is this all your plan

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Aging anger brings me to my knees
My heart still hurts and I need forgiveness
And is this all Your plan? Answer me
My heart still hurts

And I give you control
This sleeper, has lost his way- Hands; Returning

There is something we all have in common.

Though it varies eminently, it’s certain. It doesn’t know race or social status. And it’s suffering.

It’s not about if, it’s about when. 

It’s the job a dad got laid off from. It’s the boyfriend who broke a heart and never spoke to her again. The boyfriend who broke a heart and still keeps her on the leash of emotional abuse. It’s a denial letter from the dream college. The falling out of a friendship.

A mother who passes away unexpectedly. A mother who passes away after fighting for so long. Divorce. Affairs. A relentless bully at school. An incurable condition. Depression. Suicide. The news you have cancer. Or your child has cancer.

It’s domestic violence. Broken homes. Drug addiction. Alcoholism. Giving up a child for adoption that you couldn’t take care of, but wanted to so badly. Having an abortion and enduring the aftermath and judgment. Hatred. Racism. Financial problems. Sexual assault. Senseless violence. The ongoing wars. The sex-slave trade.

The world is broken.

And life’s not fair or always kind.

When I was at my darkest moments, I just found myself asking God.. why? If you truly are such a loving God like I’ve learned about all my life, why let all these circumstances destroy us? It seemed cruel and malevolent.

And it made sense to me that so many turn their back on God after pain. I did.

Back in 2012, I said God, I don’t know if I believe in you anymore. Why would you allow this crippling depression in, just to torment me?  If you truly loved me, why wouldn’t you just take it away? In 2013, I asked similar questions about being bipolar.

And as I see tragedies unfold, in rhythm as they do, I find myself asking again– why? Suffering doesn’t pick and choose. And yes, “bad things happen to good people.” Every single day.

“If you have faith, God will take away all of your suffering.”

.. Is not true. And He never even said that.

He gave us a different promise.

Eventual redemption entirely from this messed up place, if we choose Him. And can I add– it doesn’t have to be done perfectly. Because we are saved by grace, not by whatever we think we do at the community bake sale that’s surely worthy of our escaping hell.

It’s a promise of a place where there will be no more hurt or sickness or death. 

“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. . 

My mom told me a story a while back about my older brother, Wes. When he was undergoing excrutiating treatment for his childhood cancer, he was so weak and sick one day– but he looked up at my parents and he said to them, “It’s okay. God is with me.”

Even though you suffer, just like me, it’s possible to let God hold you and walk with you through that pain. To hold on to the hope that your hurt can be restored.

Sometimes, we let our suffering beget suffering. It’s just our bitterness, spiraling. We justify our decisions because of “what we’ve been through”…And then we ask why, after we’ve walked away, He isn’t giving us everything we think we want and deserve in life.

There’s one thing I know for sure about God now. And it’s that He’s not a God of hate, but of perfect love. That He’s not just idly watching his creation fail. He’s the artist whose work we question constantly, though it isn’t even finished yet.

But take heart! I have overcome the world.” -John 16:33

We weren’t meant to understand everything that happens or the why. It’s beyond our comprehension right now. And even though it sucks in the moment, the God who knows all things knows what’s best for us, way better than we do.

“The Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He does not faint or grow weary; his understanding is unsearchable.” -Isaiah 40:28

“For the foolishness of God is wiser than human wisdom, and the weakness of God is stronger than human strength.” -1 Corinthians 1:25

The cards we’re dealt can be thrown away. Or, they can be dealt back in a way that reaches for something greater and beyond just ourselves.

I have found purpose in my pain- to try to help others by raising awareness about bipolar disorder, and to tell how faithful my God is to me.

On a rabbit trail, I know it’s technically not a “sound apologetic argument,” but I can’t seem to look at the beauty of the people and world around me anymore, and still question that there is someone higher than us that handcrafted it all.

Even through my pain, I believe it. I believe He’s good. That He has a plan not just for me, but for every person, that I can’t see or understand yet.

“On the day when I see
All that You have for me
When I see You face to face
There surrounded by Your grace

. .

All my fears swept away
In the light of Your embrace
Where Your love is all I need
and forever I am free

. .

I’m believing for the day 

Where the wars and violence cease
All creation lives in peace

. .

No weeping

No hurt or pain”

XO- Laura

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