Because God Doesn’t Always Make You Feel Better

Today I am done. Today the kids win. The cancer crap wins. The pregnancy wins. Today life gets to cackle at the mess she’s made me.

You win, life. I’m done.

Gabe brought up Heidegger (even though he was a Nazi) and not caring about the “them” so much and living more genuinely which is one of the things I think my spirit has been learning the last few years – one of the preparations God was forming for this time now.

And sometimes? Genuinely? I’m done. And I think God is meeting me here – in Done. I think Jesus is on the couch watching me cry and laugh and type out cuss words to my person and I think he’s nodding. Because I think he gets it.

I think he gets what it’s like to want to break plates even though it will accomplish nothing. I think he gets how it feels to be whined at and defied and publicly shamed by the human you grew and bore and sacrifice daily for. I think he gets feeling helpless and hopeful and frustrated and at peace all at the same time. I think he gets feeling defeated.

But I also think he knows things I don’t know. I also think he knows how all this will be okay. I think he knows what is happening from a big, broad view and a much smaller one than I can fathom. I think Jesus can nod – can cry and laugh and cuss (is it okay to imagine Jesus cussing?) along with me while a better story is being written right now. While the earth and all it includes is in the middle of it’s submission to his dream. I think Jesus knows how all of this can be.

And the really astounding thing that i just can’t get over? He’s letting me know stuff, too. Bit by bit I’m getting to see his light in dark places, being led by the hand into corners where joy grows like weeds you have to bend down to appreciate. With the patience of a good, good dad, he’s filling me in and letting me know how he does his job.

So I think there is room for mourning – for feeling the painful tension of living in a world not yet what it’s meant to be.

So today I’m there. And everything else wins. And I’m going to eat some cookies and feel the feels while they linger and nod with Jesus because he knows stuff.


The chair in Tessa’s living room.

I looked curiously at the big tan armchair sitting in the corner of a living room far from North Carolina or Salinas or Fargo. A living room right above my own actually, overlooking my new “hometown.”

It was familiar and it took only moments for my memory to jog: this is the same chair Beth has had since I’ve known her. The chair I sobbed in while Gabe was gone and cuddled Ayden in during humid southern summers with the AC on. It’s the chair I joined my husband in for rounds of the hat game and spent holidays lounging in after festivities died down. It’s the chair I saw packed away in moving trucks and the chair I sat in with Raychel the size of a poppy seed tucked in my womb.

The chair in Beth’s living room in Fargo.

God provided the Balls years ago when we needed family and He has not ceased to provide community everywhere we have been, building on the things He’s taught us through every season. How appropriate then for this chair to be in the home of a brother and sister He has recently introduced to us. The Wellings and other beautiful believers we have come to know are family now, too. God’s sincere and constant love is sewn through these relationships. Reminders (like this chair) are visible stitches. He provides, He loves, He answers prayer consistently and in a way that brings Him glory and us joy.

It’s a comfortable armchair, but the warmth I feel when sitting in it comes from the heart of my generous Father rather than the stuffing.