Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Exchanging My Ashes for His Beauty: So What? (Part 5)

If you haven't read the first four parts of my testimony, please scroll down and read them in order.

So why do I tell this story? To say three things that I know.

First, God can handle your honesty. You can tell Him you’re angry with Him because His plans don’t match your expectations. You can tell Him that you’re disappointed in Him because the path He’s allowed hurts a lot. You can tell Him that you hate Him because He didn’t rescue you from your abuser, or your disaster, or your choices. TO ALL OF THOSE, He will say, “I know. I love you. I’m here with you.”

Secondly, God isn’t interested in how your faith appears to everyone else. He isn’t concerned so much if your faith looks pretty. He just wants it to be real. He wants to walk with you in those cruddy, painful places life takes you. My faith is very messy. It’s uncomfortable, and painful, and very dingy most days. But you know what? My faith is real, and becoming more and more authentic each time I’m honest with God, each time I dive into my grief bucket and say, “Holy Spirit, please lead me into all truth.”

Finally, God doesn’t want to take your shattered heart and glue the pieces back together. He wants to give you a NEW heart, a heart restored to His original design for it, a resurrected heart, a beautiful heart in the midst of the ashes.

“There are so many ways to hide. There are so many ways not to feel. There are so many ways to deny what is real.” Like the Sara Groves song says, I feel like “I just showed up for my own life. I’m standing here taking it in, and it sure looks bright.” He’s restoring me. I’m coming alive.

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