Right now, I’m place in life where many of my dreams have been coming true. It’s been surprising and very unexpected. Now more than ever, I feel that I finally have clear direction and focus for where God is taking me and what my assignment is for this season of life. It’s a good feeling.
But part of me is heartbroken.
It doesn’t make sense. Why would favor, fulfilled dreams, and blessing break anyone’s heart? Let me explain.
Back when I was 17 years old, I was introduced to a song that changed my life. It’s called ‘No Sacrifice’ by Jason Upton:
To you I give my life, not just the parts I want to
To you I sacrifice these dreams that I hold onto
Because your thoughts are higher than mine
Your words are deeper than mine
Your love is stronger than mine
This is no sacrifice, here’s my life
To you I give the gifts your love has given me
How can I hoard the treasure that you designed for free
This song sent me to a place of surrender I’d never been before. I found myself on my knees almost daily, singing this song, asking the Lord to take my life and use it.
I remember the sweetness of knowing what gentle hands I was committing my most vulnerable dreams into, and the bitterness of still learning how to trust that He would take care of it all.
Above all else, I remember the joy that surrender brought to my life. It is truly the safest place. To commit oneself entirely into someone else’s hands, give up all control, and open oneself to the unknown and uncertainty of faith, trust, and submission, is a brave thing. But it brings peace like nothing else can, because we have a good, good Shepherd.
Almost ten years later, I now find myself in a season where much of what I’d dreamed of in those sweet early years of walking with Him, has been or is being fulfilled. The places I begged God to let me travel, the husband I impatiently asked for, and now the satisfaction of seeing many blurred passions come together into one clear calling, along with the practical steps to get there, have been blessed and satisfied by Him.
Yet, something just feels “off” in my heart.
And until now, I hadn’t figured out what.
Last night, I came to a moment of breakdown after many months of not connecting with the One my heart loves. I say “loves” but really it feels more like a lost love, like the One I once loved.
It feels like I don’t know Him anymore, and it feels like my fault.
Suddenly it hit me: If all of this fulfillment and favor and goodness comes without Him, I don’t want it. Any of it.
If all my dreams come true, and I find myself walking in the craziest favor anyone has ever known, and every part of me is satisfied, but I don’t know Him anymore, I don’t want any of it.
The tears came and they came hard, and didn’t stop for a few hours.
The core of my heart resounds with this cry: “You, God, are my prize. You alone are the one I want.”
And even when the busy-ness of life and the cares of this world blow all around me and swallow me into a swirl of going and doing and moving way too fast, if I pause long enough, I still hear it. I still feel it. I still know that cry will never leave.
“If your presence does not go with us, don’t take us up from here.” Moses said it to God, in Exodus 33:15.
What he’s saying is, “If you aren’t there, I don’t want to go. I refuse to go anywhere without you. I refuse to be a part of anything you’re not going to be a part of.”
I’d rather be with Him in a dark valley, than on a high mountain without Him.
This is what I fall back on, every time I stray.