01 January 2010

Rejoice . . . always?

Several weeks ago, I started thinking about my year of "enough." It was a strange thing for God to give me that word, because I'd searched for his heart in similar ways before and not heard anything. But I embraced what I heard and walked through my year with it by my side.

As it turns out, I'm not sure if "enough" was something for me to focus on or just a heads-up about where I was going. Sure, I meditated on the concept and it functioned as a touchstone for me over the year, particularly during the first 6 or 8 months. But it wasn't something I did. It wasn't something I strove for. Hearing "enough" at the end of 2008 was almost like a prophecy, or sign post saying, "Just so you know, this is where you're going."

In light of that, I was surprised to hear another word for the next year.

"Rejoice," I heard, almost before I'd gotten the question out of my mouth.

My response was somewhat less than I would have desired. "Really? Are you sure?"

Turns out, God was sure.

My response was somewhat stronger several days later when we heard about Dave's job. "Clearly, that rejoicing thing is out the window," I said.

I don't think God said anything, but I had the distinct impression that he cocked his head slightly and looked at me with raised brows.

"You've got to be kidding," I said. "I think I might be lucky to survive next year, let alone find joy."

Since his expression didn't change, I could only assume that he was not, in fact, kidding.

And so today I embark on a year of rejoicing. I'm not sure what that means, though I'm fairly sure it has very little to do with feeling comfortable and happy. More like finding the winged horses that come to rescue those who can't help but jump off the cliff, hoping against hope that their distinct impressions of "something out there" are real, and will become solid before the ground does.


Tammy said...

Sarah, Sarah. I LOVED this blog. It made me laugh out loud. I love the sarcasm, of course!

I am certainly NOT laughing at you because when I first saw the title, I thought uh-oh. "Clearly, that rejoicing thing is out the window," I said. I am still chuckling over that statement. It sounds so much like something I would say myself.

"More like finding the winged horses that come to rescue those who can't help but jump off the cliff." Ha Ha, now you know I really feel ya on that statement.

You are a fighter Sarah. I am sure you will fight the good fight of faith! You are gutsy that way. However, feel free to complain. I mean think about it, Jeremiah complained, Job complained, the children of Israel complained (uhh bad example). Finally, we would not have most of the book of Psalms if David never complained.

Love you Sarah.

christianne said...

It's so cool to hear about your new word for 2010. And I can just imagine how surprising it was to hear that word, given the circumstances you've recently been facing.

I like hearing how you and God talk to each other. :)

kirsten michelle said...

All I can say is "YES!!" Rejoice.

I remember hearing a sermon on 1 Peter within this past year and the pastor talked about how in much of the life we live, we might not find reason to rejoice.

I wonder if it's like the pastor said: not about rejoicing in our circumstances or our feelings about them, nor even yet the difficulty we face, but rejoice in that even in the midst of our loss and grief and difficulty, we can know that perfection waits for us, that God Himself will welcome and embrace us, and that one day we will leave this shambles of a home and take up residence in the place prepared for us.

Blessings to you this year as you REJOICE!!

heather said...

It's funny how enough connects to rejoice, and how both connect to ordinary (thinking about your last post). Funny how "ordinary" seems to be a theme these past several weeks with several of us.
By the way, what's this part-time writing gig?
Meanwhile, I'm still trying to come up with this year's theme song.

Sarah said...

Tammy, thank you. You give me courage and laughter, which are two things I find myself sorely missing sometimes these days.

Christianne--yes . . . quite surprising.

Kirsten, you're right. If nothing else, there's joy that THANK GOD, this is not all there is.

Heather, I'm trying to figure out exactly how to articulate the connection there and failing, spectacularly. Email me for more on the writing, though it's nothing glamorous . . . too much to post here, though.