Tuesday, October 11, 2011

When The Answer is No...

Have you ever prayed really hard for something?  I mean really hard.. so much that you were almost willing it to happen?

About 4 1/2 years ago I did just that.  My step-dad was diagnosed with Melanoma, and it has about a 5% chance of survival.  I prayed relentlessly because I could see, first hand, the destruction it was leaving in it's wake.  Mama J was tired, defeated, and hurting.  I wanted so badly for my step-dad to be in that 5% so they could walk away from that terrible disease.

God answered that prayer.. and not with a no, but with a not here.  I prayed for a healing, and in the end I got one.. he was just healed in the only true place for healings.. in God's presence. 

For the past 3 weeks I have been awaiting word on my application to the nursing program.

I submitted it back in September before we left for Disney and I had not heard word back as of last week.  I began to do a little researching on the internet to see if I could find any information, and I did.  Rejection letters had already gone out (and I didn't get one) and nursing school faculty would be calling to schedule interviews.

For 3 days I slap worried myself sick over my phone ringing.  I did not move without it within reaching distance.  Finally after feeling as though I would have to crawl out of my skin, I found out that the answer was no.

I have been working/praying for this for 3 1/2 years.  There have been moments (lots of them) when I wanted to throw my hands up and say ENOUGH!  But I kept going... and the answer was no.

I just barely did not make it into the top 70.

I was/am devastated.  This has been my goal, and now I sit here without a definitive one.

I tried to move on from that moment and regain my footing and quite frankly what I want to really do is crawl into a hole and be by myself for a while.  Just a little time to grieve this moment in my life, but nothing is ever that simple.

For several days now I've opened my eyes and wondered "Where do I go from here?"

The truth is I do not know.  In my bible study with women I absolutely adore I broke down.  Someone asked me about whether I had heard or not and once it started I couldn't stop it.  I am broken, lost, and standing still.

But the beauty of this story is that through one of the most humbling experiences of my life it was reaffirmed that I'm not the only one.  Everyone goes through seasons in life where they are sad, lost, and a little angry.  These women listened to me, from the most vulnerable place I possess, and gave me a piece of myself back.

See we pray for things and whether we acknowledge it or not, God always answers.  But sometimes the answer is no.  I cannot understand or explain why the answer was no.  I cannot even tell you that I now have a huge life changing goal in mind.  Exactly the opposite is true, in fact.  I stand in a place that I have never been before.

But perhaps that why I'm standing there.  I think I'm broken, lost and angry, because God is telling me just to stand still for a minute.  In my lost, vulnerable, very sad place, just stand still and listen to what he has to tell me.  For out of great sorrow, can come great joy.

I  have other options that I can explore, and after this period of standing still I will look into them all, but for now I'm going to take refuge in this place because I know he has something to tell me... I just have to stand still, wait and listen.

In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness.  we do not now what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express.  Romans 8:26

When I am so broken that I cannot pray, my Spirit prays from my heart with feelings that my words cannot express. 

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