I posted a picture of my son and I to Instagram today. Today is the fourth day of Sukkot, a Jewish celebration of joy and all that we’re blessed to have, so I volunteered at his school to walk him to Temple and celebrate.
I stopped at the grocery store on the way out, getting ready to drive to the courthouse to get some documents our lender needed. The anxiety was creeping up into my stomach, through my lungs, and up/out my shoulders. In fact, the past few months in general have felt like at any moment I could lapse into panic attack. And no one wants to do that so close to the eggs.
When I posted the picture, I wrote about how blessed I feel. How God blessed me with a life wherein I can still visit my son in school on a Wednesday morning.
But that’s not what autocorrect chose for my caption. No, autocorrect chose this:
God messed me with a life that allows me to volunteer in my son’s classroom on a Wednesday morning.
And I laughed. Out loud. Alone. Because it’s true. God messed me with this life. Not messed WITH me. He MESSED me:
I asked Him for a life partner and He gave me one in the middle of my divorce. I asked Him for strength and I thought He gave me The 21 Day Fix, but instead He gave me a broken leg and the fortitude to grow my own strength from that. I asked Him for a place Abraham and I could live without sharing a room, and Bear asked me to marry him. I asked Him for a house, and God created this big old mess, at the end of which will hopefully be a a place we get to share as a family. Every purchase, every credit mistake, every issue we have within our financial past and present has risen to the surface for the scrutinization of people who don’t know us (because if they knew us, there would be no question). It is a MESS.
God messed us.
Because sometimes God’s message is in our mistakes.
Sometimes he leads us in the right direction by pointing out our mistakes; sometimes with a painful, glaring spotlight so that we have no choice but to accept our own shortcomings and learn from them. Because if God had needed Bear and I to be financial planners in order to fulfill our destinies, he wouldn’t have left that out of our DNA…
God teaches WITH THE MESS and IN THE MESS. He’s not just there when we need something and he’s not just there when he’s given us something we aaaaaaaaalways wanted. He’s there with the mess, in the mess, sometimes CREATING the mess so that we can learn something we never would have chosen to learn. I would NEVER have chosen to learn how the credit system works, how lenders work, and what it’s like to buy a home. I would have rented forever. The day our plumbing broke in our rental house, I heard SO loudly and SO clearly that we were supposed to buy something even thought I reallyreallyreallyreally didn’t want to. And while some magic has happened as I surrendered to that inner knowing, it’s not all beans and butterflies. I’m still nearing panic attack DANGEROUSLY close to the eggs while I think about how little control over everyone who gets to decide how this whole house thing goes down I have.
No. I’m not handling it all well. But I’m writing and I’m praying and I’m listening to Pastor Furtick (and Bishop Jakes and Pastor Gray and Pastor Stanley, Lord help me…) and singing little motivational songs to myself and doing my DAMNEDEST to trust that we will be blessed with a big, MESSY move my Christmas.
He messed me. He pressed me. He stressed me. He distressed me. He NEVERTHELESSed me! And still, I know, He blessed me.