Monday, January 27, 2014

Where to stand

Last year, I got my husband a book for his birthday called The Romance and Tragedy of Banking by one T.P. Kane.

I don't know how T.P. Kane filled 547 pages on the romance and tragedy of banking, but then again, it wasn't my book to read so I could figure that out.

I thought it a very clever gift-book myself.

It sits proudly amongst other titles like The History of Money, Dobbs' Complete Mental Arithmetic, Financial Peace and If You Play Golf, You're My Friend. (I understand that last one has no ties to the others, but when decorating with books, sometimes one must use what she has. Old books are expensive.)

What office is complete without the Little Brown Handbook?

I haven't read a single title sitting on that shelf. They don't mean anything to me. They're more for show than anything else, really, and all they do is collect dust. And then I get mad because I have to clean the dust off, but that's a whole 'nother blog post.

For a long time, I was a person that did things just for show. To make myself look good to other people. And pretend that maybe I looked good to myself. And I was completely empty on the inside.

I would get up in the morning and paste a big, bright smile on my face, but I knew. I knew that I was empty and my smile was fake. I knew the the things I was using to fill the emptiness weren't so fulfilling, and I knew I was ignoring the One who was calling my name.

I stood for nothing, so I fell for everything.
{roar by katy perry}

And then one of my worst fears came true. My mom died. And my sister and I watched, helpless, as she fought with every ounce of energy she had left. When she had no more fight left in her, she let go. I lived in fear of her dying from the time I was 18 to the time she died, but nothing could have prepared me for the absolute emptiness that swept through my very being. Her clothes, her jewelry, her shoes and perfume and hot rollers and pillow--all her stuff---it was all still there. But she was gone. I couldn't wrap my head around it. When the phone would ring, I would hope it would be her. When I saw a stranger that reminded me of her, I would pray that that stranger would take off their disguise and reveal who they really were hiding--her.

Darkness permeated my being.

And I still had my big, bright smile. I still pretended that I was really good. I still chased after everything, because I stood for nothing.

And then.

He opened my eyes.

I can only say it was out of mercy and grace that He did.

And now I know exactly where I stand.

He lifted me out of the slimy pit,
out of the mud and mire;
he set my feet on a rock
and gave me a firm place to stand.
{psalm 40:2}

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