It’s 2:55am and I told myself I would be laying in bed by 12:00, 12:30 at the latest. I layed on my blankets around 12:50, so I wasn’t too far off my mark. It’s way too hot to actually get under my covers. After about twenty minutes of not being able to stop thinking, or doze off I knew it was going to be one of those nights. So I leaned over and turned on my light and read a few chapters of a book, usually this helps me sleep. This was to no avail. I thought it was quite strange that I couldn’t sleep considering I was dozing off in class, on the bus and for my powernap this afternoon.
These nights usually come for me when my head is full of thoughts. To be honest I usually get these nights when I’m thinking about a girl and how awkward it was a few hours before or how nervous I am for the next night. It wasn’t this at all tonight. I was reading, praying a bit, thinking about how much I wanted to sleep and tossing and turning. It was 2:00 and nothing was working, so I just prayed and told God that if He was doing this than to let me know what’s going on; teach me what he wants to teach me. I don’t say this too often, but he told me to go for a walk, I argued and justified for about thirty seconds but I’m getting better at just going with it when I feel lead in a direction so I just put on some clothes and walked out the front door into the fresh Toronto air.
As I got to this one tree and reached up to grab a leaf, a habit of fidgeting that I have latched on to, I wondered why I had such a problem with leaving things unfixed. Nights like this were not uncommon when I had loose ends to tie in another relationship or something of the sort. If someone is telling me something about someone else or about themselves, some sort of issue or problem, my first reaction is to offer advice. I don’t think it’s a pride issue in me thinking that I have it all together and am the guru of good information for you to put your life back together; I think it’s just that I hate to see things unfixed and I want to see anything and everything put into action to get it back together. I’m so focused on seeing a finished, fixed product that I miss the journey and process that it takes to bring it to that point.
I’m a good listener at times, but I never fail to give advice. I’ve been through a bit, and have been gifted with some wisdom to be able to help in a lot of situations, so I just want to throw that out there with the situation hoping that everything will get back to better be fixed by nightfall. If it isn’t, I’m going to lose sleep. I’m learning a few things through all this. One, everything was already fixed at the cross. This is in an eternal perspective of course, and all our sickness, mess-ups, sin and inability to do things to its fullest capability is all brought to completeness in eternity. If we can fathom that, things lose its urgency, and we are able to rest in our Saviour and the work that he has already done for us. Two, the fixing process is just as much part of the solution as the final product in our lives. Sometimes I want things to be fixed so bad and so instantaneous that I forget about the journey that is involved. I read tonight that the journey is the destination, and that is ringing true so much more as I understand Christ better. If we just want everything to be fixed over night, we lose so much of what Christ is doing in the fixing process.
This is where I have the hardest time. I’m not patient enough. It’s the fixing process that is the hardest to go through and the hardest to watch through other people. It is during this process where cancer eats away at a feeble body, or someone is torn apart by a sexual past, or someone is depressed and fighting with their insecurities, or someone is drowning out emotions with alcohol, or someone is calloused by insults from someone close to them. This doesn’t look like someone being fixed. This looks like to me someone being unfixed, wrecked, broken and torn-apart. I want to pull people out of their situations and help them right now. When my grandma is sick, I want her to be healed right now. When my friend’s heart gets broken I want to make them feel better by snapping my fingers. It’s these situations that Christ is showing me that the best isn’t to be pulled away from them, but to endure through them. When Christ said he wouldn’t forsake us it didn’t mean he would make things easier, he just meant he would be close during the hard times.
I hate being in the middle of hard times. I hate watching people go through these times. Yet I feel an unsettling peace about being in them and watching people struggle and be tortured through them. It’s unsettling because it hurts more than anything, its peaceful because I know God is in control. It is such a paradoxical feeling. A feeling that fits into the Christian story but feels so unnatural as a human.
God help us all long to be fixed and see people fixed but trust you to do the fixing, no matter how long, gruesome and torturous it may look or seem.