Today, I parted ways with something very near and dear to me.
Though our relationship has been sporadic at best, and embarrassingly non-existent at worst, we’ve experienced some memorable moments in recent years.
Our bond has not only helped build character through personal trials and short-comings, but helped enhance a brotherhood with others who have treaded similar waters.
You see, every good thing takes time. Rome wasn’t built overnight. Jesus spent 3 days in the Grave. And Chuck Wagon & I weren’t truly best friends until college.
It takes time and memorable moments to develop the type of lasting bond that elevates a neighbor to a friend. And even more for a friend to become a brother.
It’s the moments you share, laughing together even when others are laughing at you.
It’s the moments you share with others who admire your uncanny appreciation for something that has marked your species manhood for ages.
It’s the moments you remember that your true dignity isn’t just about outward appearance, but carrying on a family legacy or a brotherly bond.
It’s been several years since our relationship took a turn for the better. And it’s taken a lot of encouragement & inspiration seeing others enjoy and cherish their faithful friend.
It helps the delicious taste of lunch linger until late afternoon.
It helps keep warm in the midst of a colder-than-usual March.
And it helps others know you’re serious about getting that promotion at work. (It’s science, people, I’m not making this up.)
But alas, the winds are changing.
It’s time for another intermission.
But this isn’t goodbye. No sir. This is see you next March.
I’ve heard it said, “It’s rough out there in them streets.” Boy, is that old adage true.
You can get jaded pretty fast. And I can definitely feel the heat from that reality.
Over the last 9 months I’ve ventured further into the “real world,” through graduation, marriage and starting my first full-time job. With every transition, I’ve been completely humbled &/or humiliated. And sometimes, both.
I’ve been faced with an immense task to wrestle with this new reality I find myself.
Gone are the days of dreaming about being married. Now it’s time to live it out in a harmonious, God-honoring way.
Gone are the days of dreaming about starting a company I hope will change the world. Now it’s time to work long-hours, shed tears and sweat from your desire to succeed, and pray that this is really what God wants you to be doing with your life.
And alas, gone are the days of simply dreaming of changing the world around me, both at work and at home. Now it’s time to actually change it.
All these are much more difficult and draining than I would have ever anticipated.
I’ve felt the anguish and anxiety of the gravity of the task at hand.
Some days, I feel literally dead to the world. My heart is beyond burdened. I feel like I’m treading water and getting nowhere.
Rather than feeling God’s power and presence, I feel desperately alone on the journey. I question what I perceived as his prodding and exhortation to take this leap of faith in starting Casa Hogar Vida Coffee Co. In the depths of my heart, I feel smaller and more impotent than ever before.
And yet, I think it’s a good thing.
Much like many of the Psalms of lamentation, I can relate on a small scale to their despair. Psalm 62 hits the spot.
“Find rest, O my soul, in God alone; my hope comes from him. . . Trust in Him at all times, O people; pour out your hearts to him, for God is our refuge.” v. 5,8
The words of the Psalmist (in this case, David) remind me of two core truths:
1.) If I’m seeking rest or hope in anything outside of God, it will always fail me. God alone can provide rest for my troubled soul.
2.) The Lord is my refuge– he desires to hear the cries of my heart.
To end Psalm 62, David again reaffirms who God is and why we can trust in him despite whatever reality we may be faced with in our own lives.
“One thing God has spoken, two things I have heard: that you, O God, are strong, and that you, O Lord, are loving. Surely you will reward each person according to what he has done.” V. 11-12.
I find solace in remembering that the Lord is both strong & loving. He holds the universe in the palm of his hands. And ultimately, nothing else matters.
I’m learning to lean on the Lord in the face of adversity and reality.
It really is “hard out there on them streets.” It’s always a good thing to have a Divine Ally.
Sometimes I need to remember that even if my crazy desire to change the world ultimately only changes these three precious little girls lives, then every single ounce of energy, every tear shed and every dollar spent would be well worth it.