to let go and be held

Anxiety.

It rolls in waves these days.  Not generally a fearful, anxious person, I feel myself shuddering under the weight of it.  I find small things, little nothings, rub my spirit in a motion that irritates and aches.  My sunglasses are too large.  They fall out of my hair and back down onto my face while I’m in search of the perfect avocado in the produce section.  I curse under my breath.  The sink that was empty this morning is full a few hours later, and I feel my muscles tense.  My husband is quiet and withdrawn and, the fact that I’m quiet and withdrawn as well aside, it bothers me, and I wish he’d just come out with it.  My puppy sits at my feet, staring at me with her big puppy eyes as I eat my dinner on the couch, and I scold her for begging.  Sunday night comes too soon, and I lament the end of my weekend, the demise of free time, the return to the daily grind.

Such small things.  Such…life.  Good life, in fact.  But rather than be grateful for the sunshine that necessitates the sunglasses, the good meal that filled up the empty sink, a man who daily shares and understands my heartaches and struggles and anxieties, a little furball who knows nothing save unconditional adoration, and a secure job that allows me both stability and ministry…I sigh deeply and feel the friction of sand working its way deeper into my spirit.

And the things that were given to me as gifts join the ranks of all that’s rubbing me the wrong way.

God forgive me.  I am the master of internalizing the small things until they become big.  My pride demands that I do my best to not acknowledge the anxiety, the fear, the messiness of life.  Because certainly, that would make me weak.

And yet, pride doesn’t see that acknowledging the groanings of my spirit makes me free to release those things that weigh it down.  To open my heart and open my hands and release it all over to One who longs to hang on to it for me.  To shoulder the burden, to carry me when I’m just too weak.  He desires those moments when I acknowledge my weakness and cling to His strength, because they allow Him to carry me.  The same way my daddy still loves it when I sit on his lap, even at age 27.  My Father delights in carrying me, in holding me close and letting me rest against His chest when the weight on my shoulders feels heavy.

And yet, I tie His hands when I insist on being independent, on believing that I’ve got this.

I can’t be held when I’m holding my own.

Beautiful are the days when the longing to be held outweighs the longing to hold my own.

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