It started last Sunday- no Saturday Evening at Nina’s house. I got irritated with Jimi on the drive over and had just gotten back from a disastrous work week in Las Vegas– my composure was worn quite thin.
When we walked in the door Nina asked how I was, and standing in the middle of the kitchen with 3 other couples I could not answer, only cry. It was a surreal moment in many ways. The moment took me back to when Granddaddy died and seeing Mom cry about it. The way she put her hand over her mouth like it might hold it in, and then heaving shakes when it didn’t… That is just how I cried on Saturday night, though for fading dreams and tattered nerves, not a lost Daddy.
Nina hugged me and thanked me for being honest (as if I had a choice!) and Nancy was attentive and caring. It was a short breakdown, but it is somehow seared in my memory. I was wearing Aunt Mary’s plaid jacket.
The next morning we went to Grace Community Church. I hadn’t heard much about it, except that my mom knew who the pastor was and that I may have heard him on the radio a time or two.
The Church was much bigger than I was expecting, but not at all overwhelming. We found our seats and the service began. The music was presented by a 100+ person choir and large symphonic band. Not an electric guitar to be found. The songs were all sung from the Hymnals in front of our pews. Now this is Church. It felt so good to worship God in a way not specific to popular culture.
John MacArthur’s sermon totally blew my mind. He spoke not of how we can become better people, or of the sacrifice Jesus made for us, or of what we can do for this or that… He taught about the Church. Who we are in relationship to God the Father and God the Son. The Father made a promise to the Son before time began that He would give him a bride. The bride is the Church. We are a gift from Father to Son- the reason they love us so much is because of the unbelievably perfect infinite cosmic love between the two of them as Father and Son. We as the Church (Christians) get to play a role in this cosmic love story that is SO MUCH bigger than us. Praise the Lord! I don’t know about you, but I am so glad it’s not all about me. That’s just too much pressure, and not enough substance.
So church was amazing I couldn’t wait to text everyone all about it.
That night I fell asleep reading God’s word and reveling in the delight of learning something new about our God.
I dreamed I was flying…. flying up! up! up! ‘Til I could go no higher. I realized once I got all these thousands of feet up that I could not fly down. I started to fall. Falling like a bad dream, falling that makes your stomach hurt and your heart race.
Then I realized that there was nothing I could do to stop the falling. Nothing. The pain and fear were only making matters worse. So I rolled over onto my back, still falling, and let go. Let go of the pain and fear and I just relaxed. I knew God was there. I knew He would catch me. I knew not when, or how, but no doubts plagued my mind. There I found the “Peace of God that transcends all understanding” (Phillipians 4:6 & 7).
I have never in my life felt an absolute release of anxiety like that and I did not want to let it go. I took a personal day off of work to seek out God and what this all meant for me. Can I feel that peace on a regular basis? The Bible says I can, but how can I hold onto it? (The key, of course, is to let go!)
The next day I went into work as usual. When I arrived, my boss called me into her office to discuss what I assumed was the recap on the week prior. She prattled a little bit then said, “I can’t afford to keep you….” Don’t know what she said after that because my ears were thumping so loud. thump thump freefall thump thump just relax thump thump….
So here I am. Free falling.