Sunday, January 30, 2011

The ache of separation

I'm overwhelmed.

It's easy to do. Life gets a little bumpy or busy, and suddenly I find myself shutting down, trying to find a hole to run to, and something that can distract me from reality until it's safe to come out again.

I'm a wuss.

Lately, I find myself in yo-yo land. One minute I'm marveling at all the blessings God has seen fit to bestow on me. The next I'm so frustrated with people and the human condition, and completely disgusted with the nastiness that wells up in my heart when I encounter it. Probably because anytime I encounter undesirable things in others, it serves as an accusing mirror, laughing and taunting me for my own ugliness. Then I spend time with children, and find all manner of peace and joy has wormed it's way into my heart, and I'm thankful for the chance to be with them. Then I try to have "adult" relationships and I'm right back into "I'm sorry, I'm an introvert and I can't deal with you right now" mode.

These ups and downs make me tired.

Really tired.

And in my tiredness, I find myself once again in a place where the aching in my heart envelops me and becomes my entire reality. The ache that screams my separation from God. The ache that accuses me, and increases the gravitational pull on the chains that are torturing my poor, blistered, starved heart.

From my prison, I watch those around me. People who are diligent, and seek God with all their strength. And I feel my strength fail. How far I am from that. I feel... fake.

And I cry. I cry for God to chase after me. I cry for Him to meet me in my chains. I cry for Him to gently heal the pressure sores that fester all over my soul. I cry to hear His voice. I long to hear Him tell me I am loved, and valued, and accepted. I ache to be wooed, and invested in. And I cry, because I know this is also the ache in His heart.

So why are we still separated?

My sin cannot be great enough to keep us apart. Is it the fault of my heart which cannot accept love? I am helpless to close the distance even a little.

So I cry.

And pray.

And then, mercifully, the ache goes back into hiding, and I'm able to move around within the confines of my hollow life once more. I go to work, eat, sleep. I eventually fight the urge to shut down and shut everyone out. I reach out to try to maintain the relationships as best I can, praying that they become real, life-giving relationships, and not just another obligation. I remind myself when my ugly negative reactions come up, that I don't have to live that way. I go up, and I go down. And little by little, I learn new Truths about who I am, and Who my God is. I remind myself that relationships are about Honor, and not obligation. It's not all about me.

And I forget.

And the cycle repeats.

And I remember...

And I cry out for My God to close the gap between us, take me in His arms, and teach me the ways of His love...

And I trust, that these tears born of pain will be renewed into tears of joy and understanding.

And I wait. Feeling just a little stronger than before.

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