Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Fenced In

The boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places. Psalm 16:6a

It's 1:45 a.m. There is no reason why I shouldn't be pleasantly sleeping, snug and cuddled down under several blankets in the middle of a cold, dark night. But my eyes are wide open and my mind is racing. The digital numbers on the alarm clock show that it's way too early to start the day. Instead, I lay there tossing and turning for a while before I realize why I've been startled awake.

The panic again. To know, even during subconscious hours while I should be snoozing, that Trent is not here. Waking up to that reality over and over becomes almost unbearable. As long as I am moving I can run ahead of it, but laying in a bed in a dark house means that only my mind is active. Normally, lately, I try stuffing it, holding the information at arm's length, setting it aside so that I can function, pretending that I can go forth with life. But 1:45 a.m. is too early to get moving and keep the depths of grief at bay by busyness.

So I turn instead to where I should start rather than just end up. To God. "Here I am, Lord," I usually say when it's middle of the night conversations that He desires, hoping, in all truthfulness, to not have to hash out where exactly I am with my son's death in light of the Sovereign One.

I am immediately overwhelmed with prayers for the salvation of my children. A certain teen-age boy has been where I've been battling the hardest these days. My desire to see him grow into a young man who longs for God above all is my constant plea. The list goes on for those that I love until I realize the cover up that even prayer can be. Honesty is so hard, especially with God sometimes.

I begin to wonder where God went. I can tell myself all the theological answers, but they don't make up for my longing for Him. I desire that closeness again, and soon realize who has moved. I realize that I don't get down on my knees anymore, but instead have settled for mediocrity. I am scared to draw near. Scared to feel so much. Scared to be honest. Scared to listen. Scared to say that Trent's death is a reality and this is how life will forever be. Scared to wonder if all of my children are never saved how will I ever survive eternity. Scared to let God be God if my heart is only faking the peace. Knowing that there is no faking with God.

The words of Psalm 16 ring through my brain. How the Holy Spirit whispers so sweetly as I swirl down in my own emotional spiral never fails to surprise and comfort me. I look around and realize that as I have been trying to keep all the plates spinning and the answers in line I have forgotten to look up until I have almost been swept away in the dizzying attempt to do this myself.

"The boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places." Psalm 16:6a

I have been fenced in. When I read the words earlier in the day they had stood out to me, and for the third time in twenty-four hours they made a big impact on this walk. Scripture says that God has set His lines in pleasant places. Trent's death is a boundary line drawn in pleasant places.

The pleasant place that God has boxed me in to is the place where He matters. A place where life and death matter. A place where my soul has to constantly be in the process of being made right with my Creator. A place where eternity is reality and this temporary life is a facade rather than the other way around. A place where Scripture is truth and a life line. A place where I have been tenderly placed for my soul's own good. A reminder that there is a "boundary placer" who has me just where He wants me: in pleasant places.

I forgot the next part of the verse until I ventured down the stairs in the dark and opened up to the marked page in my overflowing Bible: "Surely I have a delightful inheritance." Psalm 16:6b

Again, the reminder of eternity. A delightful inheritance filled with joy in the presence of God (Psalm 16:11). The God who has me fenced in.