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Dumbfounded

February 16, 2014

I don’t know what to say: Should I feel a blip of joy that a friend wondered if this blog had been shot down by trolls? That might mean I was controversial enough to be a target :).

Alas, I’m not.

My long break has a plain-vanilla provenance. I failed at something important: I was surprised by a fiery trial that really ought not have surprised me. (I Peter 4:12)

Empty

Don’t ask me why it did because I could only blather  meaningless stuff about heart attacks, migraines, MS and other things –as if my human-O-meter reading “EMPTY!” dialed up the “God who relents from sending calamity,” instead of the One who, “giveth more grace when the burdens grow greater.”

So I really was surprised. It really has thrown me for a loop. Struck me dumb for months.

Even now I’m not sure how I will blog about it because radical integrity is at the heart of the new thing God is teaching me: What’s going on inside my heart must match what’s going on outside in public view. But blogging is a medium that has always allowed bloggers to filter. You read what I show you. But everything going on in my life is not mine to share. So blogging with integrity is a feat I will be praying over.

I’ve also spent these months of blog silence feeling freedom from reader-stats and pondering whether that means blogging could be spiritually dangerous. Why do I blog? Why did I install  site-metering software at all? (Okay: Why do prospective publishers care? Ah….I can’t get on a high horse about that one as an editor I know very well….)

So then, why do I sit here engaged in what could be the pursuit of the praise of men? Well, my pastor this morning looked me in the eye and challenged me to blog the Word so I guess I can take that as my excuse.

But unless you’ve blogged, and been followed by a significant number of people, and then opened your fingers –stopped writing –and let all your followers go and felt the settled peace of knowing that on a hard day, you could only look up to God for encouragement, not out to views and comments, you might understand my reluctance to begin again.

See, I am far from out of the woods. This is not a, “been there, done that, triumphed” story. Even though God is right here with me, there are many long days ahead. But that’s another thing He’s taught me: the difference between “the praise of man” –empty, vain, flattery-seeking to be shunned –and the support of friends, who are utterly indispensable in the trenches.

This is a thinking blog, not an easy, feel-good one, so the only people here are those who want to be here. If you take something away from reading, I am blessed to have shared.

So this is what I can promise you in the coming months:

  • There will be holes in this story, big skips in continuity and between subjects that no writer/editor worth her salt would allow to stand. But I must, or I can’t write at all. And write I must. So I’m going to wing it, ask you to forgive the leaps, and write on.
  • There will be holes in the frequency with which I can post. Writing can be an escape for me and I can’t allow blogging that precedence in this season. But writing is also a discipline and I will try to post at least once a week.
  • I will be wrestling with some hard subjects like suffering per the integrity point above. I know some of you are wrestling with similar questions. I am praying there is some encouragement in thinking out loud together.
  • I will be wrestling with hard questions in the context of the Bible. Some of these things go so deep that seasoned Biblical counselors have said, “I don’t know how to counsel on this.” But thank God (literally) that He gave His Word, the Bible, to believers, and also gave us the Holy Spirit to help interpret it, and gave us direct access to Himself in prayer.

God’s Word is not silent, even when we humans find ourselves, like Job, struck dumb.

7 The law of the Lord is perfect,
reviving the soul;
the testimony of the Lord is sure,
making wise the simple;
8 the precepts of the Lord are right,
rejoicing the heart;
the commandment of the Lord is pure,
enlightening the eyes;
9 the fear of the Lord is clean,
enduring forever;
the rules of the Lord are true,
and righteous altogether.
10 More to be desired are they than gold,
even much fine gold;
sweeter also than honey
and drippings of the honeycomb.
11 Moreover, by them is your servant warned;
in keeping them there is great reward.

12 Who can discern his errors?
Declare me innocent from hidden faults.
13 Keep back your servant also from presumptuous sins;
let them not have dominion over me!
Then I shall be blameless,
and innocent of great transgression.

14 Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart
be acceptable in your sight,
O Lord, my rock and my redeemer.

Psalm 19:7-14, ESV

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. Sue permalink
    February 17, 2014 10:30 pm

    Carrie, your words are an encouragement and gift to me. So thankful for your “thinking” blog. So true, God’s Word is not silent. Praying for you. 🙂 ~ Sue

    • February 18, 2014 9:05 am

      Thank you for blessing ME this morning, Sue! I was just praying this for all of us from Philippians 1:9-11: “And it is my prayer that your love may abound more and more, with knowledge and discernment, so that you may approve what is excellent, and so be pure and blameless for the day of Christ, filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ to the glory and praise of God.”

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