Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Expose (08/22/13)
TITLE: Tough Love
By Pauline Carruthers
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“ I trust You Father, my Abba Father. I just don’t want to talk right now. I want to shout. I want to shout so loudly that all Heaven can hear me. It hurts Lord. It h u r t s. So please turn off Your spotlight shining into my heart and leave me in the dark for a while.”
He knows I never shout, except in my head. He waits. As always, when He wants my attention He is silent and the silence reverberates in spirals around my mind, coming to rest in my troubled spirit. I just want to sit quietly at my desk, looking out of the window. The rain soaks the ornamental plum tree in the garden, its gloriously bronzed leaves drooping under the weight. I slump in my chair, drenched in sorrow. I feel His smile and know He waits for mine. But still I droop resentfully, instead of lifting up a dew soaked head to grasp His grace and drink in His life giving presence. A watery smile and the light of His presence floods my heart. He knows me so well. There is nothing hidden from Him.
The future had seemed so completely assured. My house was sold and the apartment I planned to buy had come back on the market. Circumstances aligning, just as I believed God had said. And then, one bright blue, sun soaked morning, when the birds and I were singing His praises, I had opened up my laptop for just one more excited look at the apartment. An explosive, graffiti-like ’SOLD’ sign splayed across the screen. Shock, like a silent movie playing before my eyes, dissolved my dreams into dust. My mouth opened to cry out, but an invisible gag held in the sound, allowing only freely flowing, soundless tears. That same day my house sale fell through.
“Lord, why have you allowed this? One more disappointment to accompany the many gone before. I’m so tired of spinning on the Potter’s wheel, as disappointments drip incessantly into my life.”
A familiar CD plays in the background, the words and music reaching into my soul.
‘Why are you striving these days? Why are you crying. Let Me lift up your face.’
I am not consciously striving, simply waiting patiently for His plans for me to come to fruition, forgetting that in the natural world time seems to be of the essence. Yet in the spiritual it is merely a word. The doorbell rings and the automatic smile spreads across my face. Hiding the disappointments of this day and the overwhelming loneliness of life without David. A lifetime of covering the pain of hurts with a smile.
Loneliness. I have glimpsed it, though unrecognised, in the eyes of others. Now I see it in my own eyes, masked beneath the grief of loss. But He sees it and uses it to peel away another layer, seeking to unearth the beauty He has planted within. A tiny glimmer of understanding begins to unfurl, like a new leaf wrapping itself around its supporting stem. Putting on a brave face for the world is simply masking the pain deep inside, hiding the sorrow from myself. Yet I cannot hide it from Him! I grieve for my special husband and I am disappointed that the plans we made are falling, like melting snow around my feet.
“Take off the brave face,” He whispers. “I see what lies beneath. Let your loneliness shine out into other lonely lives. Be My beacon on a hill, taking Me into the loneliness of the world around you.”
My Heavenly Father doesn’t desire that the next stage in my life should simply be a leaving of one home for another, in a different place. But a leaving behind of a lifetime habit of hiding the pain. And disappointment is simply another catalyst, setting me free to be the person He wants me to be.
Naivete died today! Today I picked a rose from the garden, crushing delicate petals in the palm of my hand, releasing a richer, sweeter perfume through the crushing. Creation’s own expression of a more vibrant beauty discovered within. He speaks to me of the love that has to allow hurt in order to open the wounds. Searching deeply, pouring in the healing balm of His perfect love. Bringing to light the hidden treasure within.
The spotlight dims. I’m in the dark again. Yet His light still drips dew on my unveiled, arid soul.
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