It had began eight years ago, and it had began with great purpose. Promises were made with words spoken. There was great expectation and a lavish longitude of hope in new beginnings, in the joining of two lives. It had all the potential to have purpose. Because I have seen it before, in many other couples; beginning, becoming and, doing. I’m sure I had seen those couples huddled together like a team before a Rugby match, egging each other on, planning attack, organising the final strike. Being a team, to accomplish that purpose given to them, together.
But we had become two people, on opposite teams, trying to be a team. We were falling A-part, with a capital A and I was running away, giving up. And I sat in front of those people, possibly friends, but almost strangers bringing them into a world we had created. They might be confidents or advisors, but I was inviting them to view our chaos, to view our pain, as if our life was in a witness box. I was uncomfortable and tormented by what they must think of it. And of me.
I tell them everything; a story of what should be a tale of two people trying to work together, as a team, within what is known as a safe haven, was becoming clear to be a malfunctioning, mutilated, institution, set up to protect and honour. I was honest about everything and where it was all at, right then.
When I had finished I paused and looked up. And, this man, after listening keenly, asked very gently and very politely, whilst simultaneously apologising, just in case he sounded too harsh,
‘so, um, where is God… in all this?’
There was a strained, uncomfortable silence. I sat quietly. God had not been mentioned once in the hour I had been speaking.
All I could hear was my heart, beating against the inside of my well-constructed tunnel. And I was not quietly contemplating God’s position, or His location in my life. I was indignant.
God had, after all, become just a faint, dim light ahead in my tunnel. A supposed infinite hope, untouchable and remote, unconnected or unrelated to where I was. That light had little effect on my current circumstance. I was walking alone, and I no longer called God into my sphere of thinking, let alone prayer.
I started to feel slightly claustrophobic in my safe tunnel, as if someone was shrinking the sides.
The question, momentarily flicked a switch on to the past. Momentarily resonated to a person I had once been. And I questioned, at what point, God had just stopped. being. there or here.
I had considered myself not just a believer but a true child of God, a devout believer, I was raised an all singing, all dancing born again believer. I had been a Christian for over 20 years. And yet, at my bleakest moment, I acted entirely alone.
Or, with an accepted belief that God, as a loving father did, just wanted my happiness.
And so now it was my time to take possession of just that, in the understanding that even if there was a few fences broken along the way, in the end Grace would find its way to Gods heart.
But I sat in front of this couple, my thoughts continuing to echo silently round my head. My mind attempting to grasp some explanation, some plausible self-defence to the question.
And the only question I had was rhetorical. Could they not see how hard I had been trying?
Did I want God to be in amongst my life? no. I wanted God in a box. In the far distance. Far enough away so that I did not have to answer difficult questions, so that I did not have to change, or try anymore.
I had wanted purpose, and since my journey had never seemingly reached its destination, I decided to switch roads.
My journey with God had become about a destination.
And the journey was just hard. I was trying so hard to be good enough for a good destination, a great purpose.
And in the end, with no destination on the horizon, there was no purpose. And, although I still remained what I believed to be faithful, to God, actually my faith in His purposes was failing. Like an unrequited love, notwithstanding the need.
I had missed the point.
And over a period of years God showed me how, gently showing how it was all meant to be.
Grace was never just about where it took me, but how it should change my perspective.
It was never about where I was going, but about being present here and now with God and being able to have that all consuming access to His presence through the Grace given to us through Jesus Christ.
I had simply forgotten that seeking Jesus, was all the trying I needed to do.
And, accepting very deeply that all I was right now was enough.
Not what I might do and what I might become.
My ‘trying’ is in the enjoyment of every moment in my God-given life.
The hope given to me, lies, not in a pinhole light way-ahead, in front of me, but a shining light all around, here and now.
And our purpose together, as man and wife, is to find each other in the everyday, and to know each other, like no one else.
We were created for relationship. That is our purpose. Everything else flows from that.
To love, and be loved. To know who I am, in God. And to know where God is, in amongst my life. Because if I see Him there, I am walking beside Him.
Purpose-filled love… it began, in the beginning, when God created beauty to fill the black void. When a light-filled presence was brought to life, bringing life and love, and where nothing else was needed. He craves our consciousness to be aware of Him in the everyday. He gave us a new light, Jesus, to forever shine in our lives.
‘At the heart of the Christian message is God Himself waiting for His redeemed children to push into conscious awareness of His Presence’ AWTozer
And there, right there, I found freedom, in His rest. There, I found purpose all around me, in amongst my life when He showed me the goodness that surrounds me. There He released me to love, because my vision has cleared.
And every moment I worship Him in my heart, my purpose is restored.