I've been feeling nostalgic the last few days and today I found myself reading my own blog. It's been a while. For those of you who don't know, I got divorced last summer.
My word for the year this year is "surrender". This is a big challenge for a type A over-achieving control freak, but it's also a relief. As believers, we know this as trusting in the sovereignty of God. I love this quote on what it means to surrender.
"Surrender is a beautiful movement in which you gracefully, willingly, languidly fall, only to find midway that you have been gathered into some unimaginable embrace. Surrender is letting go, whether or not you believe the embrace will occur. It's trust to the hundredth power- not sticking to your idea of the outcome, but letting go in the faith that even the absence of an outcome will be the perfect solution." Rich Roll quoting Daphne Rose Kingma in his book Finding Ultra
Roll goes on to say, "Sometimes in life we're lucky enough to receive the precious gift of clarity. I suddenly realized that success wouldn't come if I made today about me. Rather, success would come only to the extent that I could drop my ego and align myself with something higher and more fundamental."
Of course, we know that something "higher" is God and the "fundamental", His Word.
I have to keep reminding myself, in small things, and big, to surrender my hopes, my dreams, my plans for my kids, all of it to God and His perfect will. It's hard to let go, but such relief after I do it. Each and every time.
I was reading the end of Crime and Punishment again and choked up like I always do upon reading Dostoevsky's final words about his unlikely protagonist. The end of the book finds Raskolnikov in a Siberian prison serving a 7 year sentence for manslaughter. He has just taken up his copy of the New Testament for the first time. And while I always cry at the end of this book, as I confess I do at the end of many books, I can't help but think I feel these parting words especially meaningful and appropriate to me in the wake of my divorce.
"He did not know that the new life would not be given him for nothing, that he would have to pay dearly for it, that it would cost him great striving, great suffering. But that is the beginning of a new story- the story of the gradual renewal of a man, the story of his gradual regeneration, of his passing from one world into another, of his initiation into a new unknown life. That might be the subject of a new story, but our present story is ended." Fyodor Dostoevsky in Crime and Punishment