Music is a powerful thing.
This morning as I was putting on my makeup I put on a little old-school Jason Upton and instantly I was sitting on the floor in my closet doing the very same thing only it was 9 years ago. I could smell my closet and the summer breeze coming through under the door. I was overcome with those precious feeling of falling in love for the first time, the giddiness of knowing that I had met my husband-to-be. The feeling of utter abandonment to the Holy Spirit's leading. The nerves of knowing I was on the verge of the beginning of my life. The innocence of ministry that can only be found in someone who doesn't have the first clue what's to come.
I close my eyes and I can see the pictures lined up on the mirror on the back of my closet door. I can see the brand new size 8 dresses bought just days ago hanging to my left and the dozens of bridesmaids dresses hanging on the right. I can hear the phone ringing and feel my stomach flutter wondering if it was The Music Man. I had no worries, no real responsibilities, no mortgage, no kids, no mini-van. It was such a simple time.
I can see it as clearly as I can close my eyes and see my children today. It's like it was yesterday. It makes me so emotional to think of it now. Oh! to be able to recapture those innocent feelings of complete abandonment to the Spirit. To shake free from the worries of life. To feel like anything's possible for me. To have a passion for ministry that's not been tainted and a bit scarred.
My prayer remains the same as it was then... "Lord, have YOUR way in my life...take it, take all of it and do with it whatever YOU want!" But yet I don't feel like I am the same person. My innocence is gone. Responsibility and demands schedule my days now. I'm pulled a thousand different directions and it's hard to keep track of where I'm going.
I look different.
I act different.
I think different.
I am different.
On the one hand I'm glad. I've grown up so much. I have experienced things I wouldn't wish on anyone, but yet I've also had more joy and fulfillment in my life than I ever thought possible 9 years ago.
But on the other hand, I feel like such a different person from that young bride-to-be, that I often wonder who am I? Am I still that carefree, spontaneous, goofy girl and have I just lost sight of her along the way? Or am I this new more serious, slightly OCD, home-body of a woman who's called wife and mother? And is it possible to be both and still be me?
I wonder if in another 9 years I'll listen to a cd and it will transport me back in time to a day much like today. I'll hear my babies laughing and playing. I'll see the mounds of laundry and the choas of an upset toy box. Will I remember this time as fondly as I feel towards it right now as I live it? Will I look at myself today and think how innocent she was!? Where will I be in 9 years? What will God have brought me through? Will I be even more serious or will I be more spontaneous and carefree?
I still believe anything possible, but somehow this feels different. It feels more defined...more refined...
Refined by time.
Refined by life experience.
Refined by tradegy.
Refined by babies.
Refined by love.
Refined by God.
And I'm ok with that.