I don’t know the last time I’ve felt this vulnerable, I wrote in my journal. As soon as I stared at the words, I knew. I knew the last time I felt the way I was feeling. Because you tend to remember those moments. Feelings of Desperation. Unraveling. Confusion. When you feel vulnerable, really vulnerable, those moments seem to be imprinted no matter how hard you try to forget.
For me, these moments seem to happen the most in times of wait. During times in the heat of the desert where you long for the rain to refresh. During times where the dark hours of the night linger and the rays of morning sunshine seem like they will never appear. Vulnerability seems to happen when I’m waiting for God to move. When I’m waiting for Him to make His presence known. When I’m waiting for prayers to be answered and Heaven seems to be silent. It’s in the dark, in the parched land where I start to doubt Him. With cracked and dried lips, I question.
Are you here?
Do you hear me?
Do you see me?
Do you care?
In the wait, in the confusion and even in the unbelief, I can be honest with Him. He can take my questions. He can take my concerns. He can even take my anger. When tears run down my face and I pound on His chest with clenched fists and demand His presence and demand answers like a child- He lets me. He lets me be vulnerable with Him because He’s my Father. Because in my vulnerability, in my rawness, He can then start to tend to my exposed heart, no matter how deflated or bleeding it has become.
He uses those moments to show me that despite confusion, anger, and hurt, He is still good.
Right after I finally gave in and exposed the true feelings of my heart, this song came on the radio – and His Spirit made sure I listened
I tried to fit you in the walls inside my mind
I try to keep you safely inbetween the lines
I try to put you in the box that I’ve designed
I try to pull you down so we are eye to eye
When did I forget that you’ve always been the king of the world?
I try to take life back right out of the hands of the king of the world
How could I make you so small
When you’re the one who holds it all
When did I forget that you’ve always been the king of the world
– King of the World by Natalie Grant
In the times where worry threatens joy and disappointments suffocate hope, I can have peace because He is the King of the World. And His thoughts are not my thoughts and His ways are not my ways. And no matter how I may feel, He is there. He does hear. He does see. And He does care, He cares very much.
It’s His compassion that allows me to come near Him and beat against His chest and find the comfort of His arms around me – even when His answers aren’t so clear. It’s His mercy that covers my unbelief, my disrespect. It’s His grace that works out my faith, that wrecks my preconceived notions of Him and stretches and grows me.
It seems like in moments of vulnerability we want to hide because we don’t want anyone to see our weakness – yet isn’t there also a part of us that wishes so deeply to be known? I think that’s why I journal the most in these seasons. I journal, because I have to talk it out and I can’t talk it out with anyone else. So rather than keep it shut up inside, I air it out on lined pages before the One who knows me better than I know myself. I spew thoughts in ink before Him who not only created me and has seen my past and sees my present, but He also knows who it is He intends to make me. He sees the person I’ve yet to become – the person that these times of wait and vulnerability may be forming and shaping me to be.
A woman who waits on her Lord. A woman who chooses to trust.
I wait for the Lord, my soul waits,
and in his word I hope;
my soul waits for the Lord
more than watchmen for the morning,
– Psalm 130: 5-6
The Bible consistently chronicles testimonies of those He calls to obey even when they don’t have the answers. Like Abraham who followed “even though he did not know where He was going” (Hebrews 11:8)
In the wait, may I also obey and have faith even though I do not know when the blessing will come. Even though I do not know when the answer will come. Even though I do not know when the waiting will end.
Strong’s definition of wait is to “look for, hope, expect, lie in wait, look eagerly for” – and the Gesenius’ Hebrew-Chaldea Lexicon defines waiting as “being strong, enduring, to fix one’s hope in Jehovah.”
That’s one thing I’ve learned in the season of wait. We aren’t told to just wait for the wait to end. We are told to wait for the Lord. We are told to expect Him. We are told to look eagerly for Him.
Because He promises that He will come.
One of my favorite verses is Hosea 6:3. It says:
Let us know; let us press on to know the Lord;
his going out is sure as the dawn;
he will come to us as the showers,
as the spring rains that water the earth.
I don’t know where you are in life. Maybe you aren’t currently in a season of wait – but if you are and if you invite Him near, have hope.
By grasping our Lord and hoping in Him, we fill our hands…God will always bless as long as we confess our dependence upon His blessing. He will always fill as long as we are empty. He will always feed as long as we are hungry. He will be your all in all so long as you are nothing.
– C.H. Spurgeon
Even if your belief is fading in the darkest night, even if your hope is suffocating in the heat of the parched land – wait for the Lord. Hope in Him in the wait. Watch for Him and eagerly expect Him to appear. Be assured that in the dark, He promises to come – like the sun that rises upon the horizon – and like the Son that warms the soul and gives us the faith to believe.
Be assured that in the desperate desert, He promises to come – so raise your head, weary one. Raise your head and look for the rain clouds. Be well assured that when they come, when they open up and the rain pours forth, those tears on your face, they will be washed away.