For the month of December – in honor of Dressember – I’ll be blogging everyday! Thoughts on anything from fighting for justice to feminism, from dresses I’m wearing to books I’m reading, and everything in between.
Construction typically means bad traffic, gross smells, and unwelcome loud noises. All of these were part of my morning, as they are repaving (I think?) the main road by my house. Everything was pushed over to one lane, there were confusing cones everywhere so I wasn’t sure where I could turn, and it was unpleasantly loud. I’m typically not a fan of construction, but today it held something it usually doesn’t: a life lesson.
Watching men tear up the crumbling road, only to be followed by men repaving the newly exposed ground, I realized that construction has to make things worse before it can make them better. It tears down the walls to build the new house. It demolishes the kitchen to add the new appliances. Even minor construction projects involve taking things apart, turning off the electricity or water for a period, causing some kind of inconvenience. You have to, to be able to get the job done.
I’ve been learning a lot about growth lately. Mostly that it’s not fun, it’s a lot of hard work, and I wish I could avoid it. But also that growth is so necessary for maturity, for healing, for living a life you’re proud of. I’ve been making hard choices and embracing scary situations – because I feel called to them. But growth is a lot like construction – sometimes you have to make things worse before they can get better. You need to face the pain in your life, before you can heal from the pain. You need to have the vulnerable conversation before you can move on from the situation. You need to mourn the loss before you can fully accept the loss.
And growth, just like construction, slows down your life. Sometimes to a crawl. Sometimes you don’t know when it will be over (like the never ending expansion of the 5 freeway….). Sometimes you feel like you could get out of your car and walk faster – but you’re forced to sit in the middle of the mess. Sometimes you need to be forced to slow down, to sit back, and just be.
I heard recently that healing from heartache is very similar to healing from a broken leg – not simply romantic heartbreak, but any kind of hard, painful situation that causes your heart to grieve. Just like being stuck in a cast, you’re immobile for a season. You need to sit back and allow yourself the time to heal. The picture was painted of Jesus holding a broken heart in His hands, healing the pieces back together. But healing takes time – more time than we typically want it to. But what a beautiful Healer we have, who wants to sit with us in that – in the pain, in the process. We may be “immobile” for a while, but He wants to use that time to shape us into someone more resembling Him.
Sometimes, when I want a change to happen in my life, I get frustrated when the opposite seems to happen. I’m trying to make my life better, and all of a sudden it seems to be getting worse. Now I realize that maybe the construction process has just started. Maybe I’m tearing some things apart, to repave that road. Maybe I’m demolishing some areas, in order to spruce them up better than before. Maybe I’m being forced to sit in this traffic, to sit in my heart shaped cast molded by my Savior’s hands, to heal into the person I’ve always wanted to become.