Tuesday, March 1, 2011

These hands

I wrote last night about taking a road trip with God. About visiting those grave sites along the highway of this journey of life, where pieces of my heart have been scattered and buried. I feel I'm in the process of watching God lead me to dig those pieces out of their dirt-filled graves, recovering them all, putting them back together as something whole. Something new and different than it was before. But revisiting those graves can be intimidating. Those memories can make my chest ache and overwhelm my thoughts, longing for resolution and healing, eliciting emotions I don't know what to do with. It can be hard not to turn back.

What I didn't write last night is that some of those pieces of my heart actually died, but some of them were simply buried alive. Unlike my heart, which longs for life, there are some memories that need to be recovered in order to be buried properly. Some things from the past are longing to be put to rest. But I have to uncover them first, before they can be buried once and for all.

Lately I've wondered if my worship of God has dried up. Honestly, since my Dad died, it hasn't been the same. At times it feels more down-to-earth and authentic, more raw and yet grounded, than it did before. But most of the time, I feel very little. It doesn't mean I don't worship God, because worship isn't dependent on emotion, but it's been much too easy for me to adjust to what feels like an emotional distancing from God. I've lost my sense of expectation that when I seek Him, He'll actually show up - that He actually wants to show Himself to me. At the core of who I am, I know I still love Him dearly. I'm more aware, however, of how frail my expression of that love can be.

I've been listening to the words of David Crowder's song, "He is the love" (which I posted on my last entry), on repeat. The more I hear the words, the more they penetrate the protective layer of my heart that has masqueraded as dryness. I think of the hands of Jesus, about what they have meant to me over the years. How I have held them as a child, grasped them in friendship, dug my fingernails into them when in need of protection, wept into them as my heart has been breaking, pushed them away in my pain, gripped them in times of testing, and all but let them go in my doubt. Those beautiful, weathered, scarred hands, full of strength and gentleness. Those hands of a craftsman, an artist. Those hands of a Father.

How I see now that I love those hands. My heart is not as dry as I thought; it is still in the process of healing. It's these hands that remind me I can trust Him on this leg of the journey. He's never let go.

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