It’s been a short rehabilitation, but it’s been an eventful one. I’m in a good place right now and I have faith that I’ll soon be lead to an even better one, but the view from here is quite new.
For a long time, a lot longer than I’d ever expected, the valley was my home. Being a follower of of Christ, I figured we’d visit every once in awhile, but the valley became much more than a layover. I won’t play victim because I extended my stay there with unfaithfulness and impatience, but I didn’t wander there. I was purposefully led.
I was led into the valley by the same One who called me out. Now I make my hike up the next mountain, but only by grace and mercy. I wish I could say that in the valley I held strong to God’s promises and His character, but I didn’t. Oh, I fought long and hard, but in the end I gave up long before the rescue.
On the mountaintop, I was the undefeated heavyweight whom (did I use that right?) the enemy feared. Willing to do anything God asked me to with little hesitation. The silent killer made a stellar appearance: pride crept in, as it always does when unattended.
God, in his graciousness, was having none of it. He took me lower than I’ve ever been for longer than I ever expected. I hurt to the point of no longer being able to feel anything. I even thought of suicide. “How is this possible? How could I experience so much of his glory and then, seemingly all of a sudden, not feel anything at all?”
He talked me off a ledge, I’m still here obviously (this is not being typed from beyond the grave, but how cool would that be?), but again he stepped back. Then I could feel again, hurt, abandoned, and deceived. So I turned to idols, worldly knowledge and ideas. They held me over for awhile and it felt good temporarily but all who know Christ know that there is no turning back. Once you’re in, you’re in… and that’s the best thing you could ever hope for.
Eventually I felt him close, calling me to him again once I got too far. Of course being the stubborn child I am, I ignored him. How could he leave me like that and then expect me to just come back? Um, no. (I know it’s God we’re talking about here, but I’m just being honest. I have been and can be very disrespectful) But he was gentle, patient, and persistent. I would “randomly” get these reminders of how fulfilling life was following him. How much purpose I had when I wanted what he wanted. Everything he asked me to give up, today I could never consider a loss because I gained so much more.
To someone who doesn’t know Christ, this sounds crazy. It still sounds crazy to me too, yet life with him is the only thing that’s ever made sense. He doesn’t control me. If I wanted, I could absolutely still be out there fumbling thru life, but I “can’t”. I really didn’t and don’t want to be far from God at all.
This post is not the victory lap, just the first leg of recovery. So much more is to come, valleys and mountaintops. The goal right now is to take it one yes at a time. Not even a day at a time because that seems so overwhelming. With every tiny step I make, God makes a big deal out of it, out of me. I’m not naive enough to think I’m doing something spectacular, but the fact that God makes a big deal out of me.