Friday, February 14, 2014

A Few Thoughts from a Single On Valentine's Day

Valentines Day. Ah yes, that hyped-up Cupid-infused Hallmark-created reminder to many that their left-hand ring finger is as empty as their bed.  That there are no card-giving, roses-toting, candlelit-dinner-taking romantic-words-whispering heartthrobs ringing their doorbells tonight. And if you're in the 50+ singles category you can add the icy-fingered despair that your shelf life is expiring with every passing minute and if God doesn't send "him" (cue sunbeams and the angelic chorus ) soon, there won't be much left to be swept away to happy ever after-ville!  Oh, where IS that bottle of wrinkle cream?!?!?

Yes I'll be the first in line to admit sometimes it stinks to be alone. But God's been working with me a lot on this very subject for awhile now. He has asked the hard question when I've cried and told Him I'm lonely and I didn't think I'd be where I am at this stage of the game, and  I have so much to offer and how come...

"Am I not enough?"


"Am I not enough?"

It stopped me dead in my tracks. 

How do you answer that? "Well yeah-uh, but... Uh... Well..."

That question has haunted me ever since... And then I realized that, if I let Him be enough He could fill the emptiness.  He could calm my longing heart. He could help me get my eyes off what I didn't have and fill me with all I did have... And all I could give away. 

I can take this love and pour it out on others, just love on them and bless them and bring them joy. I can use this time and energy to spend with The Lord, cultivating our relationship and growing and maturing as a godly woman. Instead of whining I can be shining, radiating His love to others... 

So okay, it's still not having a flesh-and-blood someone to romance and hold and cuddle up next to all warm and sleepy in the middle of the night. 

But before me is my holy Bridegroom, the Lover of my soul. The One Who gave His life for me. The One Who loves me unconditionally in spite of my past and ugly heart and sinful selfish self. The One Who always has time to listen to me, Who will never hurt me or lie to me... or abandon me. He will never leave me - He has promised me that. And I believe Him and find comfort and contentment in that. 

Does it mean I'm never sad or lonely, or don't hope for a lifetime of love with that special "someone"? (Cue sunbeams and chorus again). Of course not. 

But... I have found me... in Christ. I am finally, fully myself in/with Him.  I have found joy and contentment in my singleness. I don't know what The Lord has in store for me. We talk about it, and He knows the desires of my heart. I place them all in His capable hands.  I surrender them to His will for my life. He will give me strength and wisdom to walk whatever journey is around the corner. I'm done worrying and fussing and fretting about it. I'm gonna live each day with everything I've got, every drop of love I can give --regardless of whether I'm a Ms. or Mrs.  Because at the end, whether it's been with someone I can call "the Hubs", or whether it's been with family, friends and others, I want to know I loved deeply and fully and completely in His name. 

"I’ve kept my feet on the ground, I’ve cultivated a quiet heart. Like a baby content in its mother’s arms, my soul is a baby content." Psalm 131:2

"I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do all this through him who gives me strength."
Philippians 4:12-13

Monday, February 10, 2014

Terrors in the Night

"Tonight I will sleep securely on a bed of peace because I trust in You, You alone."
Ps 3:5

I wrestle awake, heart pounding out of my chest, mouth drought dry, practically gasping for breath. I fumble as trembling fingers flail for the safety of the lamplight on my nightstand. Struggling to sit up, the horrific video of the nightmare washes over me like an unwelcome sea wave. My body shakes as I try to convince it that what just happened was a dream, not reality... 

I have struggled with nightmares my whole life. Dreams that pierce my sanity in the darkness - so vivid and detailed I can tell you the patterns on the wallpaper, describe the scents, and recount each scene as if it were a recently watched movie. And here I am again, lights ablaze, fully awake to fight against the monsters not under my bed... but in my head. 

Once more, however, I find my refuge in God's Word. My sleeplessness finds solace in His truth, my rest in His reality. Like a loving Papa comforting his young child, He wraps His love around me and whispers tenderly, "Shhh... there now, rest securely, I'm here... I'm here.  You're safe in My arms."

My heartbeat and breathing rest. Terror subsides. Peace replaces panic.  My Father is here at my side and will not leave me. I snuggle down as I almost feel Him tucking me in. I cradle my Bible as a babe clings to a teddy. My heart calms as His lullabye of love blankets my sleep. 

Fear not, my soul, for He is with me. 

"The Lord your God is with you, the Mighty Warrior who saves. He will take great delight in you; in His love He will... rejoice over you with singing."  Zephaniah 3:17

"He will cover you with His feathers, and under His wings you will find refuge; His faithfulness will be your shield and rampart. You wi not fear the terrors of night,,," Psalm 91:4-5