It's nice to know that you're missed when you're gone. So, thanks to all of you who have been asking where I was and when I would write on my blog again.
Do you really want to know where I've been? I'll warn you, it's not pretty. The actual physical location I've been in was beautiful, but where I've been mentally and spiritually has been really ugly. You know, that lock yourself in a room, lights off, curtains drawn, watching daytime television and eating nothing but very unhealthy snack foods (I gained 10 pounds). That's where I've been since July 4th week.
I've come to lovingly refer to it as "In the Mist". It's sort of a play on words for the saying "In the Midst". So many friends, family and supporters have given me the "In the midst" speech since the loss of Karim and Phiona. Not that I don't appreciate every one's efforts of trying to make me feel better by looking for positives in a crappy situation, but I must admit that when they say "In the midst of your pain" all I picture is mist. Misty air clouding my vision.
There are different levels of mist - have you ever thought about that? There's the light mist that hangs over your yard in the early mornings. There's a slightly heavier mist that hovers even higher and seems a little thicker but you can still see items above and below. There's the mist that encompasses everything and blurs your vision but you can see through it; and there's the mist that is so thick that you literally can't move in it. Highways and roads close, planes can't fly, your vision is almost completely impaired - that kind of mist. I guess the proper term would be fog ~ but mist sounds more poetic.
Personally, I've been in some misty life situations before. I've had bad things happen that clouded my vision, or I've had an unexpected change of plans that caused the vision of my future to blur and become unclear. But until recently I don't think I've ever been in the type of mist that was so thick and heavy that I couldn't see a foot in front of me let alone for any distance.
Almost nothing seemed familiar or recognizable and that was a scary place.
One year ago my husband and I were on a path. We knew where we were going, we had an idea of what our future looked like. Things were good. In October we made some difficult yet necessary decisions that left things a little less certain - like the early morning mist covering the ground. Although our path was less clear, there was bright sunshine above and we were certain of our choices (and still are). In January I was given a wonderful opportunity to start a new life. Crazy as it sounds, my company was laying off and I wanted to be one of those people who received a pink slip. I had two new little ones about to enter my world and a year off with pay would have been the perfect way to devote the time and attention needed on the little ones while still having my income. My wish came true and my name was pulled out of the hat. I was laid off. The mist seemed to clear, my purpose seemed to reveal itself. I was meant to stay home for a while and really focus on the children - all five of them. Over time a few more not so positive events happened which brought the mist back in and this time it was the heavier kind but we still felt certain that we could see our path ahead.
Enter July 4th week and the loss of Karim and Phiona. The mist crept in. All the plans we had made - destroyed. The very thing that I thought had become my purpose - gone. The idea of thinking that maybe I'd figured out why I'm on this planet, why God put me here - obviously wrong. For the first time in my adult life, I didn't have a job to go to, or a purpose to fulfill.
(For all of you out there screaming "You have three other children!" - I realize that, so don't misunderstand that I don't see impacting their lives as part of my purpose. Nobody said that you think rationally when "in the mist".)
So where has being "In the Mist" left me? Dazed, confused, concerned? Certainly. But finally, the mist is beginning to evaporate. It's becoming lighter. The people and things that I know and love are back in focus and close by and although I can't see any type of path ahead, I can now see what's standing right next to me. That in and of itself is enough for now. And I know that although I can't see my path, God can. He knows the plans he has for me. He knows the path I'm on and as the mist continues to dissipate I become hopeful, curious even as to what he has up his sleeve.
In the midst of the uncertainty I can rest in knowing that life was and still is good, very good. And one day I'll look back and be thankful for my time in the mist.
I hope this post can give you encouragement to push on through the mist when it enters your life. When life seems to blow up and make zero sense or when circumstances seem unfair and are downright painful - God is still there. He's still directing your path- even if he's harder to see than normal.
Don't let the enemy rob you. Don't let him cloud your vision to the point that you won't allow yourself to have any vision at all. Don't give up. Push through the mist and victoriously walk through the other side.
When life seems to blow up & make zero sense or when circumstances seem unfair and are downright painful - God is still there. @stefnemiller
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