Many times I wish that God would pour out His mercy and grace on a relationship, a circumstance or just a really bad attitude (many times my own). Too often it seems no matter how hard I try, how much I pray, or how deeply I desire it – it doesn’t come fast enough. In a culture so used to immediate gratification, the waiting is sometimes agonizing. It feels punishing. Might I say, debilitating? Ugh.
Have you ever been in one of those places, spaces or relationships where you feel like you just can’t breathe?
You can’t be you, and they can’t be them, because there’s something stuck in the middle? A big white elephant, perhaps, but far more likely it’s a tiny little itty-bitty sliver of something else. Jealousy. Envy. Hurt. Bitterness. Resentment. Pride.
A few small words that pack a big punch.
Businesses, relationships, families, friendships and whole communities have fallen out over words no bigger than these. Six little words whose weight on the scale far surpass that old familiar elephant standing in the room. What do we do with it? How do we move forward when we’re stuck in the unknowing, unresolved, uncomfortable world of wait?
I’ve done all the things. Sometimes I cover, sometimes I hide, sometimes I fight or flee or both in some strange way at the exact same time. I may walk away while my mind shouts out all the words and feelings there isn’t space or safety to say out loud. In our own imperfect way we do what it takes to make our point or present our case so we can be heard. So we can be right.
And we wait.
What if we’re doing it wrong? What if it’s not about proving, pleasing, presenting or performing? What if we don’t have to try or teach or tell our tall tale? My feelings can be so fickle that sometimes I get so wrapped up in a problem, I stop seeing solutions. I stop seeing people.
What if we stop running or fighting or talking so much about the problem and just show up as a person? What if our presence is enough?
I’ve been absent the last week. Absent here at the blog, on social media and the numerous distractions that sometimes numb my day. Why? My mom was here. It’s been over a year and I soaked in every minute having her here. From the tiny ways she helped with cooking, cleaning and homework, playing games of cards and Scrabble — to the deeply healing and restorative ways we studied God’s word, and grew and grafted together. If you’ve read my book you know we have history, and there are wounds in our story. But it is ours. And it is so good.
This week, fully immersed in each other’s presence, grace showed up. Stripped of the pleading, pretending, positioning and proving we were able to simply be. Together. The simple gift of presence afforded us the opportunity for our real selves to show up and be seen. For our hearts to be known. For our fears and our dreams to be recognized not out of righting the past, but reclaiming our future.
Last week I chose to stop doing what needed to be done. I chose to listen instead of talk. I chose to play instead of work. I determined to rest instead of worry. Slowly I’m learning that when I choose to see people instead of problems – when I choose to embrace what is instead of hustling for what could be – when I rest in knowing who I truly am no matter if someone else doesn’t see it, appreciate it, or even like it – grace shows up.
When we simply offer the gift of our presence; in one small moment we both give and receive the greatest gift of all: Grace.
Perhaps you’ve grown weary of a heartache, disappointment, relationship or situation that just isn’t right. Maybe it doesn’t feel fair. Perhaps you haven’t felt heard, or there’s a big fat elephant standing not only in the room but directly on top of your heart. Maybe you feel like you just can’t breathe. I’ve been there a thousand times in a hundred different ways and in some ways I’m still right there too. But maybe you don’t need to do it the way you thought; maybe you don’t need to say every single thing that you feel; maybe it’s okay to let go for now, finding hope while you wait, knowing that maybe somewhere in the waiting, someday your presence will be enough.
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Live and love well my friends. xo