Saturday, March 7, 2009

Beautiful Desolation

John 20:29 "...blessed are they who did not see, and yet believed."

I became a Christian in 1983 at the age of fifteen. I am a strong personality with very definite opinions that I have to bite my tongue at times not to share. I saw God change my life in such an amazing way that it NEVER crossed my mind to doubt Him. Ever. Until recently.

I have struggled with my beliefs in the past six months in a way I have never before known. And it has rocked me to my very foundation. I have made poor choices in the past and then had the unpleasant experience of living with the consequences of those choices, but I can deal with that. It is an expected life equation. In recent months, however, I have realized that God has brought me, by His own Hand, down a road that is unexpectedly desolate and I have been left questioning the very bedrock of my previously unyielding faith. My forty years of life have never been a cakewalk...there has been much disappointment and heartache and I have learned to befriend failure rather than resist it. There is much to be learned at that great destination called "the end of yourself". But this...well, this is different.

The odd thing about all of this is that He has guided me to, and then through, great pools of difficulty in the past, but this time is different because I am also at a place in my own soul of great burnout. Having soldiered through four remarkably painful tornadoes in recent years, I failed to take note of the effect of those cyclones on my heart and soul and then take appropriate measures to see myself through the necessary healing and restoration. And so now I am in a helicopter of His design, being given a birds eye view of the damages. No one enjoys pictures of the landscape after the storm rips through because it leaves you feeling, well, helpless. Exactly.

The other ugly truth is that I have been more loyal to my notions of Him than I have been to who He really is. I have been serving the American God who takes care of my every practical need and fills me with such great joy and who keeps me from all the pain and anguish that others around the globe live in daily. But that is rather like looking at a the Grand Canyon through a pinhole and thinking you have beheld it's beauty and immensity.

It is times like these that I wish like anything that I were an opaque work of art on His pottery wheel rather than the transparent window that I am by His design. I want to run away and hide so others cannot see what I am seeing inside of myself because to my eyes it is offensive and humiliating. In truth it is a thing of beauty that has not yet taken shape and He loves for others to look on as He works His miracles. So I thought I would let you have a look at what He is creating out of my own desolation.

And thank you for taking the time to stop by.


Mateo March 7, 2009 at 11:36 AM  

Excellent post. Thanks, I really needed that today. God bless.

Beth Brawley Taylor March 7, 2009 at 4:22 PM  

Thanks, Matt. I do hope my husband and I can meet you and your wife at a CFN gathering sometime. :D

Joylene Green March 7, 2009 at 5:14 PM  

thanks for this. Great post.

A hug for the journey you're on.

The Real Gal March 7, 2009 at 7:22 PM  

Wow Beth, thank you for being real and sharing some of your struggles. Keep up your journey girl Blessings!

Mateo March 7, 2009 at 10:15 PM  

We are planning on being at the CFN conference in Carrollton, GA in June. Perhaps we will see you there.

Melissa King March 8, 2009 at 11:06 PM  

i can say an amen to that. thank you for sharing your heart so openly

Ari March 9, 2009 at 8:50 PM  

Thanks for being brave enough to express what a lot of us feel...

Love you! :-)

Cee March 10, 2009 at 10:02 PM  

You write so beautifully Beth, so vividly, so real, so authentically.

This is wonderful to read and causes me to reflect on where God is taking me and how I am desiring to walk with Him.

Thanks for your honesty.