Oh, friends. I sit here completely exhausted and in awe of everything that has happened and I feel compelled to write it out, to tell you of the amazing mercies of a God who gives us exactly what we need exactly when we need it.
This weekend we, my people and I, embarked on Goals Weekend. We got together and the goal was to set some goals and to be together.
When I first heard the concept, I felt like it was something I wanted to do and was supposed to do with these people. My people, who have never met a crazy idea, went all in with me. We planned it, prayed over it, and found amazing things to do in it.
And God kept reassuring me He was going to move there. I assumed He meant in my people, in their goals. And maybe He did. But He moved in me; that I know for sure.
You know the trouble with this crazy heart. Last week I went to the cardiologist and he started formulating a plan for testing. Friday I had my blood drawn to test for heart failure among other things. The longer I sat with that possibility, the more terrifying it got. I’m not a big fan of any kind of failure, but failure of a major organ was definitely not in the cards. I didn’t plan for that. I didn’t have anything in any of my backup plans to cover that. As a 41 year old control freak, I don’t even know what to do with that.
And yet it was time for Goals Weekend, the thing I had been waiting for and praying for and been so excited for. Yet, my mind was preoccupied and my heart was heavy…literally and figuratively. I knew I was supposed to lead it, but the wind was knocked out of my sails.
Friday night they watched a movie and I sat in the other room and thought and worried and talked to one of my other people via text. I felt myself getting more and more scared about the outcome, about what it would mean for me, about whether or not there was even a future to plan for. That night as I laid on my chaise beside my people while they slept, I mentally had a conversation with God. You should know by now, my conversations with God aren’t always reverent. He knows my heart so why would I not be honest.
Listen God. I don’t understand why this is happening. I don’t get why we need to do this now. What the heck did you let me buy this house for if you’re just gonna kill me off? Why do I need to set goals if I’m not going to be around to achieve them? Why all this prayer and planning just to have it all fall apart right here at the end? God I’m really angry at you. It’s not fair.
By that point, I was angry crying, so I went to the other room so as not to disturb anyone. (I also thought I was flying under the radar, but later I found out someone knew I was crying.)
Eventually, I laid back down and slept for a few hours. The next day I woke up early cuz that’s apparently a thing now and tried to push it all out of mind to focus on the task at hand. In case you’re wondering, I am terrible at pushing these things out of my mind. But we started doing the things. There was good conversation (that I was honestly half listening to) and personal goal activity time. We watched some great videos (luckily I had watched them before so focus wasn’t necessary)
As the day wore in, the worry got heavier. By 10:00 the lab results were to be the online record system and being a nurse I knew what we were looking for. I tried to conceal my worry, my fear, the fact that I’d all but thrown in the towel, but my people know me too well. In the evening, we had a little downtime and I literally was laying on a pillow in someone’s lap (if you know me that’s weird) and they were fiddling with my hair and I fell asleep. People started milling around to start making dinner. I woke up and went into the kitchen to see if I needed to do something and when they had it covered, I just went back to the couch, overwhelmed with the apprehension of the test results and the fear and despair.
When my friend sat next to me I couldn’t keep it in anymore. And I literally sobbed, hard tears of all the things. They prayed over me and called on Jesus to do mighty things and that the results would be fine and prayed with such faith. Their faith also made me cry because why do I not have that. Why can I not believe that it will work out, that it WILL actually be ok regardless of whatever the numbers are. And then they just held me while I cried, tears and snot and all the things.
Later, when the clock struck 10ish I snuck away. I mumbled something about a bathroom thinking I could leave, process, and come back. I pulled up the results and I couldn’t believe what it said.
Whether or not the miracle my friend had prayed for from God occurred, I do not know. Whether or not this was that miracle I had recently asked God why He never did for me or my friends, only He knows. But the test showed no signs of failure.
And I cried. This time tears of relief and disbelief. Then I was coming through the kitchen when she rounded the corner.
“Did you get the results?” Spent and in disbelief I answered, Ya. It was negative. It was good. “It was good? Wait, it was good?!” And she let out a cheer.
And she relayed the information to the room. Cheering from my people followed and I, still in disbelief at all the things, went back to the strange place I found peace, my head on the lap of my friend with her arms around me, the safe place where I somehow found comfort even when physical touch is always something awkward for me. These people. My people. They love me like no one else can. They know how to breach my security system. They love me well even when I don’t deserve it.
They show me things that I need. They model this faith that everything will be okay and even if it’s not we’ll still be ok. I don’t know how to have that faith yet. Faith that the bottom won’t drop out at any moment. But they do. And they’re teaching me. God’s teaching me through them. These lessons have been hard fought. But these women. Oh friends. These women hold me up when I cannot anymore. They fight for me when I don’t even have the strength to do anything but cry. They intercede for me when the only words I have for God are unkind. They are proof of God’s goodness to me.
This morning as I sat with them all at my church, the song came again. God you’re so good. God you’re so good. God you’re so good. You’re so good to me. And all I could do was cry, not because I don’t believe it, but because He is. God IS so good to me. When I don’t deserve it. When I don’t have the eyes to see. When I’m out of fight and out of hope, He’s so good to me. He surrounded me with people who have all those things in stores and freely use them on behalf of me.
Again I say, as I have before, I’m not sure I would survive 2018 and now add January 2019 without these people. But what I know for sure is I wouldn’t have survived INTACT without these people. With goals in hand, I’m ready to charge bravely into the rest of this year and beyond with a renewed focus and hope and faith that what God is promising He will provide.
Stay tuned. I was gonna tell you about my goals but I think that’s for another day. Today I bask in God’s kindness.