It’s been a Saturday kind of week. Not “let’s go to the soccer game and then out for ice cream” kind of Saturday. I’m thinking more Saturday wedged between Good Friday and Easter Sunday kind of Saturday.
Ironically occurring the week after Easter.
It’s been one of those weeks when the ground has shifted and everything I thought I knew is suddenly thrown into question. What do you do when you have been faithfully and obediently following a path of events for over two years, trusting God and stepping where He tells you to step, following a dream that He explicitly gave to you – then the path suddenly comes to a blatant dead-end, and you’re left holding pieces of a great big mess and wondering why in the world He would lead you here?
(It’s not a rhetorical question. I’d really love to know.)
Surely God cannot be so cruel. Surely He wouldn’t do this on purpose. Would He?
I suppose the disciples felt similarly on their Saturday, huddling in that upper room, wondering how their world could change so dramatically in just one week. I suppose they questioned everything they had seen and heard, wondering if God really is who He says He is.
I wonder if the disciples sprawled out on the floor and stared up at the ceiling, yelling from the tops of their heart-voices, “Really?!? What are you doing? Why would you do this to us? Have we not been obedient? Did we not trust you? Did we not give up everything for you?”
And, huddled in that upper room, I wonder if they concocted Plan B. I wonder if they decided that it’s easier and far less painful to be apathetic and resigned to their new life rather than holding out hope that God will turn it around. How could they trust Him when who they know Him to be cannot possibly align with what they are experiencing?
You may sense that I’m not really talking about the disciples anymore.
I came to believe in the very core of my being a few years ago that I don’t have to be afraid because God promises to never leave me. Whatever I face, I know He will be there.
But here’s the thing: you know how when you’re mad at someone, you don’t want to be around him? So the promises in Psalm 139 (“where can I go from your presence?”) are a little annoying right now. The One who is always with me and the One who alone has the power to hold me together as I crumble is the very One with whom I am furious.
It’s been a Saturday kind of week. I’ve gone from apathetic to angry to overwhelmingly sad to apathetic to scared to death of what my faith could look like when all of this finally shakes down.
Because it’s not over yet. There is still a small fraction of hope in this scenario that everything could turn around, but I’m terrified to hope because of the huge disappointment that could come if it doesn’t. After I (sort of) worked through my anger and disappointment and apathy, it occurred to me that perhaps God isn’t causing this but allowing it. Perhaps Easter Sunday has yet to come. Perhaps deliverance is around the corner. Perhaps the tables will soon turn.
I don’t know. And that’s what scares the snot out of me. I’m praying for the courage to fight, to believe, to not give up. I’m praying that God will show me who He really is. I’m trying to remember to believe the Truth that I do know – the simplest truths about how God really does love me, how He works all things together for good for those who love Him and are called according to His purpose, how His plans are good and perfect. I’m trying to remember to believe that Resurrection Sunday is coming. I don’t know what’s going to happen on my Sunday, and I don’t know when it will occur, but what else can I do? I claw and scratch and cling to solid ground, trying desperately to regain my balance and open my eyes, squinting into the light.
Because this darkness? Not such a great place to be.
But Sunday is coming.