So there’s the sound of mass chaos in the morning over brushing teeth…over toothpaste in the sink. Mass chaos in the everyday grind of papers and honking horns and washing dishes. So much noise all around, that it’s harder to hear behind it all this song that sings mercy and grace attempting to keep this patience in me still. A song that reminds of the redemption–that sings love over me in the fulfillment of a promise. A song that reminds that life is bigger than these oh so small noisy times that aim to separate from Truth and meaning…
I’m doing this AHHH-MAZING devotional this advent season. If you’ve never done shereadstruth.com, jump on! I’m doing the Emmanuel study. And here’s what I’ve been reminded of.
This Christmas I’m reminded of how sin and discord separates us from the Lord; of how when amidst that darkness of a sinful life, I flee from the arms of my Lord… I mentioned in previous posts (either directly or indirectly) that my family is not doing “well.” The sad thing, it’s over pride and pettiness. And I struggle. How much is enough? When do we wash our hands and walk away? When do we lay on <even more> grace? And Why must it come from us?
Someone, in the light of it all, questioned my Christianity. Someone who I will say has never adopted Christian beliefs…except maybe through marriage. And what’s sad is that in as many ways as I’ve always respected him (and believe me– I’ve hardly ever known a better man), I’ve always been hurt by the attitudes and slights he’s given toward my work in the church (except when it’s come to his son). To say I’m angry or defensive is the farthest thing. I’m disappointed in the man, hurt by someone I’ve spent a majority of my life looking up to. I’d be lying though if I didn’t say that to an extent, he’s called out my pride–made me examine my choices. Yes, it was time… Yet at the same time, I once again bury the hurt that his words have caused as I realize he’s naively pointed the finger in the most hypocritical way, as though walking away is “unChristian-like.” Friends, that’s not God’s Truth– that’s where I’ve found myself separating from the Lord. Could it be? My fellow believers, is it unChristian-like to walk away from relationships that bring us down? To walk away from relationships that have proven to be everything less than deep and sacrificial? I thought THAT’s what Christianity is…sacrificial. A continual laying down of oneself, admitting your wrongs, forgiving the wrongdoings… How many times do we see in Scripture that it is okay to walk away when that’s not happening–and to do so with grace. To literally walk away as your heart is made right, leaving behind forgiveness.. it’s okay. IT’S OKAY!
Someplace in Pride, has been lost the true underlying meaning of what family really is. And of what real Christianity is supposed to be–if some would take the time to find it… Forgiveness. Redemption. Grace. But here’s the hard truth I’ve found… and warning: it may upset some readers… If some “family” doesn’t get that or doesn’t want to accept that, then they were never “family” to begin with…and that’s where I choose to walk away, knowing, “it’s okay” to walk away.
I’ve been so blessed to know what real family is, to understand relationships with a foundation of genuinity. To watch forgiveness and grace in action. To see redemption blessed in glorious relationships. The ironic part is that it’s always been in my “un”family. Quite honestly, I rejoice over and over in that while at the same time have allowed my heart to break as I watch the opposite happen in what I thought my “real” family has always been…
There’s a joyful sound that sings through the pain though. And it’s begging for humility. My prayer last night and it was a LONNNNGGG prayer was that God would open my eyes to the pride that is separating me from Him and who He’s ordained to be in my life. This morning I woke with peace. And I reached out…still walking away from some, clinging to others.
Because some relationships are more important than others. Like the ones that were built upon His love. Or the ultimate One that brings eternity; it’s the same one that teaches redemption. Pride and accusations had separated me from seeking out the Truth that matters far more to my heart than them. And so there comes an eternal forgiveness. And the promise to never be separated again.
There’s this beautiful and JOYFUL sound that I refuse to let be sung in my heart if I’m battling wars that have already been won. So there.
It’s Christmas time. Peace Divine. <–no but really, peace. It’s okay. Peace was given for a reason. But don’t just hear my rant… please don’t just hear this honest rant. Examine your relationships too–examine the peace, and know that in it all, He’s here with us. Emmanuel.