My first thought of a title was the “Heart Stretched Thin Edition”. Who doesn’t need a bigger picture on Monday? I most certainly do. While my first thought was valid, I went with the one I was the most bossy about.
Today has been a day. I started writing Favorite Things Monday posts in attempt to combat the Mondays. Writing this out is therapeutic for me. It’s like my journal that I invite you to read. It’s been a place to talk about the good and the bad and helps me (and hopefully others) keep their eyes on the main thing. The main thing always tends to get lost so we get back to that, the bigger pictures and the hope found in seemingly small things. So today, it has been a day and a perfect one to write something that puts me back in my place. And one that reminds me of God’s grace, mercy and his unfailing love and faithfulness. Today screams it and I need reminded of it all at the same time.
Life is so tricky like that.
So often I have wondered how joy and sorrow can co-exist. How does frustration, disappointment and awe all take up resident in one heart at the same time? Not only does it, I have had plenty of opportunity to see how God uses it. The problem is, I see how He works that out when I am on the other side. My problem is seeing it for what it is in the present.
Don’t we all? Just me? This is why I write.
Six years ago today, we started a church. It was called Revive Church (3 1/2 years ago, that church merged with Austin Grace and became Central City Austin). Six years ago today, I didn’t know if I would just cry or throw up. Six years ago we had worked up to a launch of something brand new. Something that had burned in our hearts for years. Something we had prayed for, talked about, dreamed about and sacrificed for. Six years ago was a new beginning to something that had been stirring for a long time.
In six years, I have known more excitement, disappointment, discouragement, joy, fear, anticipation and have walked into more unknowns than I ever imagined and certainly more than I have in my life up to this point.
And you guys…we are just getting started.
Today it made me cry. A lot. Like, off and on all day (except for at the work bowling event, I maintained my cool…but my bowling score was terrible). I have never reacted to this day like this before. And today, the makeup is basically gone. I think I went through every emotion possible today. Some of it was gratitude. A lot of it was. But some others snuck in there and they screamed loud. It’s been a beautiful and really crazy and often difficult six years. Some times you just have to feel it. Today, I felt six years worth and even as I am writing, it sits in my throat and falls from my eyes.
The best is still yet to come. It always is with Jesus. It always is with His Church. It always is because we are His.
Today was Caleb’s Cup. My family makes me cry. They are have put one foot in front of the other, putting purpose to pain and inviting others to join them. I miss them something fierce today but I am beyond proud of them. I am so glad that God lets me call them mine.
Putting one foot in front of the other is always worth it. Always. God shows up in our faith steps, our grief, our joy and everything in between. He is good. He does not fail.
On Sunday, I led No Longer Slaves and while any part of that song is worth getting stuck on, this week I was stuck on our sea splitting God.
He split the stinking sea! He did it for his people. Jesus went to a cross and the veil in the temple…the separation between God and man was torn in two. He splits the sea, he tears the separation and calls us His own.
So here we go. Our God who splits seas and does not fail, He is with us, He goes before us, He made a way just to get to us and we are his people, He is our God, we are His Church.
This stretched thin heart can rest in the God who is that for his kids…