I am not totally sure why I pick the title March Madness, this post is not about basketball… even if I do live near University of Dayton a big basketball college of sorts.
So what do I mean by March madness… nothing and everything. March has been a moment of greatest highs and lowest of lows in my past.
It has been one interesting first week of this month which brings on mixed emotions. Today is no different. I have what I refer to as a split shift/night shift hangover aka. a little sleep deprived, I worked 11a.m.-6p.m. yesterday and due to an ill call, went home and went back to work midnight to 7 a.m.. Add to that dinner with the ‘rents (my wonderful Ma and Pa who allow me to “mooch” off of them occasionally for dinner) at Chappy’s were I challenged the waiter with making a vegan saute of all available veggies, in the kitchen… and I am one reflective veg head! Oh and let us not forget my groovy car stereo with the “mood” lighting that had me rocking out on the drive home…
I have had this car for a little while and tonight I was in one of those modes of listening to my music loud, singing proud and enjoying the sunset…. I could have been sixteen again. So much has happened since then, and as much as I liked my car at sixteen, this stereo kicks booty compared to the much revered ’69 Cutlass I drove, and well I have “grown up” some.
Seriously though today had me on this reflective path. As I tried to sleep a little after working night shift, I first got a text from Momma. She was just checking in and I thought how strange that now my Momma text me, and how comforting it is that she has always been there for me. Then I get a text from my sister asking for prayer as Livvy and her youth group fast for famine. My little sister who has five kiddo’s, her oldest Will who comes home this week for spring break. Will who at 15 we traveled a little of Alaska together during this time of year and were blessed with seeing the Auroria Borealis so many nights… when did all this growing and changing happen? Another text and Hope is sending a plea for prayer of a soldier friend in Afganistan who has been in a horrific accident, leaving a wife wondering what will be.
Sleep was restless and I decided it was time to shake off the cobwebs with a run. The sun was bright, the wind brisk and the air cool, perfect running conditions to match my mood a mix of all things both good and challenging. As I ran I lifted up in prayer those text that had so gently interrupted my sleep. I couldn’t help but think of what it means when we pray “Let your will be done.” Do I really mean that? As I pray for the soldier in Afganistan, my will would be that he would be healed, he would be whole with both legs to walk home and embrace his wife… God’s will has been his legs are gone, and possibly his life, that maybe God’s way, will of making him “whole” is to take him home, what if that is God’s will? How will his family and friends deal with that?
What of the children that the teens fast for? Will it be God’s will to feed the masses, or will more starve? What about their need for the truth, the spiritual food, will it be God’s will that these children be saved for eternity, that is my hope, my will, my prayer!
This week one of my best friends from college celebrates a milestone birthday, I am not far behind. So I can’t help but be somewhat reflective as I think of what has happened in the years between those days, those dreams and were I am now. Those words echo in my sleep deprived “runners head” “not my will yours”… oh Lord all the years I tried my will! All those years full of tears, triumphs, failures, tragedy, stubbornness, trauma, comfort, fear, chasing other lovers, I wanted a husband, my will! …. as you Lord were a constant jealous love who chased me, even in my ugliest moments… “not my will, but yours.” You wouldn’t let go, you wouldn’t let me “settle for second.” You loved me like no other, you never left me, I left you, I thought I could have you and….?
Somewhere along the way, in the darkest moment I gave up, if only for that moment and truly meant “not my will, but yours.” It has been a long road, it is a daily giving up, as I was reminded of today on my run. I am so grateful for the times that I have said “not my will, but yours,” and trusted.
I am learning that God truly does have my best in His hands. At sixteen, driving county roads with the windows down, hair blowing in the breeze I dreamed of a picket fence and making eggs and bacon in the morning for my husband who would adore me, my kids who would be great. Now living out my “golden year,” as it may be referred to, there is no picket fence, husband. I wouldn’t serve bacon and eggs to my worst enemy, 🙂 and children are others I enjoy and love being known as crazy Aunt Debbie! Some would ask if I feel I have missed out? I honestly can say no. My life has been full; full of missteps, mistakes, falling down, getting up, loving, loosing, growing and giving up!
The best thing I ever did was to say: “not my will, but yours…” to realize that this life I have been given is not my own, it was bought and paid for on a cross… and the man who died and rose again from that cross loves me!! Loves me like no other has, or ever will! This man knows everything about me and has never left me like other loves.
I wouldn’t trade a moment of the years I have lived if it meant I would be different. I wouldn’t go back… I only look forward. I run the race…. Hebrews 12:1 reads this way… “1 Therefore, since we have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us also lay aside every encumbrance and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, 2 fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.”
So my sleep deprived veg head self is counting my blessings. The fact that I am content, no overjoyed with having the greatest love to rest in is beyond description… I will continue to pray the hard prayer of “not my will, but yours,” and ask for the faith, courage, patience and strength to live it out! How about you?