Faith Lessons in the Dark

As part of the launch of her new book Night Driving: A Story of Faith in the Dark, Addie Zierman is hosting a synchroblog sharing stories of faith in the dark. I haven’t read the book yet, but I have a sense that much of it will resonate with me. This is my contribution to the collection of stories, and you can read others here.

In life and in faith, there are different kinds of darkness.

Some is sudden, all-consuming, like the flicking of a switch.

Some is gradual, gentle, like the fading from day to night.

Nearly all darkness is confusing.

When what was once so easy to see becomes murky and unclear, it can be tempting to become angry at the dark.

 

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Photo Credit: Flickr User heyFilbert, Creative Commons

For a longer time than I can keep track of anymore, and a much longer time than I would have expected, I have been in the shadows of faith. Not always, not completely, but often. I’ve never been able to pin its coming on any one specific instance or circumstance, it just arrived, all on its own, uninvited. But sometimes even uninvited house guests have their merit, and while I am not yet to the point of being able to say I’m truly thankful for the darkness, I am beginning to develop a hesitant appreciation for it.

It turns out there are more people in the dark than I thought, and being there myself has made me seek them out in ways I wouldn’t have before. Having questions, not feeling like God is there, struggling to understand why God does and doesn’t behave in certain ways–there are, and have been, many people who have been in the same place of wondering and wandering. Though I grew up in a Christianity-saturated environment, these weren’t topics that were wrestled with often. Since I didn’t struggle with them in any sort of significant way for most of my life, the absence of those conversations didn’t bother me. Darkness feels a little less lonely when there are others in it though. It’s not that I would wish darkness on other people, but if they’re in it too, it’s better to know we are not alone. Blogs and books, like Addie’s and many others, are a gift for the darkness.

As valuable as reading about people in the darkness can be, experiencing it is something different. Defining the darkness of faith is a tricky business, because it looks so different for different people. For me, the darkness has made me realize much of faith is not black or white but myriad shades of grey; it’s made me more okay with uncertainty, and helped me make room for other’s uncertainty as well. I still believe most of what I used to believe, but I cling a little more loosely to some of it. There has been a lot of value in being forced to reexamine how I approach my faith. Not “feeling” God has frustrated me, but has also made me realize that, like all relationships, there will be seasons in my relationship with God. During some I’ll feel close to him, during some I’ll feel farther away, and neither of those are objectively a result of me “succeeding” or “failing” at doing faith well. For all the good that reading the Bible and praying are, they are not magic ingredients to a faith I’ll always feel. True faith doesn’t work like that.

Perhaps the most valuable thing of all that I’ve found in the darkness is that God is enough. Even when it doesn’t feel that way, even when I’m sick of trying so hard and feeling nothing, God is still enough. Enoughness is who he is, part of his very essence and being. Always and ever, he is enough.

I forget that daily. Almost always, really. I want more of him and from him than I may ever get, but it’s because I already have enough of him for all that I need. Even in the dark.

Til next time…

~Brianna!~

p.s. What faith lessons have you learned in the darkness?

Doubt is Not a Bad Guy

The other day as I was driving, I happened to be listening to a Christian radio station. I have a hard time not nitpicking Christian music as it is, and this lyric jumped out at me:

I don’t wanna ever doubt You

It’s a noble goal in theory, but in the face of real life, real problems, real heartache, it immediately struck me as unrealistic.

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Photo Credit: Flickr User Barbara Walsh Photography, Creative Commons

No matter how well we strive to follow Jesus, there will always be moments of doubt–maybe not doubting his existence, though that’s certainly a possibility–but doubting his plan, doubting his goodness, doubting how things play out in our lives and in the lives of those around us. I don’t think we’ll ever fully escape those kinds of doubts.

And, I’d argue, that’s not a bad thing. There are times when we learn more through doubting than we would in any other way.

Wrestling with doubt can be holy.

It can also be treacherous, which is why it gets portrayed as the Bad Guy. If doubt causes us to only seek out people and places that tell us our doubts are all valid and everything we’ve believed is a lie, it’s problematic. That kind of doubt is only enforcing what we may already want to hear. Perhaps even more dangerous is the kind of doubt that does nothing at all. Instead of doing the slow, hard work of confronting doubt and examining it from every angle, ignoring it moves us nowhere. It’s a grand stalemate, a lazy kind of doubt that’s afraid of finding any sort of answer, because those answers may be uncomfortable.

But doubt can also spur us to action. It can force us to reexamine, rethink, and possibly even renew what be believe. There is value in exploring how other people have dealt with similar doubts, no matter what conclusion they reached–there is good to be learned in seeing their process, in seeing echoes of ourselves reflected in other people’s stories. It doesn’t mean that our process or destination will end up looking the same, but there can be comfort in the commonalities.

 
This may not be a popular opinion in Christianity. There are no guarantees when we set out on a journey to examine our doubt, because doubt is messy and complicated and painful. But saying it’s always bad only makes us afraid of something any Christ-follower will encounter at points along the path. Presenting doubt as the objective Bad Guy makes people hesitant to talk about it, and can leave people feeling as though they are the only ones who have ever struggled with it. When doubt is presented as a likely part of the faith journey instead of an aberration, we create space to talk about it honestly in community, instead of struggling through alone. Talking about it doesn’t mean we, or our faith, will come out unscathed–there is far too much mystery in God and faith and grace for me to understand how two people’s seemingly similar paths can have such dramatically different outcomes–but it may mean we won’t come out alone.

Til next time…

~Brianna!~

p.s. Have you encountered good in doubt?

Faith Beyond Feeling

“If God feels distant, guess who moved?”

It’s a saying that gets tossed around in Christian circles sometimes, and honestly, I’ve likely even said it myself at some point. Lately though, I’ve been pondering it, and am beginning to see it for what it is: A lie.

If Christianity made total sense, then yes, reading the Bible, praying, going to church, being in a Bible study, and volunteering would likely guarantee we always felt God’s presence.

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Photo Credit: Flickr User ZoeLouisePhotography, Creative Commons

Except Christianity often doesn’t make sense. It’s not a religion of checklists (though it may be treated and presented that way at times), making sure we tick all the right boxes so God hands us our Perfect Little Lives. There’s much more mystery and ambiguity to it than that. I love God, I want to know him better and follow him well, so I try to read the Bible and pray and serve him in various ways, but a lot of the time I’m pretty bad at all of those. And then he seems to go missing for a while, and the ways I used to feel him, though they weren’t big and flashy, don’t work like they used to. Even though I’m still doing “all the right things.”

Which means, I’ve been told, that I’m the one who moved…like I somehow messed up, and God is punishing me by not letting me feel his presence anymore.

I don’t think it really works like that though.

As someone who interprets the world largely based on feelings, I want to feel God’s presence as a real, tangible work in my life. He works that way sometimes, but not always. So I don’t think I’ve moved and God is holding back from me because of that; I think I’m finding my way to a faith beyond feeling.

A kind of faith that trusts God is there, that he is who he says he is, that he will do what he has said he will, even when my present reality may not bear the witness of it like I had hoped it would. It’s a kind of faith that knows there are seasons, some where God makes himself known through feelings, and some where God makes himself known in the complicated, uncomfortable way of simply being held by his grace.

There’s an easiness of “If God feels distant, guess who moved?” which is probably why we say it. We are sometimes, perhaps even often, the ones who wander away from God. I don’t think God ever really wanders away from us though–that seems to go against his very nature, of one who is love, who is always there fighting for us. He does seem to use unorthodox methods for getting our attention, so maybe it’s more that he lets it seem like there’s distance.

I’m not sure how this all works. I’ll never claim to understand the complexities of God.

But I don’t think we need to feel like we’ve failed when God seems distant. Do we always have to put the blame somewhere, either on ourselves or on God? Or can distance sometimes just be…a thing that feels true right now, even if we ultimately know that it’s not? And maybe it’s a way to a different kind of faith, a faith beyond the need to always feel it.

Til next time…

~Brianna!~

p.s. How do you make sense of it when God feels distant?

One Word 365

The only time a New Year’s resolution has ever “stuck” for me is the year I resolved to write every single day–that one has turned into a habit I’ve continued for over five years. Most of the time, resolutions seem too overwhelming to commit to. There are certainly changes I could stand to make in my life, but trying to figure out this Adulthood and Personhood thing feels like quite enough most of the time.

This year though, my church did a One Word event for women. I was familiar with the concept of one word, as I’ve seen many tweets and blog posts about it over the past few years, and the concept intrigued me. As explained by the #OneWord365 website, the idea is thus:

Choose just one word.

One word you can focus on every day, all year long… One word that sums up who you want to be or how you want to live.

It will take intentionality and commitment, but if you let it, your one word will shape not only your year, but also you. It will become the compass that directs your decisions and guides your steps.

Discover the big impact one word can make.

The complication then becomes, of course, choosing a word.

When I asked People of the Internet for guidance on how to select my word, one of the first responses was, “Just pray about it.” In theory, that sounds great–except my difficulty with prayer is well documented. I did pray about it, and heard…nothing. God doesn’t work like that for me, at least not right now and not in my recent history.

So after a while I just picked two words that felt fitting, and over time, neither felt right anymore–except a new word came to mind, bringing in aspects of each of the original ones.

 

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All at once a command, a reminder, and a promise. It feels gentle though, and kind. Something I can manage. I can’t even think of it with proper capitalization, because there’s something about that capital “D” that feels too harsh for it. So dwell.

That’s my word.

Initially, I took it mostly for myself–a reminder to dwell, to simply sit, be with, and enjoy God–but it’s actually a two-sided reminder. Over and over again in the Bible, God is dwelling with his people. They remain in him, and he remains with them.

Lord, you have been our dwelling place throughout all generations. ~Psalm 90:1

Spending time with God is not something I have excelled of lately, but this year, I hope to relearn what it means to dwell with God. Whether I “succeed” at doing so or not, I can be continually reminded that God is already with me. I have not, and can not, drive him away with how much or little time I spend with him. His affection for me is not conditional on me dwelling with him, for he already dwells in me. And oh, do I need that reminder.

As much as dwell is a spiritual reminder, there’s also a physical component to the word. For several years, housing has been a complicated issue for me, and it continues to be so. While I hope 2016 will hold a longer-term solution to that, the reality is that I don’t know. In the meantime though, I can seek to be content and grateful for wherever I am physically dwelling, even if it’s not what I would term to be ideal. There is action in the word dwell too though, so my contentment doesn’t have to be the idle kind–I can, and will be, actively working towards something new.

 

Having never picked One Word before, I have no idea what to expect. It’s a little exciting and a little scary. Maybe this One Word won’t seem to come into play much at all, or maybe it will suddenly pop up everywhere and color everything.

 

dwell

 

Til next time…

~Brianna!~

p.s. Did you pick a word for 2016? Will you tell me about it?

Waiting on the New Thing

At the beginning of the year, I wrote about Looking for the New Things. Isaiah 43:18-19 seemed to be everywhere I looked, which wasn’t too surprising, as it’s often a favorite at the dawn of a new year. It stuck around for a couple of months, and then I stopped noticing it, but didn’t forget about it. When life went awry, which it has, is, and will continue to at various points, I went back there. I asked a talented friend to make me a nicer piece of wall art to hang in my room, and even bought a frame to make it look official.

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I will make a way in the wilderness
    and rivers in the desert.

I clung to that verse like it was a life raft. In ways, I suppose it was. Is.

And I waited, and prayed, and waited. And more of the same, likely with some impatient feet-stomping to show God I meant business this time.

So much waiting. Many stories of faith could be summarized with that one word.

Waiting.

In the past month or so, Isaiah 43:18-19 again seems to be everywhere I look–so much so that when I read a book or blog and the writer said, “There’s a verse that means so much to me…” I’ve started expecting it to be Isaiah 43:18-19. And lately, it usually has been.

It’s made me roll my eyes and mutter under my breath “You’ve got to be kidding me.”

But it’s also forced me to notice it.

For all the waiting I have done and am doing, I don’t feel like I’ve noticed any “new things” in the way I thought I would. There’s been nothing big enough that demands me to see it and exclaim, “Yes! That’s it! The new way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert!”

A way (or a path, I imagine) or a river seems like it should be pretty noticeable. But I haven’t gotten those.

Maybe, though, the reappearance of this is A thing. Not the thing, or a major thing, but A thing.

Over and over, being I’m reminded to have hope, and to see.

As I wrote earlier this year:

I love the boldness of BeholdIt is booming, rich, inviting–see here, look, pay attention. You don’t want to miss this.

I don’t know what that “new thing” might look like, though I certainly have my list of suggestions for God–but my biggest hope is that I have the eyes to recognize the newness even if it doesn’t look like I thought it would.

This particular year is much closer to its end than its start, but this promise, this hope of new things doesn’t end simply because the year does. Sometimes the waiting time is much longer than we’d like to be, but we still have reason to hope.

Til next time…

~Brianna!~

p.s. Have you seen God doing new things? Or are you still waiting?

The Freedom of Uncertainty

As part of the launch of her new book Out of Sorts, Sarah Bessey is hosting a synchroblog exploring the idea, “I used to think ______ but now I think ______.” This is my contribution to that project. You can read other entries here.

Usually, when things fall apart, there is a reason. An ugly fight, a giant shove, a shocking secret.

And sometimes, things fall apart for no foreseeable reason at all.

It’s just what they do.

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Sarah Bessey’s new book Out of Sorts starts out with these words that so perfectly sum up my story of faith:

“Once upon a time, you had it all beautifully sorted out.

Then you didn’t.”

For most of my life, I thought I had faith pretty figured out. Having been raised in a Christian home and sent to Christian schools, faith was my first language. It was the way I was taught interpret the world, which, while in many ways a blessing, carries baggage of its own kind. Christianity was laced through everything I did. There was, and still is, something in it that rings inherently true to me, a knowing I can never fully describe.

That, at least, hasn’t changed.

Many other things have, though.

There was no inciting incident, no major tragedy or triumph to set me off on a path of wandering. It just…happened. And one day I realized, or perhaps finally admitted, that I had moved and no longer knew exactly where I was.

I’ve taken up residence here, though I still don’t exactly where this “here” is. It has a lot less certainty than wherever I was before. But I’ve come to a restless kind of peace with the uncertainty.

For as much as it is uncertain, it is also freeing.

Because I used to think there were far more wrong ways to follow Jesus than there were right ways, and now I’m not sure I, or any other humans, have quite so much say in that kind of “wrong or right” as we often think we do.

I used to think doubt meant I was failing at my faith, and now I think doubt can be good. It’s a sign I have something at stake, something worth wrestling with, something I’m not ready to give up even when there is more that doesn’t make sense to me than does make sense. Doubt means I’m still thinking, still engaging.

I used to think reading the Bible and praying and going to church earned me credit of some kind. They’re important for spiritual growth and community, certainly, but salvation doesn’t depend upon them. My faith does not cease to exist when I fail to read my Bible or pray consistently.

I used to think God likes me more than he likes other people, and I’m still working on losing this idea. He doesn’t like me more because I go to church or because I don’t do certain things. Following Jesus is not a race—there are no winners and losers, no competition to beat. Grace is wide, and long, and deep.

I used to think feeling distant from God was all my fault and was always a result of major sin or failing. It might be sometimes, but now I think there are seasons of faith, and they change sometimes regardless of what we do or don’t do. True faith exists beyond feelings and in spite of a lack of them.

I still believe in right and wrong, that there are ways we are to follow Jesus and ways we think look like following him but are actually the opposite.  The edges of what I hold to be absolutely true have blurred though, more so already than I ever thought they would, and I’m learning to hold those absolutes less tightly. “Different” is not as scary as I once thought it to be. There is deep value in exploring ideas we disagree with, even if ultimately we end up in the exact same place we started. At least we stretched ourselves, learned to see things from different angles. As Sarah puts it, “If our theology doesn’t shift and change over our lifetimes, then I have to wonder if we’re paying attention.”

Because life, I am certain, has more questions in store for me yet. It’s both a wonder and a terror that I will never be truly done sorting through faith, will never truly arrive. So these words, from the oh-so-beautiful Benediction of Out of Sorts, are one ones I will cling to, return to, and take as my own.

“I pray you would be an explorer, you would recover delight and wonder and curiosity about your faith, about God, and about the story with which you continue to wrestle.”

I’m never going to have this faith thing all figured out. But I will keep showing up, because I believe that God is bigger than my wrestling and wandering.

Til next time…

~Brianna!~

p.s. How has your understanding of faith changed?

A Change of Faith

Some people are thrown into Strange Spaces of faith because of a major crisis, perhaps an illness or a death, or maybe some large question that has barged into their life and refuses to go away. These, I understand, can absolutely see why they send people into a tailspin of doubt and anger and questioning.

I have no excuse for my entry into a strange faith space, no major tragedy or question begging to be answered before I can move on to somewhere new.

Whatever the reason though, I’m beginning to think it’s needed. Socrates is credited with saying, “The unexamined life is not worth living.” I wonder too if the unexamined faith is not worth having.

Photo Credit: Flickr User Ella's Dad, Creative Commons

Photo Credit: Flickr User Ella’s Dad, Creative Commons

It feels as though I have been taking my faith and examining it from every angle, holding it up to see each side and nuance. Not so that I can ultimately set it down and walk away, but so that I can come to know and embrace it more fully.

There are big questions to ask, of why I hold this faith and what it means for how I order my everyday life, how I approach the world and all the complexities that come with simply being human. There are questions of how I read the Bible, what place I give it in my life, what Christian community means and what it looks like on a very practical level. How do I make decisions, big or small? How do I treat people, and is it reflective of what I believe about the love of Christ? How do I answer the big questions of why we exist and what the purpose of life is?

So many people have attempted to answer these questions and will continue to do so, and I can’t help thinking that no one has or ever will get all of these faith matters completely right. Which is a jarring thought, given what I had subconsciously believed for much of my faith life. Because what if there is no one perfectly correct way to follow Jesus?

I’m becoming more okay with that thought, what it looks like for other people’s lives as well as my own. There are core pieces I haven’t given up, nor do I think I’ll ever. But even those must be revisited, reexamined, if only to reaffirm where I stand. So much though, more than I would once have ever thought, I’m learning to hold loosely. Different really can be okay.

A reshaping of faith is not an entirely enjoyable process. It can be uncomfortable, convicting, and confusing.  Examining often comes with reshaping, discovering pieces may not fit at all anymore or may fit in a different way. Yet, despite my issues with prayer and the Bible, my questions of the practicalities of how to follow Jesus (and what does that phrase even really mean?), I have never seriously considered completely walking away from my faith.

For all the confusion it sometimes causes me, there is something to this Christian story, something to this God and this Jesus, that keep pulling me back. To grace, to mercy, to forgiveness, to a love so big I will never understand even a fraction of it.

There is no other story I would rather wrestle with.

Til next time…

~Brianna!~

The Only Way Out is Through

For some time now, I’ve been in a Strange Space when it comes to God and faith.

It’s not the type of thing you notice the day it begins, that you take note of in a journal. “Today, I entered a weird wilderness-type space in terms of my relationship with God.”

Photo Credit: Flickr User mypubliclands, Creative Commons

Photo Credit: Flickr User mypubliclands, Creative Commons

It just kind of…happens. And then, one day, you realize you’ve been there for A While.

Throughout this While in this strange space, I’ve been on alert for other people who have been in similar situations, trying to figure out how they got out. A sense of wandering, of wilderness, of disconnect from God and faith does not seem to be uncommon–I’ve read books, blogs, and stories of people who seem to have felt the way I do.

The one thing all of those lacked, though, is an easy answer.
I’m beginning to wonder if this wandering lostness I feel is a case of the children’s rhyme “Going on a Bear Hunt.”

Going on a bear hunt, gonna catch a big one, here’s the river…can’t go over it, can’t go under it, have to go through it.

Of those options, “through” is not the one I’d pick.

And yet, it seems to be the answer: There are no easy answers. Reading the Bible, praying, going to church, being involved in Christian community–these are all good, but they’re not a magic fix to where I am. If they were, I wouldn’t still be here. Instead, the way out is to move through, not to pretend I don’t get frustrated with God for his seeming silence and the way that reading the Bible and praying don’t “work” like they’re supposed to. No. I have to move through the wondering, the questions, the frustrations.

As I do, it’s not with the guarantee that the answers actually exist in the form I’d like them to. Like I can’t pinpoint a day I entered the “wilderness of faith,”  I don’t think I’ll be able to pinpoint the day I’ll move out of it–if I move out of it. Because as much as I believe there are seasons of faith just like there are seasons in the weather, God never promised to be who I want him to be and to show up when and where I want him to and to fit my picture of what he’s supposed to be.

He’s God. That’s kind of the point.

So maybe my “out” will only ever be like more “through.” Maybe I’ll continue to learn what faith looks like when it doesn’t look like what you thought you knew.

Til next time…

~Brianna!~

p.s. How have you carried on through wilderness times of faith?

Jesus Loves Me, But Do I Love Him?

How do you love a guy you don’t really know?

I’ve read the Bible, I’ve studied theology, I’ve facilitated Bible studies, I’ve listened to sermons, and I’ve read books. Yet do all of those amount to really “knowing” Jesus?

More than that, do they amount to loving him?

Photo Credit: Flickr User rachel_titiriga, Creative Commons

Photo Credit: Flickr User rachel_titiriga, Creative Commons

The intangibility of the Christian faith is something I have often struggled with. I want to see my prayers, I want to hug a tangible person-Jesus, I want to hear his replies to me.

But that’s just now how this Christianity thing works.

So I find myself eating instead of praying, writing down my prayers in hopes that those ones will maybe stick, eating cake while reading the Bible in an attempt to remember its goodness–because all of those have a physicality, an immediacy about them.

“It’s not a religion, it’s a relationship,” is a phrase that’s sometimes used to describe Christianity. Except all of my other relationships are with people I at least sometimes see in real life, or at the very least communicate with here and there.

Not that love is supposed to be immediate, or can be seen with the human eye. But the reality is, I say I love Jesus, but I don’t really know what that means. It sounds good. It’s what good little Christians are supposed to say.

Yet how do you love someone you don’t sit down across the table from and eat dinner with, or text to see if he wants to hang out on Friday night? Jesus loves me, but do I really and truly love him?

In my relationships with friends and family, I (somewhat, and very imperfectly) know how to love them. Gary Chapman’s book The 5 Love Languages outlines 5 different ways people give and receive love–words of affirmation, acts of service, receiving gifts, quality time, and physical touch–which I’ve found to be helpful when I think about how to care about my friends and family.

Jesus does not have a love language we can discern, though. Or maybe he has all of them, since he is love. Whichever it is, all of the ways of expressing love have a limit when it comes to how they apply to my relationship with Jesus. I can tell him he’s great, I can do things that please him, I can give him gifts (sort of?), I can spend time with him (again, sort of, but since we can’t hang out on a Friday night, this is a tricky one for me to figure out), and…well, if someone figures out how to give Jesus hugs, please let me know.

So what does a love with an invisible person, a deity, look like? In concrete, tangible ways? 

What do you think? (Really, I want to know.)

Til next time…

~Brianna!~

Reading the Bible Doesn’t Work

This Lent, I’ve been doing a reading plan through Bible Gateway that will take me through all of the New Testament by Easter. So far I’ve been quite good about it—there have been a couple days when I missed all or some of the chapters, but I’ve always gone back and caught up.

I’m over halfway through the plan now, and yet, I don’t really feel like it’s doing anything.

.

.

Sure, sometimes when I read it I’m not fully engaged and am reading the words merely to say I’ve read them, but there are times when I really am paying close attention. In an effort to keep me from being able to skim so easily, I’m reading The Message, instead of my usual NIV or ESV. There have been moments when certain verses or phrases stick out to me a bit, but certainly no lightning bolts. Not that I necessarily expected one, but it sure would be nice.

I’ve tried not reading the Bible at all for a while, I’ve tried eating something I enjoy while I read it as a reminder of its goodness, and now I’m trying a fairly regimented approach to reading it.

And none of it seems to be “working.” Whatever “working” exactly means when it’s applied to Bible reading.

If it’s supposed to break God’s seeming silence, it’s certainly not working the way I’d like it to.

I can’t pinpoint when I wandered into this weird space of not really knowing what’s going on with God. It’s been some time now though, and while I’ve seen glimpses of him here and there, mostly I have not.

God is there—I’m as certain of it as I think I can be (which is to say, not 100%, but enough to continue believing and living like it)—but it kind of seems like he’s not.

In the midst of all of it, I’m continuing to look for the lessons here. And I’m coming to realize it’s not in my right to DEMAND more of God. It’s what I want to do, and oh how I wish he’d give in to my foot-stomping wails for him to appear, but that is not how he operates. Or at least, it’s not how he has to.

He doesn’t have to do anything.

I’ve realized I’m still not tempted to walk away from this faith thing—that’s never really been a serious consideration in my mind, even here, in this strange space. I think this is me learning that inherent in the idea of “faith” is the idea keeping after it, whether or not the feelings are there.  

So where does that leave me?

If the ways I’ve seen and felt God at work in my life turn out to be all I ever get, for the rest of my breathing days, is it enough?

I can’t say with absolutely certainty, because life may be long and messy and painful, but I think it might be.

If reading the Bible never starts feeling like it’s “working” again, if my problems with prayer persist, if God never shows up in a pillar of fire, is it enough?

I hope so.

Til next time…

~Brianna!~

p.s. What do you do when reading the Bible doesn’t seem to be “working?”