"I know life is hard, but I feel like it shouldn't be this hard."
^Topic of a recent conversation I had with an incredibly beautiful soul.
What shouldn't be this hard, you may ask?
1. Trusting God.
2. Maintaining friendships/relationships
And of course many other things... but this is what I'm sticking with for the sake of this conversation....because this is a conversation? ;)
1. Ok, so, intellectually, I get that God is perfect, can't change His will, is all loving, and ALWAYS wills the best for me. That being said, His way of going about it just doesn't always compute well with my little broken human intellect and such. For example, (not getting into the details, though most of the people who know me can probably hazard a guess) for a great length of time, I was working towards a specific goal, and I earnestly believed that it was God's will that I do. However, wouldn't you know it, said end goal ended up being swept from beneath me and lost its every ability to be an option. I must say, I can understand now, and have for a while, that I really was never meant to meet that goal, that it's better that I didn't. However... I really did think it's what I was meant for at the time... and I thought I was giving all that I had to do what was right. It wasn't perfect, but I honestly thought I was following God's will for me.
Ever since, even though, once again, I get it's better in the long run, I've found it a lot harder to trust God. Or maybe it's more just that I don't trust that I'm following Him. Or a little of both. I still find myself asking Him why He let me believe He wanted a certain end goal for me if He really didn't. It boggles my mind. And I know that everything is in His time and in His way, but I have to ask Him why He had to use methods that feel so underhanded to my broken heart. (disclaimer: I know He's not underhanded, etc. I'm just rude and imperfect and this is the best way for me to describe it... He and I have an understanding, I promise)
During a conversation with the aforementioned beautiful soul, she mentioned to me that she just had a friend who left the seminary because he realized his call was to be a husband and father. And he said that if he knew in the beginning that he would be leaving the seminary after four years to pursue the vocation of being a husband and father, that he probably wouldn't have been as committed to the formation he received in the seminary. But that formation is what he needed for the next step in his life.
I still don't know the precise reason I had to run headlong toward a goal that was never meant for me, but I have learned a great deal about myself in the process. I have also grown a lot stronger in some respects. I have grown to appreciate vulnerability and openness, even in myself, more than I have before. I also understand better how my heart operates, and some things that I will not live without. I am coming better to grips with my own worth, and that alone is tremendous, I think.
Everything has a purpose. I just have to focus on doing what's right. (And of course keep the focus on the Big Guy) Everything else will fall into place.
I put more emphasis on this because, for me right now, this seems to be more of a kicker. Not that it's more important...just that God is there at any time, for any reason, and can always love in the right way... He can't mess up. He never changes. People change. People are different. And weird. But beautiful! But weird.
It's so easy to be friends/maintain a relationship when we're always around each other and having a good time. But then there's distance. Then there's a fight/disagreement. Oh no! The world is ending!
That's how it seems sometimes. But WHY?? I mean, if you really love someone and act on what you believe is best for them, it should just easily follow and work right... right?
But then there's not speaking the same love language, not bearing burdens the same way, working things out differently, yada yada. Sometimes we want so badly to do something wonderful to help the other, but it can't be received the way we want because of how the other functions. And that really hurts sometimes. BUT IT'S OK. That doesn't demean what we've done in the least! The success of love is in the loving, right? It's natural in love to want what's best for the other person, but at the end of the day, it's all about the fact that we love them. It can be frustrating when our efforts aren't as fruitful as we'd like to see, but they still bear fruit!
I know that I'm far from being where I need to be... I don't have all the answers, and I never will. As much as I get frustrated with life and how complicated it can seem, I know it mostly comes down to my own limitations. I need to have more peace of heart. I need to own my own gifts. I need to love more strongly and more consistently. I need to seek beauty. I need to recognize beauty. I need to translate for those who don't see it. I need to smile more often. I need to recognize it's also ok to cry, be frustrated and what have you- emotions are part of being human. That being said, I also need to not run away with them, as I feel I am mostly a big ball of emotion. I need to forgive more, including forgiving myself. I need to trust my instincts and my upbringing.
I need so many things. But I also know that I'm given everything I need to meet those needs. Because, go figure, God wants us to be happy...not to think "this ain't all it's cracked up to be." (I'm listening to some Carolina Liar, hence the title... fit the mood/post though). If we ever get to a point where we're recognizing that something in our lives isn't what it's meant to be though... something's gotta change, be it our perspective, where we are laying our trust, or where we're seeking happiness. If it's not in the Good, it's gotta go, right?
In other news: I pray your day is filled with joy and beauty, and that your heart may be turned in such a way that you can perceive it.