Here in Arizona the sunrise has been at about 7:20, and sunset has been at about 5:20. If we were living in Maine, sunrise would be at 7:02, and sunset would be at 4:00 (I got this info from here). For some reason, though, to my mind I’m feeling the absence of light more significantly while living here, in this particular year, than I ever did during the long winters in Maine.
It’s not difficult to draw a direct correlation to the absence of light in my psyche.
Life just seems dark in general, even when I’m sitting in a brightly lit room or standing in direct sunlight. It’s like I can’t absorb it, can’t open my eyes wide enough to let it in. It has been a struggle, my friends. To just keep going, to take things day by day, to manage the things that are in my control, and to let those things go that are not in my control. I’m not experiencing life, so much as I’m a passenger in my own mind, observing in a detached way everything that goes on beyond the narrowing field of my diminishing peripheral vision.
It has been a struggle to maintain optimism, to kindle hope for the future, and to believe in the knowledge that “everything will be okay in the end.” (“If it’s not okay, it’s not the end.”) I know I’m not alone in experiencing this condition, this sense of hopelessness. Knowing I’m not alone doesn’t make me feel any less lonely, though. Even with my loving and wonderful husband, and the shared stresses that we support one another in – in the end, we’re solitary in our own minds while trying to deal with the crap that life keeps dishing out.
I find myself turning to one of my Grandmother’s favorite scriptures, which also happens to be a running theme in a series of books that I’ve read and am re-reading. “Philippians 4:13, for Pete’s sake!” Which is, “I can do everything through Him who gives me strength.” You all know me, I’m not a Bible thumper by any stretch of the imagination. But I do have a deep and abiding belief in God that has somehow survived the complete and total disenchantment that I have with religion in general.
Somehow, over a stretch of time whose beginning escapes me, I forgot that one cannot (or at least, should not) believe in God, without having faith in God. My heart has been closed off to that concept for quite some time, now. I’m a self-sufficient person, and the thought that I should give up control of every little aspect of my life that I’m dissatisfied with, well, that just seems counter-intuitive. How can I change it, if I don’t control it, after all? Haven’t I nodded my head in agreement at the statement, while secretly thinking on the inside that those folks who just “cast their burdens unto the Lord”, that they’re, well, kind of lazy? Or deluded?
And yet… and yet.
There is something in my heart – something beyond my logical and pragmatic nature – that is full and happy and safe in the knowledge that God is real and He is just waiting for me to let go. I’ve known He was there all along, like the air that surrounds us, but I’ve been holding my breath like a petulant child pitching a fit because I’m not getting my way. I need to breathe deep, trust that He provides, and that He will guide my life in the direction it needs to go. I may not always understand it, I may not always agree with it, and His movement in my day to day life may not be obvious to me. But what is faith, if not trust in those things that we do not understand?
I’m a little nervous to click on “publish”, to be honest. Talking about God makes me feel more vulnerable than just about any other subject I could touch upon. I hope you all take this post in the manner it was intended, which is to give a little hope and remind us that there are greater things out there than what revolves around us in our own little lives. Take from it what you will – as for me, well, I’m just trying to open up my heart and let a little light in.