when life disappoints…

I have a unsettling way of clinging to expectations.  I have some expectations of how people in my world around me will be/act/do, more expectations for myself and how I will be/act/do… and the most expectations for my God.  I have great expectations for God and what He will be/act/do for me.

This is one of those times when I hate looking at the heart mirror and seeing the reflection.  It’s not so lovely… in fact, it’s kinda ugly.

That ugly came out in an epic ugly cry the other night.  Deep sobs that cause your entire head to fill up so full that the only way to breathe is to gasp deep mouthfuls of oxygen between the tears.  It was truly that pathetic.

Six years ago, nine days before I turned 37, I had to have a complete hysterectomy.  Trust me… this was not a life expectation for me.  Instead, this journey has been one full of heartache, shame, hot flashes, extreme weight gain, and pain.  In two hours, my body went from one hormone extreme to the other and has never recuperated.  The alternative, though, was to bleed to death.   I only had a choice between the lesser of two evils.

I have fiercely clung, for six years, to the expectation that if I just be/act/do enough, God will restore me to my pre-surgery body… with more energy, less heat, less pain, more confidence, etc., etc.   If I just did enough, He would allow exercise to take the weight off, instead of just being something I endure.  The longer I let this expectation grow, the more fiercely I held on…

…until last week.  In His severe mercy, He is removing my death grip on this expectation.  

His expectations are not mine and my expectations only serve to get in the way of His good and pleasing work in my life.  

THIS… today… this is my life.  There is nothing He has not allowed and if I will only let go, all could be used for His glory.  

Though I despise this large, earthly tent that walks around with aching joints and hot flashes, it is the temple He has chosen, and questioning the “why?” of that only serves to feed the fire of disappointment, self-pity, and personal loathing.  It does nothing to further His Kingdom.

In the midst of the ugly cry and the “it’s not fair! routine” the other night… the sweet, still whisper of “Count.”

“but, I don’t want to.  I can count, and it changes nothing.  It’s still not fair.”

“Count gifts because when life disappoints, I make beauty from ashes.”

So, I count…

… for the man who held me through the night
… for the fact that in 18 years he’s never left
… for laughter and remembering 
… for faithfulness
… for this man who gave his word when he said “for better, for worse”

… for a day with the four I love the most
… for laughter as the mancub continues, and continues, and continues to fill his growing body
… for new birthday books
… for lunch out

… for the surprises
… and the smiles that deliver surprises
… for friends who listen and laugh
… for children who love

… for the greenest March ever!
… for the bird’s songs
… and the night peepers answers

… for the knowledge that His Word is Truth
… for the way He woes
… for the ways He loves
… for the eternity of His promises


care to join in with the gratitude community at Ann’s today and count the gifts in your life?

Categories 1000 Gifts, faith, gratitude, marriage

5 thoughts on “when life disappoints…

  1. Your list is beautiful and I love how you write!

  2. What an inspiring attitude you have found Heidi! "Count gifts because when life disappoints, I make beauty from ashes"… beautiful, love that! Your husband, so sweet and loving. Yay for new books! 🙂

  3. love how in the midst of the ugly cry you were laying it at His feet and He responded "Count…count!" and your counting led to such a beautiful list!

  4. The best time to count, I think, is when we are feeling down and upset. YOu know, when we really don't want to. Thanks for the reminder.

  5. continuing to count along with you … because there is always something to be thankful for …Splashing around in God's goodness today … Had to stop by and wade in this glorious place. Hope you don't mind if I stay a bit and let joy soak deep down.Splashin'Sarahhttp://justsarahdawn.blogspot.com/

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