Tuesday, December 31, 2013

After the Rush

It was like hitting the highway. Stepping on the gas pedal so hard as if I were on a drag race. Beating the red light. Relentless overtaking. Mumbling words of disappointment over drivers who seemed like taking the ride a leisure walk in the park. Didn’t care if it rained or if the sun set. Didn’t matter if the music were in the 80s or Katy Perry. I was focused.

That’s 2013 for me. Fast. Although one of my strong points is context and that I could pull everything together, it’s surprising that this year seemed like a blur. There was no stopping. No vacation trips. No leisure. My mind was unstoppable in producing ideas and questions. Man, how hungry was I!

Last year was like a slow motion, though. I tasted God’s love in ways I have never experienced before. Like I was a little child being watched with my every move. I was cradled and adored. It was like an assurance of his presence when some hard stuff happen.

The hard stuff was 2013. Marched on as long as I could. Conquered as long as there were walls to be torn. God was with me. And we were unstoppable.

I drove all the way to the end, and when I hit December 31, I suddenly stopped. Looking through the windows, I only watched people laugh and live. It’s almost as if being with myself was a whole new strange thing after one whole year of chasing. So here I am, finding solace in isolation from the noise of the world. It’s strangely silent.

After the rush of 2013, sitting here and being acquainted with myself again, I find peace in a pause.

In the bible, when the Israelites were freed from slavery in Egypt, they went through a long process of preparation. A long, agonizing 40 years of disobedience in wilderness. The law was given. Offerings were made. They fasted and prayed. God forgave. And there were moments that I was like, ‘Come on now! let’s go to Canaan and conquer it now!’

But then, as Ecclesiastes says, there is a time for everything. No shortcuts. And while I feel like I was in an extreme pursuit this year, God never ceases to invite me to rest in his presence. To be still and hear from Him. It’s amazing how after a long drive, I am reminded that I was never alone.

It’s not all about conquering. For what is the fight for if it were not done for love? Why else should the promised land be seized if it were done for selfish gain? Everything is meaningless if God’s not there. Whether in a battle or in a pause.

It’s always amazing how the God who made the entire universe would desire to be with me. It’s mind-blowing how I am the reason his Son would die for. It’s not all about conquering. It is experiencing the magnitude of his love. It’s breathing his existence in my life. It’s surrendering all of me.

Yes there are promises yet to be fulfilled. Seas yet to be crossed. But in the most intimate moments with God, my arms are strengthened. I am filled. And tomorrow is another fight.