Tuesday, August 6, 2013

The same old story stuck in time

I am reading Anne Voskamp’s book “1000 gifts”.  I have been reading it in pieces with months spaced in between the picking it up, because it is hard and chewy and also marvelous.  I sat in the tub tonight and read for maybe an hour or two.  And now I chew on the words; on the bits of thanksgiving tucked in with the good and the hard.  She talks of full, heavy bellied moon, perched low over fields of grain and she runs to it, runs to beauty and I can only think of my standing still. My wanting to run towards beauty, wholeness, thankfulness and I am still here standing still. 

It has been 2 full years since I wrote about being caught in the thorns  :  “I look at my blood stained skin, the thorns dipped in red.  Suddenly they are not just my thorns, they are Christ's.  I have crowned Him in these thorns that I willingly walked into.  He suffered, bled His own blood, skin pierced by the thorns that weren't His own.  His glory forsaken, to be crowned in my sin.  His eyes, tear stained, know my pain.  I can see Him on the road.  Just waiting for me to ask, to ask to be untangled from the vines that grab.  I can see Him, yet I stand mute in my thorns.  Why do I stand, just stand?  Stained and bleeding, torn to shreds and yet I choose to stand." and again I wrote a couple of months later, He stands, waiting, watching, tear stained face.  He stands and I stand.  Guilt ridden for being caught in the thorns and for the juice that stains bright from the forbidden berries.  I stand and I feel unworthy of joining Him on the road.  He waits.   I cry out that I am unworthy. He waits."
In church on Sunday the pastor talked about how God is the God of I Am.  He is now, in the moment, current.  The book brought up the exact same message tonight.  That He is the God of the present.  This moment, this one, and this one.  Every single moment He is in.  Pastor said that this moment is just as likely to be filled with His glory as the next one.  That each moment of each day He is just waiting for us to meet Him there.  Commune with Him, be touched by Him.  He called those of us who wanted to, to come up front and meet God there in that moment.  I almost thought I felt the pastor look right into me on several occasions.  As if he saw me standing on the sidelines, watching, not coming.  My heart wanted to leap onto that stage, sit at the foot of the cross and unload brick after brick against its base, but instead I stood still.  I just stood at my place like I have been for the last two years.  And I sang, oh how I sang the words out……I surrender all, I surrender all, all to thee my precious Savior I surrender all.  And I could taste them on my tongue and I hungered for them to be fulfilling, but my feet wouldn’t move.

It is the same old story stuck in time;  Too afraid to move.  It is the same fear that kept my lips locked tight all those weeks of sitting on a couch in front of counselor.  It is the same fear that kept my feet from carrying me to the front of the sanctuary. 
My counselor told me that there is always so much that I hold on to, that I don’t let out, but she knows it is there because the presence of it burns hot in my eyes and trickles out at the slightest prodding.  She gave me the option to let it out, to let the waters flow out freely, but I never could.  The same plug that held it back there is the same plug that stops me from surrendering even now.  I am afraid that I will wash away with the waters.  That the everything inside will come out all at once and it won’t stop.  It will be loud.  It will be snotty.  It will be more than what I can handle and it will be more than what others can handle.  It will be disruptive and ugly.  The ugly will come washing out and I don’t know what it will destroy in its wake.  And then there are the eyes.  The ones that will be watching, observing, seeing the onslaught of wave after wave of gut wrenching, soul quaking emotion that I so desperately try to hide only to be possibly followed by the worst possible outcome, talking and questions that seek answering, all while being looked at with eyes.
And so I huddle here, behind my keyboard,  because here it is safe. And here I continue to just stand, surrendering only bits and pieces and nowhere near all, and I am not sure how to.
I know that this is not where my story ends.


  1. It is not.
    You are right.
    Your story has not ended yet.

    And I know that fear.
    If you let go, you might find yourself
    too weak to stop
    and who knows
    where things might end.
    I get it.
    I understand.

    Your words are beautiful, dear friend.
    Thank you for writing ... for sharing.

    Be brave.
    In time, you will let go ... and you will run
    to beauty.
    The fact that you recognize your stillness
    is start enough for now.

  2. Oh I know that fear all too well! What will happen if I tell. If I share. My experience has been on the whole a positive one. Not necessarily in the way I hoped or expected, but the telling has been so healing. Whatever it is -- let it out. I will be a compassionate witness to whatever you need to share. We are all here for you.


  3. I've been there with the plug, Karmen - sometimes, I still am. It's not always a complete pull-the-plug experience, and sometimes it is. Mine first came swift and unexpected with my dad's death, and it was scary and fast-moving and unknown, but it was also a huge relief. Since then, it's been more conscious decisions to let go - a process, indeed. You will get there, friend. You will get there. Be gentle and kind with yourself. Your story has so much more to unfold, I just know it.

  4. Thank you ladies for your encouragement and compassion. You are all wonderful. There is more to the story coming soon.

  5. Hi Karmen,

    Thanks for your honesty here about the fear of unleashing that plug. I liked too your line about Voskamp's book being "chewy" as you mull over lines and concepts from it. Yes. :)

    Unloose that plug, my friend, when you feel rested enough into your Abba's loving, safe, pure lap. He loves you.

    Jennifer Dougan


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