Dear, dear friend,
You are close to my heart , although I may not know you and perhaps never will. I am sure we have walked in the same shoes, waited in the same seasons, endured the same pain, danced in the same joy, and relished in the same great gift of good times.
It’s easy, I know, to get caught up in life, in all the little things that will make it better. It’s easy to say I’ll be just the happiest when I have this. It’s a trap, my dear. Because we have the chance to be in the happiest season right now.
Nothing about your life has to change, it’s that volatile heart…that wayward organ that lurches to & fro that needs changing. Your life is 100% full as is, you heart I’m afraid is beating at 50%. What about this, you say. And what about this, you think. Oh I know, my dear…for I have thought the same things and felt the same feelings.
And then I fall into the Psalms and it says, “I will praise God, as long as I have being.” Having life is reason enough to fall into joy and utter praise. Life is enough. And everything in it, every possible piece there or “missing” is exactly what I need to pull me nearer to God. I am finding that the mountaintops are more than I deserve, and the valleys are not places of despair, but places to hope in God.
Before I was engaged, I fell into the if only trap. While I was engaged I fell into the if only trap….and even just a few short months after marriage, I fell into the if only trap. It’s an easy trap to lie in freely and a hard trap to extricate oneself fully. The if onlys of life are shadows of absent reality. We fill up our hearts saying if only, if only, if only! And the more we fill up, the emptier we become, the more tired our heart beats, the less desirable our life seems.
So often, we are the ones to make our lives miserable simply because we think half-hearts are good enough. While life is full and springing up joy before us, we trudge through despondent and angry. But half hearts can’t judge the goodness of a full life!
Oh my dear, the only cure to a half-living heart is to fill it up with God. I mean, fill it up with Him. Pour over His truth, cling to His promises, praise Him for His goodness, thank Him for the life you have. You cannot live a full life with half heart. You will be defeated. You will be despondent. You will be listless. I know, because I have been there! And it is only full of heartache.
This life, your life, my life requires and demands a full-beating heart to live in it. Life doesn’t shortchange us, we shortchange our life when we put half a heart forward. Half is not good enough, and the only way you can be whole is if you seek God with every part of you…even though, even when, even if!
Your life is full. You heart is half. And you absolutely cannot keep living like this. So, when you have to give up something…let it be your heart to God and not your life to your own expectations.
But I cannot leave you here without telling what is better than life. And it is simply–
Because your steadfast love is better than life, my lips will praise you. So I will bless you as long as I live; in Your name I will lift up my hands. -Ps 63:3-4 (ESV)
Just when I think that life couldn’t get any better, I remember that God has steadfast love for me and my soul sings, and I daresay, has the courage to dance at the thought! What could be better than a full life from God? Simply the fact that this same God who has authored my life is also loving me faithfully through all, in all, and despite all.
My dear, dear friend, how have we sunk so low when it is life we live while a God loves us fully, unconditionally, and without fail! Will you lift up your hands today? Will you dare to live your full life with a full heart ,because God gave it and He loves you in it?
I’ll raise my hands with you.
After all, my dear, we have nothing to lose but half-empty hearts. And in the losing we will gain…so much More than we’d ever thought possible.