Last night, I spent a good twenty minutes with my face down to the floor upstairs in the music venue where our church meets. The floor smelled funky [The kind of funky that makes you question what you’re actually putting your face against] and blood started rushing to my head and my tears started running up my nose and at first, I had a really hard time not thinking about what I must look like, body hunched over in the middle of the room while everyone else broke into small groups to pray.
It was uncomfortable. I was uncomfortable.
But I’m discovering that bowing down before the Lord makes me a little uncomfortable. Because if I’m bowing down, everything is laid down with me. My strength. My control. And some days, laying down my fears and worries and insecurities feels harder than trying to figure them out by myself.
I’m about to enter year 26 and for a good week now, I’ve been having random moments of panic. Call it a birthday crisis, if you will.
Am I doing what I’m supposed to? Is this the path I’m supposed to be on? Is this part of my life healthy? Is this right?
Maybe you know the kind of fear and panic I’m talking about–the kind that makes you have the actual thought to jump in the car and run away and start driving out West. [I obviously handle fear in an emotionally healthy way].
But more than anything, I’ve been questioning how so many scenarios [hard and heavy and bizarre scenarios] are going to play out. Is God actually going to provide for me? How am I going to pay these medical bills? I feel like God is healing me. Is he really? What if my depression comes back? What if I’m not capable of being an emotionally healthy person? What’s going to happen to my brothers? Are they going to be OKAY? Are their bodies and hearts and minds going to be taken care of? And this…And this…And this….
until…BOOM. I wind up crying in a bathroom or in the car or on the front porch of my parent’s house. ALL because trying to figure it out on my own is too much to handle.
My mind is an ever spinning machine, fueled by more and more “what if” and “how” and “why” questions. And the more I question, the more the machine is fueled and the more afraid I get of today and tomorrow and next month and next year.
But our bodies were not designed to handle all that worry. All that fear. All that questioning. I believe that’s why there are so many scriptures about taking our thoughts captive and casting our cares upon the Lord.
And yesterday, my friend Amy looked at me and said, “You’ve just got to bow. It’s what we all have to do. And what we’re called to do. And I think you’ll find that as you bow, all the answers will come.”
So last night, I practiced bowing. And honestly, I didn’t love it so much. I wanted to stand up and fight my own battle–to figure it all out. But I think that the more I do it, the softer my heart will become. The less I’ll clench my fists, fighting for control.
Because there’s something about the actual, physical motion of bowing down–of placing my head down to my knees–that reminds me of how insignificant I am. That my worries are nothing in contrast to the goodness and greatness of Father God.
Each year–each September–when another new year of life rolls around, I try and meditate on how I need to grow as a human and a follower of Jesus. Because life is too precious not to mark each year with intention.
And this year, I need to learn how to bow. To get down on my hands and knees–unashamed and sometimes snotty and say, “I trust you. I give it all to you.”
I pray so many things for year 26. But more than anything, I pray that it is marked by a spirit of surrender. Of open hands. Open eyes. Open heart. And so so much love and joy. I pray that I will laugh during worship. That I will not worry about the days ahead. That I will not despair. That I will become strong. That I will hunger for His word. That I will believe instead of doubt. I pray for deep and authentic friendship. I pray for overwhelming rest and peace after a year of trial and unrest.
And for those of you walking the same road alongside me this year, I pray you join me in this. That your cup would also overflow. That we would SEE the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.
That we would remember that all of HIS promises are yes and Amen.