Today I had a moment. A "God, are you sure it's okay for me to be really honest with you?" moment. I came back to visit the place I have known as home for almost the last 10 years of my life - and I feel so happy. I was driving down the road to my favorite coffee house, driving down a path on which I have done some of my best thinking, and I got choked up with how much I miss this place. How much I miss me. And I feel guilty. I am married to who I believe to be the best husband on the planet, and I love him in a way that takes my breath away. I enjoy his love even more. I know in my heart that he is home for me. That I would go anywhere with him and we would go anywhere together for the sake of God's kingdom. But it is so hard to feel like the real me, the joyful me, when it feels like the girl with the dreams and passion, vision and motivation remains here, in a different city. When I drove here yesterday it was like I could breathe deep and feel safe in the place where God grew me so much.
So as tears welled up in my eyes I silently said to God, "I miss this so much. You know how much I wish I lived here, right?" And it felt like such a peaceful reply came from Him saying, "Yes. I know you love it here - and that's okay. I know the plans I have for you." Then I thought I'd take it a step further. "Could I be so bold to ask you if we can move back here?" And I felt him say, "Trust me. I love you. I hurt with you. I know how you feel, what you desire, and how much you want to serve me. I know you love your husband and are grateful for your life with him. Trust me."
And I have peace. Not that I am done crying while I am here, but because for the first time in a long time, I felt safe being honest with God - and He was right there waiting, so faithful in His reply. It is so difficult for me to admit, but in light of being given such a beautiful gift as the one of marriage to the man of my dreams, I have felt so terrible for missing what I once knew. I have felt guilty for feeling like a fish out of water when it comes to marriage, for wanting my old life, for missing my brother and my friends so much, for sitting in Bible Study thinking, "I feel far from a Proverbs 31 woman." I feel horrible for being sad while my husband would do anything to love me in a way to make me feel safe and that brings me joy.
I have been weighed down by the burden of analyzing each of my decisions in the past year. Did I make the perfect choices at the perfect times? Did I fail at following God to the best of my ability? And you know what I realize? God is not interested in my perfection. He wants me. All of me - the ugly, the beautiful, the crazy, the peaceful, the weak, the strong, the sorrowful, and the joyful. He is waiting. He has so much more than I can possibly see in front of me...as evidenced by this beautiful, amazing man I waited so long for and am so privileged to call my husband. Yet He continues to have to teach me this, over and over.
Have you ever had an out-of-the-blue, unexpected whoosh of excitement in your heart in the midst of a really difficult time that feels like unexplainable hope? Those moments when your heart is randomly light, your mind takes a break from figuring out life, and you feel excitement about the unknown?
Last night I went to dinner with two of my beautiful friends, both of whom walk their own journey and experience their own unique pain, and we talked about these very moments. Those that I have termed, "adrenaline rush of trust" moments. When, for a brief instant we let go of all that hurts, all that is hard to figure out, all the ways we feel we have failed or others have failed us....and we surrender. Often these moments are brief because they scare us; we feel out of control, afraid of the unknown, afraid to trust anyone else with the only life we have, and we take hold with a painfully unnecessary grip once again. Yet God remains, seated on His beautiful throne of grace, with a loving, gentle smile on His face, arms open wide, waiting.
You know what's crazy? It is not the fact that we can be joyful when we want what we don't have, when we have what we don't want, when we are stumbling through life feeling like a complete mess. What is crazy is that we often feel like we are waiting on God when He is actually waiting on us. Those brief moments of realizing this truth...those are the moments I call crazy joy. When it's not about what we can do or should do or should have done. It's not even about feeling happy. It's when we realize God is the same yesterday, today, and tomorrow, and He loves us more than we could imagine, for no reason other than we are His. He is waiting for our tears. He longs for our honesty. And He can handle it. Give it to Him. He will do more than you could ever ask or imagine. He will give you a joy that is not from the world but is only from Him. A crazy joy.