Sunday, February 1, 2009

Caught in the Middle

Somewhere in the middle, you’ll find me. Most days that is where I sit. In the middle, not sure of right and wrong. Deciding what I know is right and feeling pulled towards the opposite. I know who puts the thoughts into my head. I know Satan is out to get me, hoping that my walk of faith will falter ever so slightly so he can work his way in. I know that my faith can carry me, yet I question so much.

This morning, for the first time in months, really years, I went to Sunday School. I will admit I have not been during my married life. We go to church, but never ventured into the intamicies of a small group or class. Emily went for the first time ever last week. And she loved it. She came home with stories of God and singing Jesus’ praises. It excited me, re-lit my love to learn. So I made sure that we got there this morning (even if we were a bit late!) because I wanted that joy too.

We talked about 2 John. We talked about Truth and love. A question came up. Which is easier to believe, God’s Truth or the love of Jesus through God’s Truth? Most answered that love was easier and Truth was questioned so much more. Then I decided to share, even on my first day there. You see, I find that Truth remains constant while love is what I question. I know God’s Truth, his grace, and my reward with him. I also know Jesus’ love, his sacrifice for me and you, and the promise of eternal life. But what I realized during this class was that before Natalie’s death, it was easier to question God’s Truth more and rest easily on his love. Now, after such a tragic inexplicable loss, it is easier to hold God’s Truth, His promise, close and question His love for me. Isn’t it interesting how that changes in the blink of an eye?

So where do my questions lie? Somewhere in the middle of it all. I live with contented peace, yet I always want more of what we lost. I live with our new normal but long for the old. I love Alie with all that I am. But I also know that Alie would not be here if Natalie had not died. I love talking about Natalie, but fear others won’t bring her up because the mention of her name brings tears to my eyes. This is my middle. Somewhere between what is and what was. I know there is Truth at one end and the pull from it at the other. I know I am in between, figuring out how to surrender it all to Him. I know that one end is the God that I know, the one that we read about in scriptures. And I know the other end what I want God to be. How do I shift my longing for Him to the truth and not the other? How do I give up my dreams for His dreams? How do I tip the scales towards Him? How do I get out of the middle that I live in?

These are the questions that I contemplate everyday. I am sure you have the same questions, just varied slightly to your own struggles. But the fundamental question remains the same. How do I focus on the alter, lay it all out for him, and not lose sight of His glory and grace as I journey out into the real world?

There is a song…there is always a song with me. I am loving Casting Crowns (and really so many others) right now. The song is “Somewhere in the Middle”. It is so perfect for me right now. It has all of this in it. On my bad days, I listen to it as loud as the baby can handle, belting each lyric as a prayer to my Lord. On my good day, I do the same, using it as a praise, keeping my focus on that alter.

You can see some videos of it on if you choose. I am a fan of closing my eyes and singing loudly. You may want to as well. My favorite verse is the 4th verse. It is where I am right now, although all of it really speaks to me. Here are the lyrics so you can sing along.

Somewhere in the Middle by Casting Crowns

Somewhere between the hot and the cold
Somewhere between the new and the old
Somewhere between who I am and who I used to be
Somewhere in the middle, You'll find me

Somewhere between the wrong and the right
Somewhere between the darkness and the light
Somewhere between who I was and who You're making me
Somewhere in the middle, You'll find me

Just how close can I get, Lord, to my surrender without losing all control

Fearless warriors in a picket fence, reckless abandon wrapped in common sense
Deep water faith in the shallow end and we are caught in the middle
With eyes wide open to the differences, the God we want and the God who is
But will we trade our dreams for His or are we caught in the middle
Are we caught in the middle

Somewhere between my heart and my hands
Somewhere between my faith and my plans
Somewhere between the safety of the boat and the crashing waves

Somewhere between a whisper and a roar
Somewhere between the altar and the door
Somewhere between contented peace and always wanting more
Somewhere in the middle You'll find me

Just how close can I get, Lord, to my surrender without losing all control

Lord, I feel You in this place and I know You're by my side
Loving me even on these nights when I'm caught in the middle

Good night all.
I am off to cuddle with the Nuggle-bug. The plan is to give you pictures tomorrow. Look for them then.
Hillary, Bryan, Emily, Allison, and especially our angel baby Natalie


Elizabeth said...

Wow. I was just listening to this same song last night. It was one of my favorites too. I like the last line the best. "...and I know you're by my side loving me even on these nights when I'm caught in the middle."
I'm thinking of you and praying for you!

Anonymous said...

I do not know you, but I feel a connection to you that is amazing! I teach a mom's Bible study on Weds mornings, and one of my 'best students' asked that I read your blog. I am so thankful that God brought me to it. You are an inspiration to me to become what GOD wants me to be, not be drawn 'backwards' to what I want God to want me to be! :) We may never meet here on this earth, but I look forward to hanging out with you in Heaven someday! You and your family will daily remain in my prayers. Thank you for sharing your heart...which results in you sharing HIS love in a powerful way!