I try, I really do. There are so many things to be thankful for, things that happen every day that I take for granted. My eternal future secured in Heaven. My family's love. My friends' trust. A roof over my head. Transportation that doesn't expose me to the elements. Money in the bank. Seriously, what more could I ever want? What I do have is more than I need, and so much more than I deserve. And yet, as the pages of my life flip past, I seem to highlight the negative events and bury the positives.
What's wrong with me this time? Remember a couple months ago, I wrote a post exploring why I sometimes feel empty inside? But I have been reading the Bible, every day, taking special note of something I can apply to my life. I have been praying, lately more than usual because I have several friends that just recently needed more intercession. What have I been doing, or not doing, the past two weeks that's new?
I sit here, writing this, listening to music, because I think that's the only way to live--with music playing. And I realized what's different. My music is different. Not different like, a different genre of music (that would be an entirely different post). Different because, about a month ago, I got a bunch of songs from a new CD off Amazon. The first two weeks after I got the songs, I listened to them maybe, two or three times. But then I switched to listening to Christmas music as I did Christmas crafts with my son. But about two weeks ago, I remembered my new music and decided to listen to it instead.
"More and More Like You"
If I call, will You come
When I cry, do You hear
I believe every tear
Is caught up by a faithful God
So I will cry until You come
Cast my cares into Your arms
I can't see past this storm
But I'm counting on a faithful God
You hold my life secure
All my days are Yours
My God is like a fire defending me
But then the second song up there comes up on my playlist. I hear the words lilting to the music, and the never-ending promise of God to be there always seeps into my insecurities. By the time the song comes to the end, where it says, "I am Yours, and You are mine, and I am Yours" (yes, it repeats, and it's so beautiful), I think I'm ready to sing "More and More", and really mean it.
But then I turn my music off and go through the house, continuing my day. I get in the car and walk through stores, and that little thread of closeness to God I felt when these songs were playing seems to evaporate, like the world is sapping His peace out of my heart.
I know I can't live in a bubble. That would be nice, but it's impossible. So the next best thing is to keep my heart in a bubble. I like living with peace. I think even in the darkest days of my life, I've had joy (you know, a song in my heart, not necessarily able to spring forth from my lips, but a song in there somewhere), but I haven't always had peace. I don't know that I'm talking about peace as the opposite of worry, because I think I'm learning how to live with my palms open to God. I mean being able to smile even when things don't go my way. Being able to sigh (with a good attitude) after I've done hard work and my body aches. Letting my pet peeves roll off my back like water off a duck's.
I feel like I need to end this with a solution. "If you're also experiencing what I've talked about today, here is how I overcame it, and maybe you can too." But as of right now, I don't really have a solution. If you've felt like what I've described and you found a way to keep God's peace in your heart all the time, by all means, please tell me! When the ungratefulness creeps in and replaces the peace, I struggle to get it back. Why is walking with God so hard?
(The quality isn't the best, and the preacher talks until 1:15. But the words are still good.)
"Come, Let Us Return to the Lord"