Wednesday, February 29, 2012

sucker-punch {a preface}

scripture plainly reveals that god made me and i am not my own. i am his.
sometimes i choose to live in the self-hell of me owning myself.
sometimes, i forget that i can't do it all on my own.
and it's usually somewhere near the top of my climb to conquer that i lose my footing.
what is this great pain? this unexpected difficulty weakens me.
that little spot in my mountain comes loose. caught completely off guard,
myself and everything i held on to comes tumbling down, smothering me to death. almost.
my maker comes to me.

he shows me who he is and what he can do.
he lifts me out. every time.
this isn't my first failure at living in my own strength, making my own plans.
but he is patient. he is gracious and merciful. i'm so grateful for his rescue!
he pulls the rubble of my own strength away from my broken, weary soul.
he washes me clean from the dust of my defeat, and breathes life into me.
clean air i'm breathing now. in this fresh air i can hear him clearly calling me.
to rest. to be still, at peace and comforted by him. he is my shepherd after all.

he holds me tightly as he picks up the pieces of my life, and he builds it his way.

as i watch him, i see him choosing what i never would.

his hands are crafting a new design, and i'm not sure if i like it.
there seem to be even more of the hard bits being built in,
and the familiar things are not where they belong at all.
i'm stretching to even see them. wait. it's nearly all new!

my chest is tight, hot tears are welling up now. my gratitude turns to frustration.
i'm not sure i wanted helped just to start a more difficult thing. i shout at him.
doesn't he know i can't do this? doesn't he know this isn't fair? can i catch a break, god!?
i can't shout anymore. i am humbled by the ugliness of my own voice.
he holds me tighter and reminds me of his power.

God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.
Therefore we will not fear though the earth gives way,
though the mountains be moved into the heart of the sea,
though its waters roar and foam,
though the mountains tremble at its swelling.
There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God,
the holy habitation of the Most High.
God is in the midst of her; she shall not be moved;
God will help her when morning dawns.
The nations rage, the kingdoms totter;
he utters his voice, the earth melts.
The Lord of hosts is with us;
the God of Jacob is our fortress.
psalm 46:1-7

i mean, really, when is life not hard?
this is a new opportunity to trust his promises.
another chance to believe that the lord is good in every possible way.
because obviously, i've still much to learn. more growing to do.

it is good for me that i was afflicted,
that i might learn your statutes.
psalm 119:71

in times like this, when i am incredibly tempted to embrace unbelief, i bury myself in the word.
i think that's what scripture means there.
affliction is great in the way that it forces me to scripture study, pushes me to seek after him.
this brings with it sweet fellowship with jesus. in the crying out to him for relief and understanding,
he draws me closer. he lifts me up. i know him here. in affliction. in the terribly difficult circumstances.

he is my ready refuge. my designer, my stronghold.
if adversity comes to check my heart condition, i want it to show that i want him.
above any comfort, above any dreams of my own.
lord, make me bent on your will and not mine.
help me to trust you!

the lord is my strength and my shield;
in him my heart trusts, and i am helped;
my heart exults, and with my song i give thanks to him.
psalm 28:7

this is the beginning of what i never saw coming.
a new journey, with the same steadfast shepherd leading me.
and i'm hanging on for dear life.


  1. "as i watch him, i see him choosing what i never would." And isn't that His way? To choose something we would never, ever choose for ourselves yet He knows we need it. It is the best. So hard to trust sometimes. I said a prayer for you, Hannah.

    1. thank you SO much for praying, friend xo

  2. Praying for you now, my dear friend. Praying because the journey is never easy. Yet, Got will reveal so much wisdom as you travel on this road.

    1. he will teach us, right? looking forward to growth, if nothing else. and so grateful for your encouragement along the way! we're in this together, mama! xo

  3. i hope and pray the sweet and gracious Lord will bring you gobs of beauty, encouragement, joy and gladness in the midst of this new journey that looks different than you imagined. big hugs to the girl with the biggest heart.

    1. amen, sister. i appreciate your prayers for me, and i am in full agreement with them. love you, carissa!

  4. Keep hanging on... and when you think it might be easier just to let go... hold on even harder. And you aren't alone in this. Not at all. Remember that.

    1. laura, so grateful for you! holding on even harder, yes yes.
      love you xo

  5. There is good news!

    1. None of this is a surprise to God.

    2. He's already there.

    3. I love ya!

    1. joy, your mama named you right, for sure.
      thanks for this good news:) god is good! xo

  6. So so good to know I am not alone. Thank you Hannah. :)

    1. jennifer, never alone, girl. press on! xo

  7. i've been hiding out. when i open my mouth to speak the words just never seem to be there. i googled "devotion on joy" this morning. i needed something and i knew it. i needed to have my chin tilted up and out and over the mountain in front of me. i found it here today. thank you sweetness. xox

    1. praise jesus. you bless me, lauren. look up, look to him!

  8. Is 41:13 For I am the Lord, your God, who takes hold of your right hand & says to you, Do not fear, I will help you!

    Praying for you dear friend and I think we need to talk very soon :)

    1. love that scripture, laurie. thanks so much!
      and we DO need a chat.
      love ya.

  9. You're a strong woman, just keep your head up, He's taking care of you.
    & I agree with the comment ^^^, you aren't alone. Praying for you! ♥

    1. thanks, sweetie kelli! your encouragement is always a blessing!

  10. 'he is my ready refuge.' amen.

    winging you up in prayer today, my friend.

    1. thank you, dear nic. praying for you as well.
      press on, be encouraged! xo