"You can't understand light unless you understand darkness, because that's where life is most often lived...somewhere between the two. It's messy and it's beautiful all at the same time." - Bebo Norman
As breaths go by, minutes slip through my fingers, hours rush on, and days turn into months I realize something... every hard part of my life, every lesson learned, every time I'm living in the darkness, it's for the good of who I am becoming. Some lessons must simply be learned on your own, we must make our own mistakes. Sure, it's great to learn from those who have gone before us, but if you never made one mistake, how would you ever truly learn?
It's true as Bebo wisely says, most often we are living in between the dark and the light... in between the horrible and the wonderful, the falsehoods and the truth. And I realize that my journeys into the horrible, dark, falsehoods are what shape me the most. Don't get me wrong... if I could constantly live in the light, the truth, and be wonderful at all times, I would. But I'm pretty sure if that was happening, I would be in heaven, and I know my time on earth is not yet done. But truly, the experiences in the dark - the screw-ups, the "poopies," the 'uh-oh I need a band-aid', these are the things that allow God's mighty power to shine through, it's where we fall flat on our faces and worship/praise/cry-out to/ the King, for we are powerless to do anything else.
During these seasons, amongst the rubble and debris, amongst the mud, this is where God picks us up, places us on His lap, and begins cleaning us. These are the moments we are vulnerable and most open to learning. As He cleans us up, He teaches us. And if we have any sort of brains, we listen to our Father. Then, with a few bruises and a new understanding we get "back up on the horse" and ride off into the sunset. Only to repeat the process soon-after.
This is not bad, it's beautiful. That is not to say, sin-away! God will always clean up after you. No, no dear sisters and brothers, let us not abuse the gift of grace. But the innocent mistakes, the lessons that we must learn, these are what God can use to show others His grace and love.
So... I'm climbing up out of my mud puddle and I'm hoping others will see that, yes I failed. But God is there for me, His arms open wide. And as I come crawling to Him, He will lift me up into His loving, sovereign arms and clean me up while telling me what I did wrong and how to behave next time. My lesson will be learned. And God's glory will be shown through my weakness. This is probably the most humbling part of the whole situation, God uses us in our worst moments, for the glory of His kingdom. I've seen it done, I've experienced it, it happens. It's exciting!! I love that about God. Everything is always the opposite of the world. And it's the best!
I took a walk down to the river
And I laid my burdens down
Before the Taker and the Giver
And I am finally found
Bebo Norman - I Know Now