Soooo…the pretty lights and music aren’t doin’ it for you, huh?
Yeahhhh. Me neither.
Lots of us out here, from what I hear. Lonely, sad, hurting, lost… in spite of the hope and promise of the season. Something about the organized glee all around makes us feel a leeetle dark n crusty by comparison. Amplifies our losses and sufferings, then distills them down into tears.
I got stuck in the dark this year too. My faith and hope not rising to the occasion. Too wounded to choose.
So let’s gather ‘round each other here, my “real” brothers and sisters. We can pray for each other, share our needs, send our love, ask our questions. Isn’t that what we really wanted all along? Someone WITH us, who HEARS us, who KNOWS?
After a week of tears, here is our Lord’s hand to me just now. You won’t believe what He used to show me what I need! A tiny green LIZARD.
A baby lizard inside my front window pane had won my heart this week, eating the odious houseflies from a recent plague. We got used to each other, almost friends. He never ran when I swatted flies. I never shooed him outside. We came to trust each other. I called him Izzy. He stared and blinked.
Then, just now, as I walked past the window, there the poor little thing was…TRAPPED. Helplessly glued to a sticky fly trap. STUCK from his tiny nose to the end of his long tail and every microscopic toe. His efforts to leap and catch his meal had not ended well. Only his tiny eyes could move.
I knew just how he felt.
Don’t tell anyone, but I cried. The sight stabbed the other pains in my heart–for the grandson STUCK in addiction. Then twisted it deeper for loved ones STUCK in poor choices, and myself STUCK in waning hope.
I knew I had to try to save him. Had to pry his delicate thin skin off that tenacious death trap. Was afraid it would hurt him or kill him. Knew I had to try.
I trimmed the sticky trap away around his imprisoned body, then gently touched his outline with an oily swab, a teensie careful move at a time.
The fear and hopelessness was as plain on his face as it has been on mine lately. “Shhhh,” I whispered to him, slowing my motions so as not to worry him. And applied the oil gently, slowly, until he was FREE. Then watched helplessly as he ran away, his fear hurling him into a bowl of water. So I saved him from that TOO. And dried him on a paper towel.
“It’s OK…shhh….slow down there…all is well, little Izzy, all is well.”
When I returned him back to his spot in the big window I whispered to him “Now I know you didn’t know I was saving you all along…” and watched his tiny eyes flicker. “I know it was hard and you can’t understand me.” Still teary, I gently set him down.
Then heard my own words come from another place. God. The REAL God. Whispering the same to me.
We DON’T understand. It CAN be hard. WHY?!
The cure is not always easy. We don’t understand the “why”.
But we know Him when we see Him there in the faint light at the end of the tunnel. Again.
That one holy star still shines.
So maybe this year the “Merry” that comes before “Christmas” doesn’t ring as true as other years. Maybe we don’t even recognize our own selves, wonder if we ever even HAD faith. But we “know” we are loved, even if our “feel” is broken. “Know” He has us, even though our faith flags and fails.
I love you, brothers and sisters who share my wordless pain for the hard “cure” our Lord is using on us now. Let’s pray for each other. Wait together in the darkness. Cry for the sorrow, smile for the light.
Even those three Wise Men had to trudge a long time through the desert to find Him.
Cast your cares on the LORD and he will sustain you; he will never let the righteous fall. Psalm 55:22
So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand. Isaiah 41:10
In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” John 16:33
I consider that the sufferings of this present time are as nothing compared with the glory to be revealed for us. Romans 8:18