Friday, March 05, 2010

Finding God in the Space Between Pain and Resolution

I don't have much time to write, but wanted to capture this concept that is pressing on my soul....

So often, we seek God for relief, to have challenges, pain, cognitive dissonance -- whatever is causing us grief -- taken away, solved, fixed. I think it's easy to read of healings and miracles and somehow translate them to equating God's power with complete resolution of problems and pain.

While sometimes such complete miracles do happen, I'm feeling more and more that we really learn to find God and His power in the times when resolution and solution don't present themselves as desired. Such tensions require really leaning on God, trusting in His timetable, letting go of our wills and expectations and trying to let Him mold our souls.

At least that is what I am feeling in my own life. I see enough in my life, both in the present and especially in the aggregate of the past, to KNOW that He is there and very involved in my life. But answers and help have often not come in immediate moments, and sometimes unfold over years, even decades. And some problems I have had since childhood (like issues with mental illness) are still affecting my life in significant ways. There is just so much messiness in this mortal life of ours, and I feel my soul stretching as I learn what of that mess I should focus on right now, and what I need to let go of for now -- to let some of it just be messy and trust that through the Atonement, resolution will come, either in this life or the next. Enduring well is my job, not necessarily fixing it all.

I think the times I have felt most distant from God are the times I have demanded resolution in MY way. I have felt close to Him as I see His hand in direct and miraculous ways, but also as I trust in the fact that He is there even when I don't see as much of that direct intervention.

Mortality is such a journey. Walking by faith is hard work.

But it's good work when I can see it for what it is, in the light of the eternal plan of God.

[Heavenly Father and the Savior, Jesus Christ] sustain us in our hour of need—and always will, even if we cannot recognize that intervention. Some blessings come soon, some come late, and some don’t come until heaven; but for those who embrace the gospel of Jesus Christ, they come. Of that I personally attest. I thank my Father in Heaven for His goodness past, present, and future.... -Elder Jeffrey R. Holland


Anonymous said...

I love where you talk about enduring rather than fixing. I always enjoy your perspective.

m_and_m said...

Thanks, lusciouschaos. :)

Annette Lyon said...

"Enduring well is my job, not necessarily fixing it all."

Something I need to keep reminding myself. I'm enduring, but not necessarily WELL.

BookwormMama said...

This is very timely, M.
I will keep this perspective in mind this week. :] Thank you, my friend.

jendoop said...

I'm reading the book you recommended, Weakness is not a Sin. Reading this post I feel like recommending it back to you, then you'll probably have to recommend it to me again. Just because we know things (like weakness not being a sin) doesn't mean we can internalize and/or change easily. This is all very hard work. It is comforting and uplifting to know we're not working alone though.

love you-