All Things

2013 was a hard year for me. Just thinking about all the events that transpired over the course of last year makes my heart ache and my eyes well up. I’m not trying to be overly dramatic–I’m just a wears her heart on her sleeve kinda gal. And I know, do I ever know, that there are those who have suffered and ached and limped up hills far steeper than I; but I’m not in the business of comparing pain. You can’t. There are no olympics of suffering, of aching hearts. Besides, it’s not really a game that you want to win.

I just know what it is to fall asleep on a tear stained pillow. I know how hard and painful it can be to trust God with your heart’s deepest desires. I know what it is to experience loss; to cry out to the Lord. Life can be downright devastating.

And yet…

It’s in the valley, it’s in my darkest moments when I’ve experienced measures of joy that I couldn’t have known outside of despair. It’s in that day to day, moment by moment battle of letting go of your plan, of what you know in your heart will make you happy; it’s relaxing your white knuckled grip and laying down your heart at His feet and crying out “Have thine own way, Lord”; it’s in those moments, thru profound pain that He has enabled me to drink deeply of His love and experience overflowing joy. Not the joy that makes you happy but the joy that gives you comfort; the joy that acts as a balm to your soul; the joy that only our Heavenly Father can bestow to His children. It’s in those moments of joy that I’ve been keenly aware that He is ever faithful; it’s in those moments that I’ve rejoiced that this is not my home, that I was created for so much more than life on this broken, sin riddled earth.

2013 was a hard year for me; but I wouldn’t trade it for anything in the world. Because in 2013 God taught me the how and the why of being thankful for the aching heart that beats within my chest because He drew me nearer to His heart; He’s conforming my will to His, He is molding me into His likeness. And it hurts, but is it ever beautiful.

“…And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to His purpose. For those whom He foreknew He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, in order that He might be the firstborn among many brothers. And those whom He predestined He also called, and those He called He also justified, and those He justified He also glorified.” –Romans 8:28-30

He works ALL things for our good. Even and especially those suffering hearts.