Hold me close – You know that You have to.
Tie me up; pin me down.
‘Cause I won’t fly in a broken-wing dimension.
You change the chord and the sound.
The lyrics above, from “Closer to the Edge” by the greatly-underappreciated Burlap to Cashmere, perfectly describe the process the Lord has been taking me through over the past few weeks. He’s been holding me so, so close, even when I might have been pushing away a little bit. He’s pulled me out of the “broken-wing dimension” that I inhabited for so long, and He’s setting my life to new music even now.
What does that even mean? Well, a while back, I was at a friend’s house, and we were having a conversation about how God is moving in ways we don’t recognize. She went full nerd on me and broke it all down: “‘Re’ means ‘again,’ and ‘cognize’ has to do with perceiving…of course we don’t recognize what He’s doing because it’s all new. There is no ‘again!'” She was right, and as I drove home that evening, the Lord continued the conversation:
God: “Re” also means “back.” There is no going back. There is no “renew,” just “new.” There is no “revive,” just “vive” (from the Latin viviere, to live). No “re” anything in your life.
Me: How do I know where to go, then?
God: You know Me. Keep your eyes on Me, not what’s going on around you. I want you to begin to ask Me to “just ‘new’ it!” about every area you want to see changed. And yes, it sounds like the Nike slogan [said with a wink].
So that phrase, “Just new it!” became my current leitmotif. I found myself saying it anytime I was confronted with anything old – situations, thoughts, beliefs, whatever. Dragged-out drama with the ex? Just new it! Feelings of inadequacy? Just new it! Bad eating/sleeping/exercise habits? Just new it!
And things are changing. They are not rapid changes, but they are evident. I begin to see signposting of my future, my purpose, my “me-ness,” all of which I understood in the context of the old dimension where my wings were broken, but none of which I’ve had a clue about in the new. For the first time I can remember since about 2003, I have had moments of complete mental relaxation, absent the heaviness and stress that was my constant, unwelcome companion. I feel like I’m finally, finally coming up for air.
This is not without its complications, though. There is so much horrible stuff being exposed in our world right now that I’ve found myself feeling guilty that my life seems so lightweight and carefree, guilty that I can see great things happening even in the midst of chaos. So back to the Lord I went just last night, voicing this concern. His response?
God: Daughter, do not take on the false burden of guilt. The way your life feels now – this is what it means to live in hope. One of the most visionary things you can do is to stay in hope, even as evil continues to be exposed all around you.
Well, there you go. Fellow believers, it’s about more than just escaping this earth for the streets of gold. It’s about the purpose and plan and goodness that is for us EVEN NOW. Maybe especially now. How hope defies the logical reaction of despair, because yes, our world is a mess. But hope looks beyond what our physical eyes see, and it finds the answers we need in the goodness of the Lord, which does not change and is not contingent upon situations.
If what I just said seems too good to be true, or if you have questions or want prayer, I invite you to contact me. I would love to introduce you to this hope I’ve made my home. There’s room for you there, too.
Onward, into the new!