The Haven of Rest

This blog is supposed to be about honesty. It’s supposed to be about healing. Really, it’s supposed to be a lot of things, but I don’t know what they are, and I don’t know what I’m doing, so I’m just going to throw it all out there and see what happens.

Honestly, sometimes I question if healing will ever come. I can stay fairly positive. I can say that I’m trusting God to bring everything full circle and make me okay, but there are days when I feel worse than before. I’ve gotten pretty good at masking it, but I’m sure the ugly inside has been evident to others who spend more time with me than most. My wife has probably been worried about me. I’m sure some of my coworkers are placing secret bets as to when I’ll finally snap and come to work in a dress and heels. I don’t know. I work with sick people… (And some of the best!)

Anyway, I’m not doing good. I’m not fishing for platitudes like “everything will get better” or “time heals all wounds.” Frankly, I don’t care. This whole mess really sucks. I miss my dad, and nothing can ever fix that.

Someday, I’ve got to believe that someday, things will get better. There has to come a day when this wound inside of me begins to heal. It can’t stay this raw forever. I know lots of people who have lost parents, spouses, children, or whoever else and they are functioning people. Based on that alone, someday I will be a functioning person. I’m struggling to believe even this much some days. Some days, I feel like I’ve lost total control of myself. Sometimes, I do things that I know I shouldn’t do just to prove that I can. I crave that control, because I feel like my world is spinning out of control. In addition, I’ve become careless in many other aspects of life. I’ve gained something like thirty pounds in the last three months (I’m now actively working on correcting this). I’ve let my guard down on some things and let some stuff slip that just shouldn’t have slipped. I’ve not allowed myself to fall so far back, but the fact that I can fall at all scares me. If I can go back a little, why not a lot? What’s to stop me? I’m trying to just stop, to let God’s grace do its job, and do my best to stay on the straight on narrow. Some days are better than others. Often it’s the small things. I’ve worked and fought to guard my tongue from saying what is out of step, but now swear words roll off with ease. It’s become nothing to tell an off-color joke, and that’s not the idea of clean living. Humor is fine, but I’m crossing lines that I shouldn’t. Like I said, call them small things. They’re still things, and they are symptoms of a much bigger problem.

All this being said, I don’t have any answers. Maybe some of you feel this way in your situation. I don’t have any answers for you, but I offer you comfort in the simple fact that you are not alone. Despite everything, we can drown together, and that’s worth something. But I’m not content with drowning. Not even in good company. I still hold to the fact that God is good, and that no matter what happens, He loves me (and He loves you, too). I can’t say that death is always for the best, but I can’t reconcile that it’s always His will, either. The devil is real, and he comes to steal, kill, and destroy. You know, that’s Bible, right? And when we look up that word “kill” in the original language, it literally means to kill. Even slay, sacrifice, and slaughter. That word destroy carries the same weight, but maybe even more so. It often implies an eternal death. The fact is simple. We have an enemy who wants to cause us harm. He wants to physically kill us, and if possible, he wants to ensure that we spend all of eternity separated from God in hell. The devil is not a nice guy.

Death isn’t always God’s will. It can’t be. Sometimes, things happen. Yes, He could stop it, but this world was given to mankind in the Garden of Eden many years ago, and we gave the keys to Satan himself. This is his world now, and until Christ returns and finishes what He started on the cross, this will never be a happy place. Seems right, because right now, I’m not really a happy person.

All that being said, the following is adapted from the hymn “The Haven of Rest,” written by Henry L. Gilmour in 1890. It’s good. It’s positive. I’m trying to be the same.

I, the lonely exile,
At sea, at sea.
Adrift on the blue expanse,
Running, running…

O, the grief!
O, the anger!
I’m broken. I’m buried.
Sin is my salve.

And then, a whisper
Over the thundering waves,
“Come Home. Come Home!”
Faint at first, but louder.

The Savior is calling,
Calling me home.
Despite my objections,
Calling me home.

The storm yet rages,
The waves still pound,
The rain is driven,
But I’m safe. I’m home.

I’ve laid my anchor
At the foot of the cross,
And set my face to the
Empty grave of Christ.

Let the rain fall!
The storm may ever rage!
Today doesn’t matter, as
My tomorrow is secure.

View the original hymn here.

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