A little over 4 years ago, I moved out on my own for the first time. I'd been living apart from my parents for a quite a while but had never had my own place. It was July 2002, to be exact and a lot was going on. I was going to be living by myself for the first time in my life, I was leaving a job I'd been at since graduating from college, a few months earlier I changed churches and prior to that I lost my Grandfather, my dog and my Pastor all within a couple of months of each other. But I was excited about the newness (at least at first) and at the prospect of setting up house...not just making due with someone else's place and stuff and tastes.
In two days, my stuff and tastes will be taking a backseat as I move in with a friend from church. My flesh is already screaming. I wonder where I am going to put all of my things. I wonder if I am really going to be able to make our shared space a home. I wonder how comfortable I will feel there and how well my friend and I will get along as roomies. I wonder how on earth I am going to get everything packed and moved in two days. I wonder if any of the men in my life will step up to help me get my furniture and appliances downstairs and into a truck. I wonder how on earth I accumulated so many things that I just can't seem to part with. I wonder if the next time I move, I'll be doing it alone again.
As I've been packing, and trying (in vain it seems) to find guys able to help with the heavy lifting, I've been feeling very, VERY single. It's difficult to explain to someone who isn't single and above the age of 25...but that is the feeling. Very single. Very alone. Very much without men in my life.
My life, it would seem is comprised of me and a bunch of boxes that I have to cart around every few years. Boxes of things that really only mean something to me, brought to places that will something short of an actual home.
At least that is how it feels sometimes. I know that is not the reality...and certainly not where I need to allow my heart and mind to dwell...but it is there and it is noisy sometimes. But then there is always that moment when noise diminishes and His word breaks through and there is peace.
When He giveth quietness, who then can make trouble? (Job 34:29)
The only thing that can break the quietness and peace He gives, honestly, is sin. In this case, the sin of putting my wants and preferences and desire for ease above what God is doing and calls good for me right now.
This road he has called me to walk, and even this next step, is not an easy one. It's not. I make no excuses about that. It is not easy to feel so much alone, to feel so disconnected no matter how much I attempt to connect my life to others, to fight the temptation to be perpetually disappointed because my life doesn't look the way it seems it should. But it is His portion for me and He if for me and only does good. I cannot begrudge what He has given...what He calls a gift...simply because I didn't register for it or the bow is the wrong color.
Where I am going is not going to be an easy place to live, either. The friend I am moving in with (though I love her dearly) is pretty much the antithesis for my personality. I am not so naive to think that SHE will be the only one sanctified, broken, wounded, changed and then healed in this deal. I fully expect to be challenged, shaken, sharpened, rubbed up against, and have my misplaced toes stepped on.
Sounds fun, don't it?
All joking aside...this is the reality of what I see, and what I have experienced at times in our friendship. I can only logically conclude that these things will magnify once we are living under the same roof. My knee-jerk reaction is RUUUUUUN! But, that is not a faith reaction and therefore would be the wrong one. God is at work in both of us, to will and to do according to His good pleasure...and He means this to be a gift for both of us. For a time, that gift may feel like I am wearing a Brillo Pad suit a lot...but it won't always.
And, if and when the Lord provides a husband, I have no doubt that the learning to live together part of our marriage will feel very much the same.
Regardless of reasons or implications or specific preparation, I know the Lord is in this. When it is just He and I in the vacuum of prayer, my heart is at rest and I am confident of His leading and also of His ability to work out all the details and make my Brillo Pad suit less itchy over time. So what does it matter how smoothly the move goes or how many men show up or how my flesh responds to differences and stress and adjustments? When He giveth quietness, who then can make trouble?
Though sorrows, heaviness, and faintings of heart ever so much increase; yet, if thy faith increase also, it will bear thee up in the midst of them. I would fain have it go well with thee, and that thou mightest not want the holy Counsellor and Adviser, in any strait or difficulty which the wise and tender God orders to befall thee.--ISAAC PENINGTON