Restore Us, O Lord

I finished The Flash a few days ago, crying my way through the last episode or two. My friends know this is extraordinary. I'm not a crier--as much as I might wish it!--and can count on one hand the movies or books I've cried for before. So, I sat at my kitchen table and cried for a tv show about super heroes. A bittersweet twist brought the tears coming, and that's all I'll say because my family hasn't quite caught up with me yet...

My emotions have already been called upon quite a lot in the past few weeks, though, so maybe that turn of events was tapping into the tears I want to shed about other things. Two weeks ago I was in Chattanooga, Tennessee attending a counseling conference with the theme of--wait for it!--emotions. It was a sweet and unfathomable gift to be able to fly across the country and visit the South for the first time, but I spent the entire weekend standing in front of a fire hose, taking little breaks to eat the best of Chattanooga's food.

Most of everything I learned that weekend is still tied up in my brown notebook, so worn the cover ripped off when I took it out of my bag in the airplane. We heard about grief, suffering, joy, worship, and lament. We spoke a lot about emotions that we often see as negative. It's easy to talk about things that bring joy and grace and love into our lives. Those feelings are often easier to deal with than hard things. But lament! That's something that in our society we usually try shove to the back of the cabinet. We're not okay with just being sad. I, especially, have to have a reason that I'm sad, and if I don't know why, I make reasons up. But it's okay to be sad for a time. To let myself feel things and not be quite sure why. 

So if it matters let it matter
If your heart's breaking let it ache
Catch those pieces as they scatter
Know your hurt is not in vain
/ Johnnyswim /

The other good good thing I took away and that lays prevalent on my mind, is that our emotions are not meant to be lived through alone. We're in this emotion thing together. I am an expressive person, my poker face sucks, I love to talk. But I think there's still a lot that I don't share, that people don't know about, that I don't even know about. One of my favorite things about the past fourteen months of college is the amount I have learned about myself. Introspection is good in all of that, and I've learned to listen to myself more than I ever have before, but the best part is talking life through with my friends, people who I know love me.

"Biblical love is rejoicing with those who rejoice and weeping with those who weep; it is sharing the experience of others." Winston Smith

If floods my heart to know I'm not alone. I have friends who buy me coffee and listen to my rush of words over the phone. Who pray for me, who keep me accountable, who give me hugs because I need them, even though I'm not a "huggy" person, who forgive me, and who walk with me through the seasons, sweet and long. They've helped remind me that it's okay to just "be." Not everything needs a reason. And I get to do the same for them! I get to celebrate with them, bemoan life's sucky-ness, give thanks for the Lord's provision, and live the full seasoned life God's given us. These are the people God has given me to share life with. The ones He has provided.

We sang Psalm 126 on the last day of the conference. It's a very favorite song of mine, and takes me right back to a humid summer night on the basketball court at Sacred Road every time I hear it. It's deeply appropriate to what I'm learning in this season. Rejoicing. Sowing the seeds. Weeping. Sowing the seeds. Awaiting the return of the Lord. "The world is good, the world is fallen, the world will be redeemed." May the name of the Lord be praised.

Our mouths they were filled, filled with laughter
Our tongues they were loosed, loosed with joy
Restore us, O Lord
Restore us, O Lord

Although we are weeping,
Lord, help us keep sowing
The seeds of Your Kingdom
For the day You will reap them.
Your sheaves we will carry;
Lord, please do not tarry.
All those who sow weeping will go out with songs of joy.

/ Bifrost Arts /


  1. This is beautiful. Thank you for sharing. (though you've got me worried about the Flash!)


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