“Just let it go.” That’s what people say about stuff from the past usually related to poor choices and mistakes. It’s what I say. You can’t change the past. It is what it is. But “just let it go” is way easier said than done.
Yet, to live in the Kingdom of heaven means unconditional surrender, it means I have to live a “let it go” way now. I want to live a “let it go” way, but how? Who I am now is a new creation living in the old wine skin of who I used to be. Who I used to be was influenced by multiple people and events that have taken place over a lifetime. Why do I hold fast so hard to who I used to be?
A couple of months ago, I decided to seek counseling to find out. I’ve tried this multiple times over the years without much fruit to show for it, mainly because it is really hard. I so don’t want to relive the past. There is a lot of heartache going back there. But I’m really tired of the past influencing the now. I’m tired of reacting to life in the same way that I did then. I’m tired of the old me getting in the way of the new me. I’m tired of running away when things get hard and/or scary.
I want to be all in. I want to love and be loved fully, not holding people at arms length because of this crazy fear of heartbreak, because of what might happen. My strong need for self preservation is getting in the way of unconditional love and unconditional surrender. It’s like a sinking ship. I’m hanging onto the railing of the bow all the while the Lord is trying to pry open my frozen grip to save me before I drown.
Oh I want to be saved! I choose unconditional surrender. Whatever it takes. Even a hard, scary trip down memory lane. I want to be whole.
‘ Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.’ Psalms 23:4
Back in the spring, I began to grow restless and sad. I wasn’t happy being confined to one place. I wasn’t happy with my work. The thought of spending one more summer in the blazing furnace that is Phoenix was wearing me down. I decided to get back into travel nursing.
I found a contract in Georgia, packed up my cats and my life, threw it all in the car, and drove east. I left behind my apartment, friends, and favorite roommate/son#1. I headed for rainy weather, a new OR, and more time with my favorite son#2, expecting to spend lots of quality time with him because we’d be closer in proximity. The dreamer in me expected a seamless, happy, exciting transition for all of us.
The reality was deafening silence in the new apartment apart from my favorite roommate/son#1. Starting over at work. Being unknown. Having more time with son#2, but not as much time as I wanted because he was still 6 hours away AND newly engaged. Being more separate from my people than I had been in years. Feeling torn between pursuing my dream of backpacking the Appalachian Trail and spending time with all the people who were now even farther away from me.
I did this. I did this to myself. On purpose. Because I thought it would be good. Somewhere deep inside I still think it could be good. But it’s been hard. I’ve been sadder than I have been in years. I’ve been angrier too. Because things aren’t going the way I expected them to go.
And so unconditional. Unconditional acceptance of the choices I’ve made and the ones to make in the future. Unconditional surrender of my expectations to allow God to mold me into the person he created me to be. Unconditional forgiveness for myself and others because we’re all just trying to do the best we can down here.
I don’t know all the things coming my way this year, but I do know the One who knows and I hope I really will learn to be unconditional with my whole life.
May the Lord direct your hearts to the love of God and to the steadfastness of Christ. 2 Thessalonians 3:5
Happy New Year! I’m super excited for 2019. First of all, I love odd numbers. Since this is an odd year, I’m hoping it’ll be a good one. Secondly, I’m going to take up the one word ‘challenge’ again. I barely wrote about my word in 2017, I wasn’t in the mood to write. I didn’t even pick a word for 2018, again, I wasn’t in the mood to write. But hitting the end of 2018 has me feeling like I’m in the mood to write again, so why not choose a word, a theme on which to center the blog?
What word have I chosen? I’m so glad you asked. This year, I’m choosing the word UNCONDITIONAL. Why? I’ve been struggling to live and let live, to accept life as it is, to let go of expectations of myself and others. Because of this struggle, I’ve been allowing self-pity to rear its ugly head. I’m not okay with this. I’m not okay with this because it shows a lack of faith that I haven’t experienced in some time. I’m choosing this word because I sense the Lord leading me to take this journey with him. God is all about sanctification, molding, shaping, changing me into the person he had in mind from the beginning. And I say yes! Here I am!
So yeah, UNCONDITIONAL. It’s my word for 2019.
What about you? Have you chosen a word for the year? Leave me a comment. 🙂