18 A

Today I find myself in a little bit of a pickle.  I’m currently sitting in seat 18A on a flight from Fort Lauderdale to Nashville.  This is the second leg of my travel from Mexico and I’ve been sitting in this seat for over 5 hours now and we’re just 30 minutes into a 2 hour flight.  Bad weather and over-worked pilots have delayed this trip to the point that I’m beginning to think of peanuts as a delicacy, and I’m making bets on which one of my fellow passengers is going to crack first.

I just spent the past 5 days in Mexico with very few cares in the world.  I soaked up the sun, got a massage and slept till 8am every day.  My yesterday was truly an amazing day that ended with cenote jumping, which was unbelievable.  My today is the opposite.  I’ve heard stories about people sitting on runways for hours and I’ve often contemplated what I would do.  Turns out I ugly sleep, listen to podcasts, and then eventually resort to making senseless Instagram Stories – help me, Lord.

Isn’t it funny how life can change so drastically from one moment to the next.  Yesterday – cenote.  Today seat 18A.  And, tomorrow, good Lord willing, we will be back to the grind –  touring season in full swing, ten hour work days, and the constant juggle of balance.

Don’t ya just love that word?

Balance.

Hahahahaha….balance.  What a myth?  I can’t even find balance in everyday things, much less, my whole life.

For example…

Some days I feel really healthy and some days I feel like a busted can of biscuits.

Some days my children are perfectly behaved little humans and some days they lick the walls.

Some days my husband and I communicate well, discipline the same, and the home team is on point.  Then, somedays he makes me so mad that I stick out my tongue behind his back like a three-year-old.

And, just when you think you’ve gotten it all figured out…plot twist, 18A.

The ups and downs.  The ebbs and flows.  The good the bad….it happens.  To all of us.

One day you’re in paradise and the next day…well, you know.

An unexpected challenge, struggle, maybe the death of a dream or even a loved one.  A marriage struggle, a financial struggle, failures that maybe you caused or inherited.  18A is the unforeseen curveball on a random Tuesday that throws your world upside down.

I’ve been there, and if you’ve been around this blog for any length of time you already know that a few years ago my marriage took a big hit.  And, although I’ve written about this from many angles, the thing I struggled with the most at that time was control.

Control – we love it, right?  We want to know when, where, what and why?  And, when those answers don’t seem to exist we begin to question everything.

While I was trying to put myself back together, I really needed to know why this was happening to me and how long this healing process would take.  I begged and pleaded with God and my counselor to answer these questions, but the answers never came.  And, for a very long time I thought that if I just had these answers everything would be better, but in reality God wanted so much more for me than to simply answer these questions.  He was trying to restore my life, which meant I needed to let go of the idea of the life I thought I would live.  I needed to let go of my timing, my plans and even how I thought this restoration thing would go.

The very night my heart was broken into a million pieces I picked up my bible hoping to find a verse or two to justify my cause. What I came across literally changed my life.

Psalm 37:5-6 says, “Commit your way to the Lord, trust him and he will do this:  He will make your righteousness shine like the dawn, the justice of your cause like the noonday sun”.  

I’m gonna break this down into the lessons I’ve learned from reading this passage a thousand times.

“Commit your way to the Lord”.

Y’all, this is, by far, the hardest thing for me.  Commit means to give trust.  Trust God with your way, your walk and your life.  For me to do this, I had to give Him my plans, my timing, and even my understanding.  I had to give up my rite to be right and surrender my control.  In this process, I literally mourned the life I thought I would live.  And, as crazy as that may seem, it was necessary.  In Matthew 5:4, Jesus says, “Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.”  As I cried thousands of tears and mourned my loss, I was comforted and began to trust God with my way, my walk and my life.

The Psalmist, David, then continues with this little promise that can be so easily overlooked.  “He will make your righteousness shine like the dawn, the justice of your cause like the noonday sun.”  The Message Bible says, “He’ll validate your life in the clear light of day and stamp you with approval at high noon”.  Why is this important?  Because giving up control sometimes feels like giving up.  It feels like you’ve lost and maybe that you’ve failed – and, maybe you have.  But, let me assure you that giving up control to the only One in control is anything but failure – its freedom.  Lean in right here – on the other side of control lies a freedom that you can’t even imagine.  When you let go and begin to let God write your story, there is a beauty that’s indescribable.  And, God promises that when you commit your way he will validate your life not in the dark, but at high noon.

When I jumped in that cenote, y’all, that was so much more than jumping into a body of water.  I jumped with my husband, on a music tour with members of his band and team there.  I couldn’t have imagined this years ago.  I had so many trust and anger issues not only with my husband, but with the entire music industry.  It took a really long time for me to even go to a show.  But, God restores it all.  My husband now plays with a band and is a part of a team that feels like family – people that will cheer you on, love you well and take your picture while you jump.  When I committed my way I was desperately looking to save my marriage, but God promised to restore and validate my life.

So right now maybe you’re sitting in 18A and life has taken a turn you didn’t plan?

Maybe, right now it feels the hurt will never end?

Maybe you are begging for understanding and answers that never seem to come?

Maybe you long for a life you used to live?

If that’s you, can I say a little prayer for you?

My daughter often looks up at me and says, “Mommy, will you hold me for a little while”. It melts my heart and reminds me how much I sometimes need Jesus to just hold me for a little while.

So, in that spirit, let’s pray…

Jesus, Heavenly Father.  Help us to commit our way to you.  Take these broken plans and broken dreams and restore them in a way that only you know.  Help us when giving you these things feels like giving up.  Comfort us as we mourn the life we thought we would have.  And, when we cry a thousand tears, Jesus, will you just hold us for a little while?  Will you comfort us and wrap your arms of love around us?  We trust you with our way, our walk and our life.  For we believe that on the other side of control lies freedom, restoration and validation of life.

In Jesus name, Amen

~Mary Ann

1 thought on “18 A

  1. God has truly blessed you with and those of us who get to read your words. Love this. ❤❤👍👍

    Like

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