Mountaintop to Mundane...Keepin' it Real

1:15 PMHeather

Last December, I laid around in my jammies.  For a month.  Nothing but rest, rest, rest.  Doctor's orders.  After a freak-out at about day 6, I settled in nicely.  Realized what a treat it was.  I could get use to that.  You know--resting.  No agenda or task list.  People pitching in.  

I was feeling so refreshed at the start of the new year.  Began to see some fresh perspective on my life. And faith.  And a very strong sense that my job for 2014 was to sit at Jesus' feet.  To learn to do what Mary did.  Instead of doing what Martha did.  Rest in His presence.  Posture myself near His capable hands.  Instead of working away in the kitchen demanding He make others help me. Practice the discipline of repeatedly, over and over, asking Him to help me sit at His feet. Breathe in, breathe out.

Oh, yes.  I was resolved. 

Then, eleven days ago, I went to the glorious IF Gathering in Austin.  Powerful worship.  Speaker after speaker pouring out truth that challenged me, spoke healing to me, strengthened me.  I came out of the gates like so many others.  What was that?  Greatness, that's what.  And feeling all like my life was shifting into focus.  Like the lens setting was changing and things were becoming clearer.

I was all, "Go God!"  And, "Life is awesome!"  And, "I'm on top of the world!"

Approximately 4 days later, life stepped in.  Well, sorta rushed at me full boar.  Nothing in particular, mind you.  Just the usual.  Demands of parenting.  And paying bills.  And tasks lists.  And opinions of others.  And fatigue.  Throw in a migraine and some allergy nonsense.  Some lingering nerve pain as I tried to regain my level of fitness, pre-surgery. Dishes.  Laundry.  Dust bunnies.

BOOM!  Flattened.  Full force, flat on my face wiped out.  I'm just keepin' it real here, bloggy friends.  Because I had so many incredible spiritually deep insights and wisdoms to impart today.  Rolling around in my head.  

Then, somewhere between the produce aisle and the empty shelf of something I needed at the grocery store, I thought, "Who am I kidding?"  Gotta be authentic.  And transparent.

This living thing is hard.  Life is hard.  And I'm ridiculous, I know, because the things that seemed to slay me these last few days are truly first world problems.  Ugh.  The housework to do.  The laundry to fold.  The newly redecorated girl's room to reassemble.  (Yeah, I know.  I hear myself.  Really I do.  It's ridiculous I'm all stressed about hanging that new chandelier and twinkle lights...which I feel the need to say that I bought on sale!)

Do you ever have those days when you just want to huddle in the corner and shut yourself from the world--not because something awful happened--but just because life happened?

And it wasn't all sunshine and roses.  So, the euphoria feeling you thought was a sudden discovery of lasting joy becomes a fading flash of happiness based on circumstance.  A few days ago, you thought you'd never realized God's love like you just felt it.  And now all you hear are the old familiar lies.  

You aren't worthy.

You're unlovable.

You are doing all the hard work ALL alone.

Those precious darlings you birthed are not pulling their weight.

Marriage is hard.  

People are so rude.  

Faith feels like a flash in the pain that you grasp only when surrounded by 1,200 women singing inspiring praise songs in unison right after some amazing speaker zaps you with some freeing truth from God's word. It feels like the smoke and lights and mirrors were a mirage, perhaps.

And like a dejected teenager the week after youth camp, you feel almost like you are right back where you started.  Except it feels worse.  Because now you've experienced where you'd like to stay.  The mountaintop experiences pretty much rock.  And you'd like to pitch a tent and camp out there.  Your eyes have been opened.  You felt a strength from and connection to God like never before.

But, the jobs and duties and tasks of life are calling from the valley.  It's oh-so-easy to manage relationships when you are spending the weekend away from them.  Then, right back in the trenches you go.  To the same everyday battles.  

The same fight to choose to run to the Rock that is higher than you and trust Him to hold you, right there in your frustration.  Because you just don't feel you can keep holding on yourself.

Or you can choose to give in to the grumpy that is taking you over.  

Hmmm.  Stand firm and take root and get back up again to choose to believe God's Word.

Or stay flat on the floor and throw that pity party that your selfish nature is planning.

It's hard.  

Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.  Hebrews 11:1

Gotta admit.  God's presence and love and peace is a bit harder to see here, behind the piles of laundry and dirty dishes.  Here in the everyday, where I slug it out to ensure I'm strategizing so that all three kids get where they need to go, when they need to get there.  Bombarded by emails and ads and junk mail.  Away from the thundering praise music in the Austin Music Hall and the glorious lighting.  Where my real world seemed--well, so manageable.  

But here we are.  And I have a choice to make.  Choose faith.  Choose to believe that God is who He said He is.  And He loves me like He says He does.  And He really is enough.  Even for the overwhelming weight of the mundane.  Even for the unsatisfied craving of that mountaintop that is so hard to maintain in everyday life.  Because it's terribly hard to spend hours everyday in the Word and worship while life tugs at you from all sides.

Confidence of what I hope for.  Assurance of what I do not see.  

With a weak and shaky voice, I cry out.  Here I am, Lord.  I want to choose faith.  Help me.  Help me to believe that you are the light of the world, shining into the darkest moments, the dullest tasks, the hardest monotony.  

And, I'll mutter under my breath, as I switch the clothes to the dryer and unload the groceries.  "I choose to sit.  At your feet.  Here.  Help me!  Help my unbelief!"

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