Will You Wait For Me?

I found this post buried in my blog archives this week, and decided it needed a second chance.  I originally wrote it two years ago, but I’ve rescued it, done some editing, and re-posted it here.  Maybe 24-year-old me had something to say, after all.  

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I’m reminded of a song by Alexi Murdoch – a great artist who I discovered on a very gray day in March about two years ago.  When I first listened to this song, I couldn’t decide whether the bare trees and pale sky had suddenly become more beautiful, or whether it was these words that made the day seem more alive.

And if I stumble, and if I stall,

And if I slip now, and if I should fall,

And if I can’t be all that I could be,

Will you, will you wait for me?

I’m remembering all of the mistakes I’ve made.  I’m remembering the times that I pushed and contorted and re-wrote relationships in my head, trying too hard to make them work.  I’m remembering the time when I betrayed my friends and wound up hurting a lot of people.  I’m remembering the accidents, the mis-communications, and the hurtful words I’ve said.

I’ve spent so much time wrestling with uncertainty. 

I’ve spent two years going through the motions of going to church and talking about Jesus and attending a Bible study, but I can’t seem to get over my pervasive doubt, born out of all the shattered expectations and messed up relationships and hypocritical Christians and suffering I’ve seen brought about by a God who promises to make everything work together for good for those who love him.  I know it all in my head, but I no longer feel anything in my heart.

Will you wait for me while I make mistakes?  Will you wait for me while I struggle to find meaningful relationships?  Will you wait for me while I struggle to figure it out?  Will you wait for me while I am uncertain?

Because I know that someday – granted I don’t die tomorrow – I will become more mature, more certain about what I believe, more sure of myself.

If I’ve learned anything at all over the past few years, it’s that honesty is never a wasted.  Friendship is never a mistake, even if it’s only for a short time.  Even when I find myself at the end of a relationship, wondering if the little bit of good in the beginning was worth the horribly painful mess at the end, it’s not for me to say whether I would have been better off alone. 

Yesterday as I was thinking about all of these things, I heard a small voice in my head.  “Do you trust me?”

Looking back, I see this tiny thread that’s connecting everything together.  I see the situations that have fallen into place at just the right time.  I’ve made mistakes, and learned from them.

After everything, I find myself saying “Yes, I trust you.  But will you wait for me?”

25 Was Not My Year

Before my 25th birthday, I had a major freak-out.

I always thought that 25 would be the year I finally had my life together.  When my parents cautioned me not to get married until I was 25, I always sighed and envisioned myself beating the men away with a stick between the ages of 18 and 24.  In reality, no stick was required.

And to add insult to injury, earlier that year I lost my “perfect job” along with the paycheck that paid my rent, and landed back in my childhood bedroom for the third time since college graduation.  Everyone knows 25 year-olds aren’t supposed to live with their parents.  25 year-olds are supposed to have apartments and jobs and significant others and a real life of their own.

continue reading at the rising

 

To be Seen

Some days remind me of this quote from my favorite movie.

Or have you ever, like, seen somebody? And you knew that, if only that person really knew you, they would, well, they would of course dump the perfect model that they were with, and realize that you were the one that they wanted to, just, grow old with. 

When Sandra Bullock’s character in While You Were Sleeping falls in love with a man she doesn’t even know, she wishes more than anything just to be seen.  Not just glanced at, but really seen.  Because there’s a difference after all between being seen and being seen [Read more…]

Life Experiments

October is my favorite month of the year, so to celebrate I am launching a brand new guest post series called “Life Experiments.”

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I believe that it’s okay to experiment, it’s okay to take risks, it’s okay to fail.  I’m looking for bloggers to share their stories about overcoming failure, adventuring, or trying new things.  If you would like to submit a post, email me a document, an idea, or a link to a blog post by Wednesday, October 1st.  I’d love to hear from you!

I will be posting a new “Life Experiment” every Friday in October (because Fridays are the best, after all).

There is a Season

It’s funny how some stories don’t seem meaningful at the time, but in the silence you realize they need to be told.

Right before my 25th birthday, I got a retail job.  A few months earlier I sat down at a table across from my principal and heard the dreaded words “We just don’t think you’re a good fit for us.”  I also had two part-time teaching jobs, but they barely paid enough to cover my gas to get there.  So, for about two weeks, I had a retail job. [Read more…]

When Everything Goes Wrong

“What are you afraid of?” he said. “Don’t you trust that God has a plan?” I had this conversation with a pastor in the beginning of my junior year of college.  I had spent the summer selling over-priced vegetable plants for minimum wage while my many of my friends had landed great internships, gone on exciting trips, or gotten engaged to the love of their life. The recession was in full swing, and I was terrified of what would happen when I was no longer living my life by a course catalog. God was at work in everyone else’s life, but was he going to take care of me?  [Read more…]

The Stories that are Unfinished

I remember learning about the elements of a story in my elementary school library, looking up at the overhead projector from my little table by the card catalog.  We learned that a story has a setting, characters, a plot, a conflict, and a resolution.  Nowadays, story has become a bit of a buzzword, as we often discuss how to tell a better story with our lives and write it in a way that draws other people in.  [Read more…]

The Hardest Part of Leaving

For months, I dreamed about leaving.

I sat in coffee shops talking with friends about how we were going to live more exciting lives some day, I recorded every episode of House Hunters International, and I spent a lot of time taking virtual vacations on Google Street View.

For years before that, I dreamed about staying. 

I wanted to put down roots, to form lifelong friendships, to find a job I loved, and to spend less time hauling boxes in and out of dorm rooms and houses and city apartments.  I’ve always known there’s something valuable about staying.  Communities need the ones who stay—the ones who are dedicated and responsible and stable.  In the English language, it’s hard to describe the need to leave without using words like flighty, restless, or discontent, and that’s not who I wanted to be.  [Read more…]

The Story of Hope and Heartbreak

I want to believe in miracles. 

I want to believe that crazy, unexplainable things are possible.  I want to believe that sometimes, life is so good that you want to laugh and cry and scream and sing all at once.  I want to believe that everything can change in a single moment and one day you will realize this is why.  This is why I love this place.  This is why my heart was broken. This is why I’ve waited.  This, right here.  I want to believe what Victor Frankl says about redemption—that while bad experiences cannot be erased, they can be redeemed.  [Read more…]