There are piles of clothes and boxes of stuff piling up in the corners of our house. I’m emptying out cupboards, throwing away junk, selling furniture, and filling suitcases in my spare time. We are in the middle of moving across continents and my heart is also unsettled.
I’ve done this many times in the course of my 34 years of life and every time it feels like the first time. I don’t think we ever become experts at leaving or uprooting our lives. My eyes run with tears as I run through the streets of Maastricht these days, unsure of when I’ll ever be back, and remembering, as if it were just yesterday, our first bike ride through the neighborhood nearly 2 years ago.
I’m not in denial about the different that’s coming. This weekend the man who bought our bed will come to pick it up. I could have told him to only take it once we’ve left the house, but instead I decided it’s time.
It’s time to start getting uncomfortable.
To not only let go of our stuff, but to toss out our plans, and empty our hearts and learn to trust in Him alone…again.
I stumble upon my lack of trust when the things around me loosen from my grip, be it my schedule, my dreams, my possessions, my home, or my family. Take away the bed we’ve slept on for a couple of years and suddenly I’m faced with how little I actually rely on God.
As I rid myself of all the excessive clutter in my spaces and my soul these days, it becomes clear that I spend much of my life constructing an environment for myself and my family where the necessity of trusting God becomes obsolete and old-fashioned.
I forget the language and the culture that was embedded in me before the earth was created. A way of life that centered around one thing…
I exchange simple, childlike trust for a sophisticated and sturdy adult kind. A trust that’s still calculated, worried, and fearful. A trust that has problems stepping forward, letting go, and taking the jump into my Papa’s arms.
Once I could sleep anywhere, in my dad’s backpack as he carried me along for hiking trips, on a floor in a sleeping bag at a friend’s house, or curled up on the grass under the stars, and now I want the perfect mattress with a solid bed frame, in a quiet room, with elegant sheets and a duvet to cover me.
I’m not saying we should all get rid of our beds, but I am becoming aware as I grow older that a necessary trust in God silently erodes beneath the nice stuff of life- the comfortable office, the regular salary, or possessions and plans- and eventually I grow more familiar with depending on myself rather than Him.
As I mine through our belongings and memories this week, rummaging through closets and rearranging our rooms, there’s one thing that keeps surfacing that I cannot seem to leave behind, an untamed trust that carried me here in the first place.
A trust that says even if I were to let go of it all, God would be enough.
Even when I don’t know what lies ahead, I can count on God being there.
Even in shifting times and changing plans, God remains faithful to His promises.
Even when I carry nothing with me, but stuffed suitcases, He will provide.
A wild trust rises up out of the dust, the more I give away and pack up and let go. The boxes and bags I fill stack tall, becoming the pillars of a reclaimed trust in God…
I will never need anything but Him in this life.
When God is telling us to move, to let go, to accept change, to release our dreams or plans, He is actually inviting us to re-discover an undomesticated kind of trust in Him, that feels foolish, but fits us perfectly.
In this act of moving, packing up and leaving behind, even important things that we thought we couldn’t live without, we are also building pillars that hold open a door. Slowly, our goodbyes transform into a gateway for us to experience the wide open spaces of God’s goodness and grace.
Hearts that once felt unsettled by the constant ebb and flow of life, now stand firm in victory, rest, worship, and thanksgiving.
As I give our bed away this weekend, I joyfully walk between the pillars and into a new place of trust. Every change in life brings tears to my eyes, but I look deep into His eyes and I know I’ll be okay.
It’s time to get uncomfortable again, I whisper.
Inspired by: 2 Chronicles 20, Matthew 14:22-33, Acts 17:28-29,
How have some of your goodbyes transformed into unexpected gateways?
What does untamed trust look like for you right now?