Exiting the Desert.

Well.  It's been ten days since I've posted.  At least that's how long I'm guessing based on the last time I checked + my weak math skills.  But I'm afraid that if I go look, I'll get lost and never make it back here.

Life has been a whirlwind since Feb-Mar.  Like we were weighed down with emotions all of the Fall and Winter and are suddenly free to move about at normal speeds again.  Like (what I assume because I have never done this) swinging with a normal bat after months of practice with a weighted one would feel like. 

But life has been good.  You never know the blankets you are under until you take them off.  The enemy is verrrrrrrry good at what he does.  He doesn't bury you with a dump truck of junk all at once.  No, no, no.  That would be too obvious.  He slowly but surely covers you with layers as thin as a fine mist.  Over time the mist becomes heavier and thicker but you don't even notice.  What you feel and focus on instead is the WEIGHT of all your emotions.  As you try to wade through your path gets buried.  You are wandering into the sandiness of the desert without even knowing.  Then all at once you are there, without an oasis in sight.

And that is where He teaches you.  He begins to peel back the layers of mist, revealing His truth along the way.  I've never known the desert to be a BAD place.  Not really.  Uncomfortable, yes.  Difficult, yes.  Bad, no.  It's my learning place.  The place where God allows me to wander to so that He can teach me.  It's not a place of mourning for what was.  It's not a place I go to whine about what I miss.  It's a teaching place.  A mirror.  A "let's get some things straight" sort of place.  It's a good place.   

And once again, as in the past, it's been good to me.  I'd even say I love the desert.  I wouldn't volunteer to go there BUT I know that goodness comes out of it every time.

We are renewed.  We are clear about some things.  We've learned some good lessons and have taken away some stronger resolves.

Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins. 1 Peter 4:8 

We have learned what it means to stand for love.  God has embedded deep in us a drive to JUST LOVE.  Without boundaries or rules or justifications.  It doesn't matter who you are, what you believe, the struggles in your life, what church you go to, nothing matters but LOVE.  Love have to justify it's actions.  It doesn't make excuses.   

We have learned that trust doesn't translate from one person to the next.  We've learned that each person must earn that trust on their own and "sharing" trust opens up doors that shouldn't be opened.  You can love and not trust. 

We have learned that friendship is everything.  The people who hold you open-handedly are the people who are supposed to be in your life.  Love does not shackle or tie you down.  Love trusts in who you are to make good choices while loving you through the bad ones.  

Love.  Love.  Love.  It's all about love.  It really, truly is.  Everything comes down to it.  Everything is built on it.  Every action should be based on it.  If it's not love, it's not Jesus.  

And that has renewed my heart.  It has made me lighter.  Freedom in love has been a breath of fresh air.  We are excited about the future.  I feel like we have stepped out of the black and white of Dorothy's little Kansas town and into the technicolor of Oz. 

We have made it home again. 



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