a bitter glory

Some times, I do not think I pray very big things. Some times, I do not think I ask for all that much from God.

Some times, I get the impression God does not really care what I am asking for, but he does care about my best interest, and his plan. That is hard to swallow.

I have recently had a small dream, a small prayer, a hope, taken away from me. It wasn't even something I had outright asked God for, it was something I always assumed would be there. Those roads were closed off to me, as the song says, while my back was turned.

When it was taken, I was crushed, and a part of me felt a little betrayed and more than abandoned by God. Thankfully, some wonderful sisters in Christ from my church held my heart close to theirs and said - "Cry out. He can handle it. Ask the questions. Let your heart break. He will not leave you."

So I did. I sat on the floor and cried. I cried praying at night with my husband. I ran hard and harder, looking for some peace. I shut my Bible. I opened my Bible. I shut it again.

Strange things started happening. It wasn't big, it wasn't small. As I turned to God and said, "Anything but this," he turned to me and said, "But this, this is for my glory." I have had so many blessings poured out on me over the past few weeks and every single one I was willing to give back to God for what he had taken.

God was not interested in negotiating this-blessing-for-that-one with me. He is patient. He is kind. He did not turn from me in my distress - he handled my crying, my brokenness. But he did not budge.

The more I resisted, the more glory I saw around me. A bitter glory. A glory despite my pain, a glory that still included me, while I was still hanging out on the floor.

In it all, the more glory I see, the more I see of Him. The more I see of him, the better I do at accepting his plan while dealing with my hurt. The more my bitterness turns to praise.

I don't quite understand it. I can't really wrap my head around it except for this one thing - grace. Grace to love me as a daughter when I'm broken. Grace to work with me despite my resistance. And grace to pull me forward into a place of glory.


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