed in breaking, because I wanted to fix and I didn’t want to break.
Think of a crack in a parking lot – if you don’t visit the parking lot, you don’t see the crack, but it doesn’t mean it’s gone. If you visit it often, you could cover it up with more concrete but there will still be a bump there, maybe a mismatch in color. Lastly, you can break up the parking lot more and tear it all out and begin fresh again, as if the parking lot had never been there in the first place.
It seems counterintuitive though, right? Why completely break up something that’s only partially broken?
But I found that is the difference between avoiding and breaking. In order to break the habit, I had to break in full. I didn’t want to. I didn’t have to. But I chose to, so I would heal, and heal in full.
There is one word for love in the English, but there has been six types of love translated from ancient Greek. I do believe that when we assign one word to embody many things, we make up definitions that disguise the word to become something it is not, something it has never been. And that is where excellence and perfection snuck into my perception of perfect love (1 Peter).
I reached out to God as a Father in this season, but ran into feeling antsy and defeated. I did not need a comforting love, but I did not know that. He knew that.
I needed the love of a Savior. I needed a lover for my soul to heal. I needed a lover to break and fix me all over again.
When I make a mistake, I feel my stomach drop and I start spiraling. I don’t know where I picked up that habit, but I have a feeling it’s been around for a lot longer than I could ever be aware. And that feeling takes a hit to my self-love, which takes a hit to the way I feel love for others, too.
Today I woke up at 7:58 for an 8am conference call (thank goodness for working from home), had a SharePoint mishap and did not save the PowerPoint document I worked on for three hours, spilled my lunch across the kitchen counter, didn’t make my bed and then
miraculously found my missing keys and sunglasses in a side pocket of my bag that I did not know existed
fixed the PowerPoint slides that did not save
found the name of a band I had been searching for
and made my bed
I saw that I handled my day differently for the first time. I handled myself differently for the first time.
I almost failed and completely failed, but Jesus revealed to me how to resurrect it all.
His love – the resurrection type of love – claimed the excellence, and left me with peace.
It left me a with lifestyle of resurrection.