What do you do when you must stop your testimony mid sentence because in order to tell what God has done, you must tell what someone else has done, and love keeps you from just that?
What do you do when most of what you have to offer through life experience must be kept silent in order to keep from slander or harming your cause?
What do you say when you must risk any semblance of success you’ve attained in order to declare, “It is written!” and the masses watch while mocking and ask, “After all, are you afraid of success?”
It is lonely in this hard place. So few know what I am about. The details of the “why” in my life are hidden from plain sight. Without the “why” my actions look unkind…even unChristian.
I find myself in a place all-too-familiar; a place with a few sentinels standing guard amid a surrounding mob of accusers, and even worse, those who just curiously wonder and don’t know what to say.
I’ve been that person. The one who stands back at a distance, wondering how to approach someone walking through the Valley. Wondering whether or not they even want to be approached. It’s not easy being the Valley traveller or the onlooker. It’s awkward, and like most Americans we run from awkward and discomfort.
What do I do when I find myself in this place? The place where others out of discomfort look away? I run; run from the pain, the accusers, the curious, the awkward. I run to the one place that has sure footing amidst the slippery slopes. I run to the Rock that is higher, to the High Tower, to the Shadow that shields from the scalding heat of pressure. And I pray, “Lord, may You be glorified, even in my silence! May You be glorified even when standing for You looks like a defeat. Lord, not my will, but Yours be done in the broken pieces of my life.”
When you find yourself between a Rock and a hard place, the safest place is the Rock.
And I cleave to the only Foundation that never moves, my well worn, leather security blanket. For while I lay with this Book, cozy on my chest, it feels like some of my bleeding heart is mended. I remember that this life isn’t about my popularity, my expression or my opinions, but rather the laying down of these things that I might lift Jesus higher than my name, that I might express His feelings to this sad world, that I might hold closer to His opinions even than to my own.
It is in the cleft of this Rock where I watch the Presence fill up the Valley with Himself. He has given me a choice seat to watch His wonder, His glory fill my frightening Valley with light and splendor, and I peak from around the Peak like a child who peers from behind his mother’s skirts while she confronts her child’s bully.
Once again, “The Lord Himself will fight for you. Just stay calm.” Ex. 14:14
All that I have ever wanted is a chance to stand. Now that I have that chance, I want nothing more than to run. And this is fine, as long as I run toward His protection, behind the hem of His garment and let Him fight for me. I can run to the High Tower and then stand in the cleft of His Rock to watch Him do the fighting for me. Even when I want to be oh so strong, I am weak. In my weakness, I cleave to His un changing, everlasting words and I am made stronger than before.
…and I chronicle His grace here
15 thoughts on “When You’re Between A Rock And A Hard Place”
I am going to go out on a limb and ask for prayer here. I have a fear of God, not the healthy kind, the kind that lacks trust in the Rock even when intellectually all other options of finding safe haven is awash. I am worn out with the body of Christ and yet I know I am the cause for others to be worn out too. My humanness has gotten the better of me and the busy family life my wife and I have built has been sucking us dry as well. Our intention and vision began well and now seems to be a well without water.
I am the leader of this crew and have proven myself to be a hard worker/provider and all, but my words have shriveled inside and grace and forgiveness seem so pie in the sky. As a family grows, so do the outcomes of fathering and lack of fathering.
I am admitting discouragement and pray that God will restore what the locusts have eaten. I am stubborn and cynical and need an authentic revival of soul and spirit.
Thanks for your words of encouragement KD. Timely.
Thank you for your transparency here. You are in a good place. Admitting that you are broken allows Him to come and make a beautiful mosaic out of the pieces in your life. Stop striving and start leaning. Lean into His everlasting arms. He is able and willing to walk you through all of it. You can trust Him even when you can not trust others…or yourself! Relax in HIm and watch His Presence. Surrender…and let Him do the fighting for you…it is easier said than done, but it can be done. I believe that you can and will experience new levels of trust and healthy fear of your Heavenly Father. Otherwise, why would this post have touched your heart so much?
Praying for you, your dear family and all that He has for you…
I’ve been walking through a similar time as you describe here. Perhaps we learn how to walk with people and offer compassion in their awkward moments better as we go through these times ourselves. It takes great strength–strength only from God to do as you suggest. Remain silent and lean on the Rock instead of speaking. I know exactly this kind of situation. It is hard to swallow the vulnerable disposition it takes to walk a life silent without defending oneself to the world. I pray you continue to receive strength.Thank you for encouraging me today!
I am so glad my scattered words meant something to you today…overwhelmed let us lean on the Rock!
I know this post is born of many painful things for you, but I promise you it is woven beautifully with strands of grace and hope. I leave this time with you here with a renewed wonder for the God who fills up our empty places and holds us tightly in his Tower. Thank you for linking with Unforced Rhythms.
He does fill up my empty places. This us put beautifully. And I am so glad that this place leaves you with hope this time because sometimes I wonder if I paint too dark a picture.
While I don’t know the details of the situation you’re describing, I deeply know those feelings of needing to be quiet, but knowing you’ll be misunderstood if you are. Ugh. So painful, isn’t it? May you encounter Him intimately in your silence. May you sense His “well done,” and find rest in His heart toward you. Bless you, sister. (And thanks for visiting and commenting on my blog, too. 🙂 )
The safest place is the Rock. Amen sister. Amen. Don’t know the details, but God knows, God fights, God always wins.
I think I know that place well, of being misunderstood. It’s not an easy one, but God is present there too. Thanks for naming the hard places and linking up with Unforced Rhythms.
It’s an awkward place. When we know truth, but the world does not want to hear it. We want to be humble, and yet firm. “Just do the right thing” , trust Him and as you say, “cling to the rock.’ Love this!
David, I’m humbled that you’ve visited my corner of the world…and even more blessed that you took a moment to comment. Thanks for your encouraging words.
Good stuff! Good, useful stuff! I like it very much!
It’s good to see you around these parts again! Thanks for stopping by!
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