Today was the day that I’ve been dreading for awhile. If Todd and I would have made it, it would have been our two year anniversary. For the past couple of weeks, I’ve cringed every time I thought of the calendar flipping to this day, expected to sob most of the day because the loss still hurts; it’s still something I grieve. However, God came through today. I know that shouldn’t surprise me, but I’m sure I’m not alone in forgetting sometimes to pray with expectation. Or, maybe it’s because I have been getting quite a few no answers from God lately, so I expected to have to tough out another day, look for more lessons through more tears.
But, today, He gave a yes when I asked for help to get through the day, so I want to make sure I give God a blog shout out of thanksgiving. God arranged for two of my friends, who didn’t even know the significance of the day, to unwittingly do things with me that were important. I hope my faithful blog readers aren’t getting sick of hearing my emotional turmoil; I hope some of what I share is helpful. I’ve found that after a break-up, it’s helpful to “redeem” some memories. I have to make myself wear that dress that I was told I looked beautiful in, and I have to go make a new memory in it. Or, I have to watch the TV shows that we shared, and I have to realize that I can still laugh at them. So, tonight, wound up being girls’ night with one of my old college friends, who without even knowing anything, chose Macaroni Grill for dinner and Starbucks for drinks by the outside fountain. Both of those places had meaning in my relationship, but tonight God was able to show me that he can and does have other joys in store for the future. He can make new meaning; he can redeem.
I’ve also been reading Beyond Boundaries: Learning to Trust Again in Relationships. So far, the book has been amazingly insightful. It has one of the best sections on grieving that I’ve read in awhile. And, John Townsend also gets readers to probe and ask themselves what need was being met in a former relationship that is now a gap. He says you need to have that need met in the context of safe existing relationships before seeking to have that need met in a new, tentative relationship or you risk being pulled into something that is unhealthy. Other than the fact that it would be awkward for my existing safe friends to walk around holding hands with me, I think that Townsend is onto something. And, when I thought about a gap in my life, it was affirmation. Don’t get me wrong; my friends aren’t jerks; they tell me nice things, and I’m even doubly blessed that I work in an environment where I am thanked by colleagues when I offer assistance and affirmed on a regular basis by my boss. However, there is still an affirmation gap. I’m not good at receiving affirmation, and my last relationship was actually a training ground where I got a little bit better at receiving it. So, it’s one of the things that I miss now. So, what did God do about all that? Yesterday evening, I found a card in my mailbox. One of my dearest friends — someone who knows my heart, who has cried many tears about guys with me, and who is one of the sincerest people I know — sent a card brimming full of affirmation. We haven’t talked in a month or two, but it’s like God put her inside my head and told her every single thing that I needed to hear for today. Then, he made her sit down at just the right time to put it all in a card (and her grammar is even good too!). And, wonders never cease, he made sure that the post office got it into my mailbox on just the right day. I just read the card again, and I cried again. It speaks so powerfully to the moment that I’m living in.
Like, I said, I don’t know why I’m surprised that God came through. He knew we needed Jesus, so God sent his own Son in flesh and blood. That’s more than we can truly ever fathom in the span of time that we’re given to tread the planet. But, I think that God also know that when we’re sad, Jesus can sometimes feel so…well, so 2,000 years ago. That’s why God wraps his love again in flesh and blood, using the people around us to make sure we know that he doesn’t miss a thing. He might say no, but he never says that he forgot, and he knows when I really, really just need to hear a yes sometimes.