Wednesday, August 7, 2013
To Beat a Dead Horse
Victory. Today I had a taste of it. The relief of immense pain, a glimpse of the hope to come, laughter and smiles. I wake up now and my immediate thought is no longer that Trent is in heaven. My immediate thought lately has been "why is that bird singing at 5:45 a.m. again?" At night I make the choice between sweltering hot or a morning solo, shutting out the cool breeze or leaving the window open. Most nights I've chosen the heat. After a couple of swipes at the snooze button I realize I am awake and thinking about the events of the day: kids to get on that big yellow school bus, chores that need to be done, which rows need to be weeded in the garden....
I realized tonight that I wrote those words over a month ago. Then I realized that it's been nearly as long since I've written anything authentic. Stuffing has been the menu choice of the emotions as of late. I am feeling worn-out in this grief journey by other people's opinions. Or, rather, my opinions of what I think other people's opinions are. I can't stomach the game of small talk anymore. To bring up your dead son, or not bring it up, is exhausting. And I'm just plain tired of processing this. Tired of it all, actually. Of always hurting. Of always trying to theologically sort everything. Always defending. So I've just kind of shut down.
And attempted to go through the motions of living.
I literally look up every once in a while and force myself to remember Trent's presence in our home. I hate it that I can hardly conjure it up. Where he sat- the seat is not so empty anymore. Seeing him lying on the living room floor in his sleeping bag for movie night. The open wall where the bunk bed used to be. The hand on my back. Him asking for Mom. Kickboxing. Smiling. Kissing and popping noises. That giggle that always made you laugh with him.
That's why I stuff. If I don't, the avalanche of tears begin. Instead, I steadfastly resolve to wait for eternity. When I look around, I go insane. I am tired of reading theological fluff of people who have never suffered. The actresses rendition of Corrie TenBoom tonight in the Hiding Place movie spoke my heart. I hate this, too. Please, Jesus, please carry this when I can't.
Those pictures. I forced my children to smile. Literally forced them. It cost them an extra weeks worth of chores plus cleaning out the barn. Their rebellion for not wanting to take pictures without their brother either. One obedient child, who's heart showed even as she plastered on the smile, broke down afterward. Sometimes this feels like too much. Too much to ask of a mother.
The lies are so subtle: this isn't worth it, there is only the bottomless pit of the pain that the hand of God won't reach so far or stretch so wide or hold so much. Give in. Let go. Quit yapping about all this Jesus stuff.
If I would only run to Him.
And quit fearing man.
Clenching to the Word. Waiting patiently. Loving the promises instead of doubting them.
Satan likes to mock Christ's saints. I see him dancing around Jesus in the gospels, tempting, taunting, so alluring.
Back to the word. Back to the truth. Standing solid.
One day every knee shall bow, every tongue confess that Jesus is Lord. One day it will be made right. One day eternity will begin.
I'm not remembering that victory of a month ago tonight. God has been teaching me weakness instead. Showing me a taste of just how weak I am. Making it all be by only His strength. Pitifully, I still fight. Wanting to be the strong one, strong enough to endure anything. Stubborn and bullheaded, instead of submissive and patient. My head is about bloodied beyond recognition for how many times I've beat it against His sovereignty.
He holds me in the end. When I quit thrashing. He is there. Bottling every tear. Calming His child. Pointing me again to what matters: Jesus. Only Jesus.