Sunday, July 10, 2011

learning lessons

Most recently Matt and I have found ourselves in the middle of hard lessons that the Lord is kind and patient to teach. Our prayer is that we are learning as the Lord teaches, even if our learning is slower than we'd wish. Since moving to Louisville we've found ourselves enjoying life "on our own". We've been able to live comfortably in our own apartment decorating it and enjoying it just the way we've chosen. We've been thankful for many blessings from the Lord during our time in Louisville, including stable jobs which have provided for us to be living debt free. We've been diligent in the ways we're able, and have been proud of ourselves. And that is problematic. While we do acknowledge the Lord's providence and goodness, we've also remained proud of our hard work and accomplishments, as if we've done these things on our own. This is most certainly NOT the case! The Lord is the giver of all good things, and nothing has come to us if not from his hand. Such an attitude also causes great pressure... that we must keep up and maintain these things. Matt especially has been overwhelmed by this pressure lately. While he may have been a worrier for much of his life, these days have been much harder. Anxiety had consumed him in some ways (the Lord however keeps us all in his care), and he had not been sleeping many nights. His weight loss over the last few months is also obvious, though I didn't realize it since it was a gradual process. After a night without sleep things became very difficult. The Lord was good and protected us all, no one was never in any physical danger though emotionally speaking it seemed terrifying. Many good and godly friends supported us with prayer, phone calls, and company. Currently Matt is doing well. After our week of vacation with family in Kansas City, we returned to Louisville well rested. Matt has been talking with our family practitioner who is pursuing testing to determine high levels of calcium in Matt's blood. This physical problem exacerbates emotional ones, the doctor explained. In the meantime we're learning...

Independence and making it "on our own" is not all it's cracked up to be. When difficulty comes we're also "on our own" in a sense as we're distant from family who know and love us most. (We are so thankful to the Lord for the many good friends who are with us here in Louisville and offer endless support. He is good at all times and has shown Himself though them most recently.) While everyone has difficulties of one nature or another, we should never assume the rough parts of others are enough to keep us at a distance. No one has it all figured out! We realize that to rely on anything more than the Lord is idolatry. The Lord does provide family for us all, these people have known us longer than anyone else (even our spouse if you're recently married like us!). They have known us longer, and in some ways DO in fact know us better. They support they offer is indeed unconditional and comes graciously. How arrogant we were to think that being "on our own" would in some ways be better. Sacrificing autonomy (which can be selfish autonomy for me many times) may pay big dividends in sweet love and support in the most difficult days.

We're thinking about these things and the wise words we've heard from Wendell Berry while discussing these issues with him. The Lord has the wisdom and freedom to calling us as He sees fit in the future. We are more open than ever to humbly considering what it may look like to return to a place that is more familiar than new. We are thankful that the Lord teaches us every day.


The Blackley Tribe said...

Laura, thank you so much for your humility and transparency. We are praying for your family as you seek guidance from the Maker of all.

Darcie said...

Love this, friend-especially what you said about the rough edges in others.