Five Minute Friday: Want

Along the Way @ mlsgregg.com (1)

Gentle Reader,

Wrapped in the golden haze of this early summer evening, I stare out the small square of window that remains unblocked by the air conditioning unit and the closed blinds. Faded roses, in desperate need of pruning, grab my attention. If it’s possible to feel like a spent blossom looks, then I do. Long week.

Knowing that my area is sliding into the tortuously warm sunny season deepens the weariness. Tonight, thankfully, the temperature is bearable. Even pleasant.

Kate asks us what we: want.

Go.

Tomorrow is another day, Scarlett says.

Another doctor’s visit.

This life of chronic illness is one of slow, uphill climb toward a peak always hidden. Some days I face the trek with brave, squared shoulders and a smile on my face. Other days, I sit, back pressed against the immovable ledge, feet dangling into nothingness. There is no end in sight and the idea of continuing grates on the soul.

I want an end.

My thoughts are not bleak. I’m not hopeless. What I am is tired. Tired of the pain in my side, of seeing the doctor, of not sleeping well, of being tired. Tomorrow’s visit is about a prescription. Next month is the needle and the vials. In the not-distant future are the biopsy and the MRI.

I’m sure what I need is to have a good cry, the kind that sends me crashing into the oblivion of dreamless sleep. Things will look better in the morning. I want them to look better now, but if there is one thing I have learned, it’s that joy is the grit that gets you through the not-better moments. It keeps you looking into the hope of the guaranteed future in the presence of the Lord.

These mountain pauses, I don’t think my Savior condemns me for them. I think He sits next to me, in the space of grace, understanding that my spirit longs to fly but my body is made of cement. He points out things to me, things in the valley below that only He and I know about. It is our history together. Deceptively beautiful meadows filled with gorgeous, poisonous blooms. Sticky, dark swamps. Crossroads.

The rock pokes my back. Dirt feels rough beneath my hands. Sweat slides down my neck. I will not sit here long, for it is not comfortable. Difficult as the journey is, it is preferable to remaining still. I know He will offer me His hand and pull me onward soon. Where would I be, if not for the Lord? Yes, if not for the Lord. Isn’t that the tagline of our lives?

Some days I feel as if there is no end, but my theology preaches otherwise.

I want the otherwise.

More than that, more than wanting an end, what I am learning, slowly, to want the very most is God. Give me God. I am no saint. I whine. I complain. I sometimes swear. But if I have to spend the rest of my life attempting to surmount the Everest of sickness but the taxing ascent, the climb that will take everything I have, means knowing and loving Him better, if it means the true and sweet intimacy of relationship with the Master, then tired as I get, cranky as I can be, give me the thin air and the taunt muscles and the inability to look back for fear of falling. If in the mysteriousness of Divine will and fallen universe this obstacle is what is required to keep me close to His side, then so be it.

Lord Jesus, on days like today when I cannot take another step, please give me more of You. When I tremble in fear of the unknown, strengthen my trust in You. When I weep in the pain and the sorrow, comfort me. Most of all, Lord of All, please allow me, as You did Moses, to know and see You. I do not want to be anywhere You aren’t.

Stop.

I find particular comfort in this psalm set to music right now.

May you be encouraged.

My journey to faith. (15)

Photo Credit: Cosmic Timetraveler
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14 thoughts on “Five Minute Friday: Want

  1. Oh, WOW, Marie. This is just beautiful. Gorgeous.

    But while your words are exquisite, so, too, is your message. I’ve also had to learn the hard, bitter lesson that hardship is worth it if it gives me more of Him.

    Praying for you tonight.

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  2. I get it. While our circumstances are different, and mine is more mental than physical, i get wanting it all to be over. So many times I ask if this can be taken from me; I’m reminded of Jesus asking if the cup could be taken from him, but still saying “your will be done”: I wish he’d take this cup from me, daily, but if it’s His will for this to continue, may I still trust that He will use it for his glory.

    So many times i’ve been referred to Psalm 30 for comfort: there may be weeping for the night, but joy comes in the morning. While I believe wholeheartedly that some days, the morning makes all the difference, there are some days where I can’t help but ask: why can’t there be joy NOW? Why do I have to wait for the morning for this to end? It can be comforting some days, but angering on others: I don’t want to wait for the morning to feel better, sometimes.

    Your mountain imagery reminded me of a song, called Nothing I Hold Onto by United Pursuit. There’s a line in the song that I cling to: “i will climb this mountain with my hands wide open.” I want to be like that: climbing this mountain I’m on with my hands open, leaning on Him to get me through.

    Love you, friend. I want your mountain to be over, too.

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  3. Wow!….What a beautiful and poignant reminder that the true treasure of life, in any season, mountaintop or valley…is the heart of Jesus Christ. Thank you for your faithfulness to pursue Him through this trial! Praying you will find relief!

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  4. Oh friend, my heart hurts for you. I want the pain to end. I want you to get answers. Praying always for and with you. Love you! I’m in the #8 spot this week.

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  5. Hugs heading your way today, Marie and lifting you up in prayer. Cannot imagine the hard you walk each day. Thank you for leaning into our Savior…for in doing so you encourage us all so. This: yes: “if it means the true and sweet intimacy of relationship with the Master”…then, let us embrace the pain and find our Heavenly Father holding us tight, lifting us upward and onwards…Joining you in your beautiful prayer today. Thank you also for sharing that wonderful worship song.

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  6. Marie,
    “joy is the grit that gets you through the not-better moments”.
    Yes.
    I’m sitting on the mountain myself. Just barely got up above the fog of humble valley. It’s been a ten month journey and I know I will have to cross through it again.
    I’m bruised and broken and thankful.
    Your song, though, such a balm for my weary cemented body!
    Thank you for lifting me up, sweet sister!!
    Love,
    Tammy
    ( #16 this week)

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  7. This is just BEAUTIFUL, Marie. I don’t know if it’s because I’m partial to what you wrote due to the chronic illness aspect of it and the fact that I just kept nodding, knowingly, at each sentence…or if it’s just because I truly think it’s the most beautiful thing you’ve written. Ok, maybe both.

    “This life of chronic illness is one of slow, uphill climb toward a peak always hidden. Some days I face the trek with brave, squared shoulders and a smile on my face. Other days, I sit, back pressed against the immovable ledge, feet dangling into nothingness. There is no end in sight and the idea of continuing grates on the soul.

    I want an end.”

    I have felt this way on so many occasions. I know my battle hasn’t looked a thing like yours. So different. But so long and up hill and sending me to bed on more occasions than I can count for my children to be cared for by their dad instead of me. I am grateful for the prayers He’s answered. While healing may never come, he’s sat beside me on this long road and has brought so much restoration that I just didn’t even want to recognize before.

    Love this, friend. Love you. You make me want to be brave. ❤

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  8. Oh my friend… praying for you today… and this: “joy is the grit that gets you through the not-better moments. It keeps you looking into the hope of the guaranteed future in the presence of the Lord.” Gah! Praying Joy in abundance!

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  9. So I am going to share this with my father in law. He is going through something similar. This post gave me insight of maybe of how he is feeling. I really liked when you said “I think He sits next to me, in the space of grace, understanding that my spirit longs to fly but my body is made of cement” lifting up a prayer for you now, Marie. visiting from #30

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  10. Thank you for this beautiful message. I am just beginning a long journey through deep valleys and hard, hard mountains to climb with my husband and my only hope is Jesus. Visiting from FMF (#71).

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  11. Heart-felt, heart-wrenching truth. Thank you for sharing. Your words are beautiful and always so well expressed. May our reliance on the Lord always be the tagline of our lives! Love this: “if there is one thing I have learned, it’s that joy is the grit that gets you through the not-better moments.” Thank you for your vulnerability and truth. Praying you get that good cry in His everlasting arms! Blessings!

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  12. Dear Ones,

    I apologize that I wasn’t able to interact with each of your comments when this was initially posted. It’s been a rough few weeks in this dumb body of mine. I am blessed by your kindness, your encouragement, your prayers and your friendship. May God send His rivers of love and peace into your hearts today!

    Like

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