The Dreams That We’ve Been Given

… holding the line from the back of the car, miles and miles from where you are, maybe the hardest things are the dreams that we’ve been given and you scream and you sing and you shout, there’s one way in and there’s one way out, help me to find my way back down… 

God always says yes. Assuming the correct internal disposition and a request for good and holy things, of course, but He always says yes.

Sometimes it’s, “Yes, just – not right now.”

If any of my more specific prayers in the last ten months have been making it through the appropriate criteria, then I’ve gotten that one an awful lot over the past two weeks. I told Mother three Fridays ago that my day had felt like a funeral.

But He keeps saying yes; isn’t that funny? He really does have such an interesting sense of humor. Here I am, quite ready to be frustrated and angry and disappointed and despairing and altogether disagreeable, and I find – I can’t be, because for every single shattered drop of hope in something that I’ve been begging for, I’ve been, shall we say, “compensated” with the coming true of two or three old dreams that I’ve long since laid down at His feet with peace in my heart and trust in His timing, dreams from two or three or five years ago.

I can’t honestly say that it’s made any of the not right nows easier to bear – the cynical consolation prize whispered to the darker part of my subconscious is entirely my own fault – but a) it’s Lent, and b) I am grateful that He’s in my face about the fact that He is there and He is in control.

It’s absolutely ridiculous to be struggling between this immense gratitude for so many dreams come true and this fear that the dreams of today will take two or three or five years to be answered because of my current immaturity in not yet having been able to lay them down with complete faith. Aren’t we pathetic like that, we silly fallen human beings? A vicious cycle of learning to let go and let God, but not really having learned the lesson, because you’d think that all the dreams come true so completely beyond anything we really had the capacity to dream up ourselves would have made us more eager and ready and anxious to approach our prayer with a holier detachment.

i know i’m filled to be emptied again…

Truthfully, I’m going through one of my tired phases again. I hope I’ve gotten better at bearing it as the years have flown by – that is, I hope others have found me less disagreeable as I’ve gotten older – but it’s frustrating to still come back to the refrain, I’m not suicidal; I’m just tired of being alive. do mean it less and less as I get older, and most of the time I can laugh at myself for being so morose, but sometimes I get so bogged down in the fear of how much longer it’s going to take me to get past it altogether.

… i’m tired, i’m worn, my heart is heavy from the work… i’ve made mistakes, i’ve let my hope fail, my soul feels crushed by the weight of this world… life just won’t let up, but i know that You can give me rest, so i cry out with all that i have left… let me know… that You can mend a heart that’s frail and torn, i want to know a song can rise from the ashes of a broken life and all that’s left inside can be reborn…

I cry that I’ve begged to know how to bear these times better, and I know in my heart that the prayer’s Augustinian to its core… not yet, not yet. We’ve all a stroke of masochism. And yet he’s a Saint, and so we’re called to be, each and every one of us. Father Grogan asked us, What is perfection? and then, Perfection is… the struggle. On Ash Wednesday, we bid each other, Happy beginning of Lent, because sharing in the redemptive suffering of Christ is such a lovely privilege, isn’t it? But the weakest parts of my self beg for the roller coaster to even out a bit.

I’m tired, Lord, I’m tired. Tired again, and I’m sorry, I’m so sorry, because I know that You’re always tired of how broken we make ourselves and with how little earnestness we seek Your healing. For now, all I can offer is that I’m finally able to sing, i am restless, i am restless… and honestly be able to finish the line, i am restless looking for You. i am restless, i run like the ocean to find Your shore.

So take that as the milestone I offer You, Lord, the one thing that I can offer right now with confidence. I’ll try to have a better one soon. For now, it’s all my heart can manage.

… You could plant me like a tree beside a river, You could tangle me in soil and let my roots run wild and i would blossom like a flower in the desert, but for now just let me cry… set me like a star before the morning, like a song that steals the darkness from a world asleep and i’ll illuminate the path You’ve laid before me, but for now just let me be… let me go like a leaf upon the water, let me brave the wild currents flowing to the sea and i will disappear into a deeper beauty, but for now just stay with me, God, for now just stay with me…

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One comment

  1. I enjoyed reading this so much Ais and agree completely especially with the, not suicidal, but just don’t want to be here portion. My problem is the patience and belief that things will get better and happen that I can’t seem to find.

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