As we prepare to go somewhere new, looking for the Lord’s will and dreaming of what is to come, as the future looks uncertain and our way is unclear, I find fear in my heart. Fear of a place I know well, fear of a place I don’t miss. I have learned another way. I write this to help me remember.
I remember that place in the darkness, that home I built for myself. With tightly clenched fists and scattered heart-pieces strewn, I sat, frozen in silence. My hungry heart held out had been bloodied, kicked, beaten one too many times. Not good enough. smart enough. experienced enough. enough. My heart is not enough.
They stood outside the perimeter looking in, nudging each other and whispering, “Is her heart is not strong enough? brave enough? trusting enough?” I drowned out the sound of their whispers with the sound of my own sorrow and built the walls of my home higher, higher, higher to block out their questioning eyes and bewildered faces. I built these walls to make us more comfortable. Because my fists and scattered heart-pieces are too messy for you, and because seeing you this way is too shameful for me.
I remember this place. Huddled against the cold walls I had built, I waited. waited. waited. waited. clenching and broken. alone in my pride-house. Terrified of expiring this way and longing for it. Wondering if the now very thin playing-running-light-filled-laughter in my memory ever existed at all or ever could exist again. I remember the way my fists clenched harder and more of the memory slipped through the cracks and away like sand. I remember what it was like to watch hope slip, slip, slip away until there was darkness and only darkness. Till my feeble attempts to glimpse the future saw only dark sadness and no light-filled-laughter, bleak-clenching-getting-by and no grace-drenched-open-hearted-living. I remember.
I remember when the light came. Slowly, gently, but boldly. The sun made no apologies for its brightness, was not ashamed to disrupt the quiet, was not timid in its coming. First glimpses burned my eyes, made the raw edges of my scattered heart-pieces ache for wholeness, frightened me there in the darkness.
I remember it was slow. Every day growing by only a sliver, gently warming me and helping my fingers to uncurl. I remember the fear that it would go away. That I would awake to find the light had been put out, extinguished. That the walls had been built too thick and too high. I remember that every day the sliver grew bigger, every day, the heart-pieces came closer to healing, every day, my fists unclenched just a little bit more.
I remember the day the light drew me out of my pride-house. I remember open hands and a heart mended and glazed by the sheen of light and grace. I remember tearing the walls down and letting the light in. I remember begging for it. I remember staring at it. I remember when it became food, life, breath to me.
I remember that the light is still growing.
Every day its presence grows more apparent, the quiet pinks and purples slowly illuminated by a vibrant yellow-orange brilliance, leaving nothing in the dark. Daily, this light shines on everything generously and, so doing, makes it beautiful. The yellow-orange glow accompanied by faint traces of purple and pink glints off the edges of my life, illuminates a mended heart, invites all who see it to begin again. To live in a way which reflects that brilliance.
I remember the way of Grace.