Life can be blurry. We can long for clarity and direction yet answers elude us.
I had a dream this past week. I was trying to find something but fog was rolling in. It covered everything in a mist that rose about a foot off the ground. Not only could I not see well, everything felt disorienting.
I forgot about that dream until I went to bed last night. I have a condition called ‘dry eye’. Each night I need to use an ointment in my eyes. It’s consistency is similar to Vaseline. I put off doing this each night until I have shut off my light. Once I’ve put the medicine in my eyes, I can’t stand having the light on because it highlights how blurry everything is. I like to be able to see.
I’m in a season of ‘not knowing’ these days. A season of not being able to see how things can or will work out. Personally and with my kids and with my aging mother. I just can’t see what to do or where to step next. Just a couple of weeks ago, I came to grips with the unanswered questions regarding my own life. When it comes to me, I am again content not being able to see ahead.
But as my kids grow into their adulthood and I watch them make decisions that I worry about, as I watch them struggle, I long for answers. I long for assurance. I want to ‘see’ a secure future for them. But things are blurry. Very blurry as a matter of fact. The kind of blurry that (literally!!) makes my heart race. I feel disorientated. I can’t see! And when I can’t see, I start to struggle.
But I’m old enough now, to realize how foolish that struggle is. Life is blurry sometimes, actually it’s probably blurry most of the times. Sometimes we are blessed with true moments of clarity. An unobstructed path that clearly points in a specific direction. And those times are so comforting, so desirable, that it’s easy to start to want it to always be smooth sailing. Life is messy though, and fog often rolls in.
I know two responses to this. My first response: which is to feel disorientated, to struggle, to feel sad, guilty, frustrated…..overwhelmed….afraid.
But then there’s the second response. The response that allowed me to fall asleep last night. The same response that had brought me contentment with my own uncertainties.
That response is prayer. And relinquishment. To surrender to God the need for me to see the future, trusting that if He is there, I can relax – whether or not the path is blurry. It’s an ongoing response though, not a one time thing. The circumstances that cause me to worry haven’t disappeared. My concern over them hasn’t vanished. But there is an answer and it doesn’t need to involve stressing out because I can’t see the answer.
I’m reminded that the second type of response involves depending less on my eyes to see what path to take. But then how do I see? I reach up, take the hand of the Lord who loves me, and I let Him lead the way.