Before the breakdown and before the last straw that falls on the camel's back. Before all that.
What if we got desperate and dependent before anxiety wrapped its cold, stubborn fingers around our hearts?
I've learned dependence before, many times. While boarding with a leaky car in Austin and while bumming on a co-worker's couch I learned some important things about dependence. But we have a tendency to label lessons like mile markers - things we've passed along the way. Once we've learned a lesson, we move on with a forward gaze, assuming the lesson is added to our lives like a scout badge on a vest.
Well, maybe it's just me that does that - but I'm only cheating myself out of joy if I live treating lessons like mile markers or scout badges.
Oh, how I love my patient and faithful Savior! He is reminding me that "casting all your cares on the Lord because He cares for you" is not merely for the SOS moments. Maybe let me rephrase: our lives are a string of SOS moments.
This is what I am learning and living.
We are made to be desperate, but not the kind of desperate that builds up to a breaking point and then explodes out of control. Not that kind of desperate.
We are made to depend desperately on the One who will trade our need for His provision.
That is His good design. Our dependence is deeper than bread and water, but our needs are all in the same well that His grace is sufficient to fill. That is His good design - desperate dependence, all the time.
We cast our cares on Him because He cares for us - because He has been faithful and promises to be faithful in the future. Our God has never broken a promise, not ever. My desperate dependence is evidence that I believe Him to be just that.
So, when a string of days fills with SOS moments, there is not less joy available. It is not a lesson of dependence that marks another mile walked on the faith road. Desperate dependence is the road we walk, the path we tread as we daily rejoice in His provision for us. He provides all that we need, according to His riches in glory (Philippians 4:19) - and there is no bank with better credit. Our provision comes from the source of all things.
The deep well of His sufficient grace offers peace (Philippians 4:6) when we cast our cares (1 Peter 5:7), believing that God is the strength for our hearts and portion forever (Psalm 73:26).
Before the breakdown and before the last straw (but of course, in those times too), we are invited to desperately depend on the One who can sufficiently provide for our needs and overwhelm our lives with joy.
I could tell you about the past two days - about the car trouble and the appointments and the millions of ways that God gave me good gifts. I could tell you about the near disasters (averted, I know, by the grace of God) and the very friendly repair shop on SE 14th Street. I could tell you about the songs I sang in my car with littles in the backseat and the way they explained the songs to their parent. I could tell you about sitting around a coffee table in community and laughter.
I could tell you just a few of the millions of ways God is providing in the desperately dependent state, but then it might seem like this is something I "learned" in the past two days.
And I didn't learn it, in the past tense way.
This desperate dependence is meant to be a lifestyle that flows like the lifeblood in my veins, keeping me existing here on earth. So, I'm exploring a life of desperate dependence, walking that road with eternity hidden in my heart.