After.

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It has been one week. Can I tell you how many times I have been muttering “no” to myself? How many times I have screamed in the car, believing that if I yell “no” loud enough, that everything will be back to normal? How many times I have remembered, cried, said I was fine, and did life, after?

TOO MANY TIMES. TOO MANY TIMES.

I want to scream at the cosmos, smash the stars until their glitter is piled around me in a  shattered heap of porcelain, rip apart the clouds and tear the sky into shreds.

THIS IS NOT MY LIFE.

But it is.

Frankly, I find this all a cruel joke. I told myself that this year, I would choose joy. I told God that I would trust him. And I also remember that over Christmas break, I prayed for brokenness. I believe that brokenness is how we draw closer to God, and he to us.

So in a way, I feel like this is all my fault. Maybe I would still had a grandfather if I had prayed for something else.

How could I have known?

But as I spit these bitter words onto my virtual page, I am reminded that choosing joy is something that we do regardless of our circumstances. Frankly, I don’t see how I can do that right now, or ever. I feel as if I received the short end of the stick. I am livid. How can this be? How can I choose joy, how can I trust God now? I feel as if I am being punished for wanting to draw closer to the creator of the universe. This is the test in which I must walk through fire. You know, everyone says following God isn’t easy, but I never imagined it would be this difficult.

I sent him an email to set up our weekly skype, because in my mind, I’m going to receive a reply in a couple hours. The next morning I woke up and found a reply; my heart skipped a beat, only to sink in crushing disappointment to realize it was an automatically  generated email. The words slapped me with their formal, brief, almost cold reply. He didn’t write it. It was standard. Was I naive to expect more, or expect the miraculous?

Yes.

And no.

I  believe that God is powerful and that he is not arbitrary in his ways. I want to walk away from this and still be able to say that God is good, all the time. Despite wanting to scream at the creator of the universe, I find myself resentfully comforted by these words:

“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the LORD. “As the heavens are higher than the heart, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.” Isaiah 55:8-9

I remain confident of this: I will see the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living. Wait for the LORd; be strong and take heart and wait for the LORD. Psalm 27:13-14

The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me, because the LORD has anointed me to proclaim the good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives, and release from darkness the prisoners, to proclaim the year of the LORD’s favor and the day of vengeance of our God, to comfort all who mourn, and provide for those who grieve in Zion—to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of joy instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair. Isaiah 61:1-3

Death really sucks. Sorry. It just wasn’t supposed to be this way. I’m still angry, but more than anything, I’m hurt. I’m disappointed. I’m devastated. Is it too much to ask for someone to come back to life? I don’t think so, and this isn’t over, yet. But honestly, After should be illegal. I have descended into listlessness, unable to concentrate on anything that requires even a small amount of substantial brain power. Funny, because I am also doing everything in my power to keep my brain from thinking too hard about the things I do not want to think about. Nothing works. My mind is as occupied as ever. But, if I think about it hard enough, everything returns to normal.

Normal is such a precious state in which we fragilely remain. It is the glass of a snow globe, and mine is shattered.

 

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