Friday, February 22, 2013

the dimmer switch, Abbey, and the Native Americans

If you know me well, you've probably heard me quote this as an answer when answers just won't come, "We see as in a mirror, dimly"

We do... its true.  One day, though, we won't have to squint by candlelight anymore, but with clarity, all things will be revealed. (...chuckle...) It makes me think of the other  night in the kitchen, the lights were set at a "mood" level as my (extremely practical) Mother proclaimed, "wow this is an annoying level of light isn't it!?" It was like juuuust bright enough to get around without tripping, but dim enough to cause early- onset forehead wrinkles because of the squint-fest.  I'm all about dim lighting... but she's right... it can totally be annoying, especially at times when clarity is required.  Sure its nice to sometimes sit down to a meal out at a restaurant with an ambiance of candlelight... but who wants to like... do their taxes in this kind of lighting... or like try to find their car keys? Its frustrating!

And so it is with life... its like things are constantly set on the dang dimmer switch... and all while I'm trying to see clearly to figure out my (ahem) destiny here, LORD.  No matter how hard I try to "CLAP ON(clap clap) CLAP OFF (clap clap)"... things just ain't gettin' any brighter.  Its cool how that book, The Purpose Driven Life, awakened a lot of people to the idea that maybe there is a reason we are all here... that we are not just wandering aimlessly through a dimly lit corn maze of an existence!  At the same time though, I sometimes feel like we have now been sent on a quest where purpose must be found in every tiny matter.  Especially for purpose-seekers like myself.  I want to live a life on purpose, but sometimes it can seem like we are trying to know the end from the beginning... because we are afraid to just... trust. Sometimes I try to make myself believe that when I leave the house late because I can't find my keys or something.... it must be because God is protecting me by helping me avoid an accident or something... usually though, I just thoughtlessly laid my keys somewhere and now I can't find them.  We don't know every thing's purpose yet.  This is the point of the dim lighting though, right?  That we might rely on Someone... who has a better view... to help lead us along.

My girlfriends and I just had to say goodbye to our dear friend, Abbey, this morning because she is moving to Texas.  There are so few twenty-somethings in our area that we are not shy about snatching one up when they find themselves somehow displaced in our town ;-) Abbey is one of those girls who just fit into our group of friends so naturally.  We only got to really know her for about 6 months, but she was like the cheese added to our broccoli chicken casserole or something- she rounded out the flavor and we are going to miss her so much.  She was newly married and lived in the northeast for 4 months without really having a community of friends... and one could ask a lot of "why's" here.  Why would the Lord bring her here and then take her away so quickly?  Why (when me and my friends were waiting like Piranhas as we prayed for community) didn't we meet her sooner?... so we could've had 10 months instead of only 6?.... None of it makes sense.  All we can do is be thankful for the gift of time we were blessed to have with her, love her, and let her go into this new season that God is leading her into.  There is not really anything in this life that we can hold onto, we can only hold out our hands to receive a gift that the Lord wants to give, and then leave our hands open to offer it right back to Him to let Him freely do with it what He desires.  It's not a game that He's playing with us.  He just sees the completed picture and we are doing this 1,000 piece puzzle by the light of the dimmer switch...

I heard this quote one time in reference to what we can do with all of the unknowns - "Lord, I submit this to the mystery of Your will."  I love that- its a good one to keep in the back pocket to snack on in times of confusion.

We see as in a mirror, dimly... but someday we will see clearly.  I so often just wish the Lord would turn the lights up already.  Instead though... there is trust that is being built.  When I don't have the capability of having the overhead lighting that He has, I must learn to take Him at His word.  It's like I'm being herded along by a good Shepherd or something... His rod and His staff... they comfort me.
This isn't a new struggle, eh?  I mean... remember: hey... eat this apple (or more accurately, some other kind of exotic garden of Eden fruit variety... surely organic ;-) Eat this... and it will all make sense... you'll know it all... and you'll understand it all.  Funny how the oldest lie remains to be the toughest to fight off, huh?  This lie should've been on that show Myth Busters a long time ago... but we are all still getting Punked by it...

The Good news?  The Lord is like the Native Americans.  uh... okay? Yea. You know how you learned in school as a kid, that the Native Americans- when they had hunted and caught an animal- they used every part of it... nothing went to waste.  As does our Maker... use everything.  No test or trial or unknown will go to waste, but instead can and will be used for His glory.

Longing for the day when we see clearly.  When we know as we are fully known and love as we are fully loved.

Much love,