hurting with hope still hurts.

why? what was the purpose? where is redemption? 

over the past three months, thoughts like these play through my head like a broken cassette tape.

I believe, undoubtedly, that we are - each and every one - designed for a unique custom-built purpose. There are things that God intends for each of us to do that no one else has been chosen for; words we are called to speak, distinct - one of a kind - marks that we are to leave on the universe.

But then, what was his mark? How could someone do all they were called to do, say every word they were meant to say and be all who they were designed to be in a shortened life? why did he only get 23 years? and what about those of us who live to be a hundred? why? how could his words, his actions and his mark possibly be done? finished? sure, his life story will be passed on, touching the people who hear. But why is that life worth more than his? why wasn't he given a second chance? why were his efforts not enough?

I don't know. but what I do know is that I should care for those people, the ones who are touched and affected. love them and be thankful, that his story changed theirs. that's what Jesus would want. sorry guys, I'm not there. I truly hope to God that someday I am. maybe it's too soon, too raw. maybe right now I'm too hardened. but I can't love those faceless people more than I love my baby brother.

and with the help of Levi Lusko, author of Through The Eyes Of A Lion: Facing Impossible Pain Finding Incredible Power, I know that God doesn't expect me to be happy about what has been torn from my hands. I'm waiting for my trash to turn into triumph. But let me tell you, some days the trash just feels like it's piling up and triumph has forgotten to stop at my door.

when your heart is broken, you don't know where to go. colours lose their brightness, and the world seems so gray. the ground is unsteady, and food tastes like ash. your stomach flutters in a free fall that doesn't stop. your fists ball up, but there's nothing to fight. a screaming, heaving, sinking panic rises in  your chest. it can't be outrun, won't be shut down and refuses to be put out. 

and the only thing left is to stand where you are, accept the shock and the loss and cling to the promise of resurrection like a drowning man holds onto a wood plank in the middle of a shipwreck. and, in order to keep from going completely insane; drowning in the depression and anxiety that is grief, hold onto this:

hurting with hope still hurts. 

I will never get over it. there will be something missing forever, for the rest of my life. but,

"what the thief has stolen will be restored sevenfold" Proverbs 6:31

so, for all who are suffering, hurting, weary and bone tired, take heart. because taking something is an action. it's a choice. it's your choice. but losing, happens on its own. and your heart will get lost if you let it.

because when you have hope, gale-force winds can blow and tsunami waves can smash into the hull of your life, but you are buoyed with the belief that the best is yet to come, that brighter days are ahead, that not all is lost, even as storms rage. 

Take heart. Proverbs 16:33

Eat well. Live well. Be well.