• Dana L. Butler

When the Waiting Might Possibly Never End

And if I’m honest, even as I sit to write, I’m not sure what will come out.

What I do know, though, is that sitting in Panera this Friday morning, opening up my WordPress dashboard brings up tears that burn the backs of my eyes, and that almost always means some facet of my heart is ready to be unearthed, to be given language.

The end of 31 days found me tired in the best way possible. I was poured out, spent, and I knew this was the way I should feel. The result of being brought to the end of myself… and then stretched even further.

So I’ve taken a couple of naps this week, and I’ve filled journal pages. I’ve been up at night with sick kids. I’ve read books, written songs {even recorded one}, and played my guitar purely for the joy of playing. And I’ve re-fallen in love with my piano, I think.

I’ve stared at the wall a bit, too. And at the trees, which, here in KC, are nothing short of spectacular these days. I can’t stop photographing them. There’s something about them that fills my heart with a mixture of gratitude and longing, and while my brain can’t quite make all the connections to tell you precisely why, I know their beauty moves me. That it breathes into a deep unto deep cavern of my soul.

So my eyes and heart feast on rich autumn color… and on the moon.

It’s full the last couple days, and I can’t get enough. Even more than the trees, the moon moves my heart toward longing. Draws my soul’s gaze to Him: to Majesty and Holiness and Eternity. To the type of beauty that rearranges and remakes me inside. The brilliant Presence I was made to sit in, to take into myself and become a part of, day-in, day-out, for always.

It’s a glory-to-glory kind of beauty.

It transfigures. He transfigures.

I’ve had good days this week. Days my truest self has come out uninhibited, days I know that Jesus has reached out from inside me and touched deep places of others’ hearts. Those days are all at once exhilarating and terrifying, and they propel me to lean, lean, lean into the One who covers and defines me.

I’ve had hard days too — days which are no less good, in their own right, but days in which I’ve found myself profoundly in touch with my frailty. Days I’ve told my husband, “I think I’m a little depressed, babe.”

I’m not generally prone to melancholy, not even a little. But these final (or hopefully final) days of our season of waiting to move are feeling so long, y’all.

Oh, they are SO long.

And even though all signs still point toward a relatively smooth transition to Colorado here in another 3 – 5 weeks, I find myself off and on afraid that something will go wrong and the contract on our house will fall through again.

And we are aching, aching to be with family and friends, and with our church family there.

Speaking for myself, leading those precious hearts in worship — being a vessel to facilitate intimate encounter with the One who adores them so purely and fiercely — it’s been a burden of intercession I’ve carried before the Lord with varying degrees of intensity for the entire going-on-7 years we’ve been away from Littleton.

This morning I’m remembering my pregnancy with Isaac, how the final weeks leading up to his birth found me easily discouraged. Feeling unbearably full inside, like maybe the weight of this precious gift would never come out and I’d end up crushed by it somehow.

I’m thinking this waiting feels reminiscent of that.

And while part of me is genuinely excited and anticipating all that Jesus is leading us into in Colorado, another part of me is grieving over the length of our waiting, and wondering if it might never. ever. end.

But, there are autumn colors. And cooler temperatures. And a moon that stirs my soul. And there are warm scarves and warm cuddles and warm meals around our table with beloved family and friends.

And there is the movement of the Spirit in my deep places — this holy burning that reminds me that even — and maybe especially — in all the waiting and the stretching, I am alive inside. Deeply alive. White-hot alive.

He is unearthing and birthing and His commitment to that never-ending process in my core — it’s what keeps me breathing through this season. And it’s what will continue to keep me, regardless of whether our move goes through as we hope and plan, or not.

It’s where the realest Hope is found — in Him inside of me. In glory-to-glory transfiguration. In more of Him, less of me, and this ever increasing fullness of life.

So I’ll keep watching the moon and the colors and leaning into all this abundant beauty. And He’ll keep on breathing on this burning heart.

And I’ll live wholly alive — a life of burning, fragrant worship before Him — frailty and all.

P.S. So excited to be sharing this post with my friends in Lisha and Kelli’s communities on Sunday and Monday.

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