Neighbors are sorting through debris from the EF2 tornadoes that split our town in half last weekend. They’re digging deep to recover wind whipped treasures and stained soggy memories.
I’ve lived here my entire life but never really felt that I belong. Could be my pride or the memories ripped from my own hands early or just the fact that we were never really created for this place.
Depends on the day.
What I do know, is that I’ve had to sort through a lot of rubble before finding any glints of treasure buried beneath the surface.
Last Friday after I wrote about the darkness of it all, it seemed that heavy broken boards lifted. I could breath and there was fresh air. I felt God in some crazy personal ways that I’ve treasured all week, but then I went into several days stacked high with people and the debris started to to build up again.
It seems finding the way to my heart is a lot like clean-up after the terror of a tornado. I hear cloud-wrapped cries of my own voice rise from beneath sheets of sadness, but when I get close enough to offer a hand, the rubble shifts, a needle the widest tool that could reach between the splinters.
Maybe that’s the way it’s supposed to be.
Maybe if the path to our hearts were clear and wide, we’d stop searching. Maybe God knew it all along, that if we we’re strong and able to make our own way, we’d never embrace our own weakness. What if it’s really true, that his strength is only visible in our weakness.
And why do I draw back and recoil at the thought of it?
What if I felt like I belonged here and missed out on the understanding deep in my bones that I.wasn’t.made.for.this. I was made for something else.
I was made for Him.
I’m finding my heart and digging deep through years of ruins to do it, but I’m letting go of the hope that once I find it, I’ll be at home.
It’s a new way of thinking, actually embracing the struggle and seeing it as a gift that drives me back to the feet of the Creator-Father who made it all. One who knows how he made me and sees the shredded mess left under the trash heap in my heart and cries right along side me because this dirty place wasn’t his plan.
I’ve had a hard time conceptualizing the aerial footage of the tornado damage that’s all over the news this week. But when I saw the pine trees tossed all over the golf course like a lego scene destroyed by my preschooler, I understood the destruction for the first time.
The view I have of my heart is the same way. I’ve been trying to reach the ground level from 10,000 feet. Assessing the damage from a safe distance. But the only way to dig to the heart of the matter is standing in the middle of the mess. To be eye level with it, calling out to the voice buried deep and refusing to give up though there are weeks with no signs of life.
I’m making peace with the fact that I’ll be digging here until my days are done. We all will. We simply were not made for this.