“For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven” – Ecclesiastes 3:1
I let go of many things moving to Seattle almost a year ago. I said, “Goodbye,” to many friendships, severing ties with some people, fully knowing I would never see many of them again. I maintained the important relationships and continue to be blessed by their presence in my life, albeit distant and sporadic in communication. After moving so many times in my adult life, I have learned the art of letting go and moving on. Maybe I learned this art all too well?
Since coming to the Emerald City and starting this work, I have learned much, gained much, and lost much. This work I am doing is costing me greatly. It is costing me my life.
In protecting my personal growth and process during my time at The Seattle School, I recently released my grip on two deeply meaningful relationships in my life. I let both of these relationships go, with open hands. I stopped chasing, I stopped pursuing, and I stepped back completely. I let go of expectations and assumptions, and distanced myself in the hope that growth would occur in the separation and time apart. Simply put…
It was time for me to move on.
God was yearning to heal my heart, but this would never happen if I held onto the band-aids that were covering a very deep, gaping hole in my heart.
One of these relationships left without a trace and without a word. The other stuck around and made it abundantly and beautifully clear that they were still there, standing at the door, waiting for me to open it whenever I was ready.
Both of these responses surprised me.
The lost relationship surprised me in the way I was treated after I stepped away. You never know how someone feels about you until you say, “Goodbye.” It turns out, I didn’t mean a whole lot to them after all. I didn’t mean enough for them to pursue or wait for me. I didn’t mean enough for them to even notice I was gone. They didn’t care enough to hold on.
They didn’t want me.
The other surprised me with the amount of care I didn’t know they had for me. I didn’t know I meant so much to them. I didn’t know I was worthy of their fight for me. I didn’t know I was loved so deeply that breaking relationship wasn’t an option.
They cared enough to wait.
Letting go of something doesn’t always mean the other will go away…but, sometimes it does.
As much as I rejoice over a relationship that is on pause, my heart is deeply grieving the relationship that is lost. Tearful mornings and sorrowful evenings sandwich my day with lament and heartache. The prophet in me makes it easy to find the beauty and hope in suffering, to imagine the possibilities of a beautiful and bright future ahead. Yet to fully heal from this lost relationship, I must allow myself to forgo hope and stick with sorrow, at least for a time. Grieving takes time and time heals all wounds, so as I continue this journey, I am savoring each moment of sadness, for each moment brings me closer to healing.
My heart is broken in two places: relationship lost and the realization that I am not wanted. I am not worthy of pursuit, which I so deeply crave. I yearn to be pursued, but the only way this void in my heart can be healed is to be pursued by the healing One; the One who chases after me with ferocious tenacity; the One who never fails at wooing my heart and turning brokenness into beauty.
This relationship lost may not want me, but I have an eternal Father who does.
“Be patient, then, brothers and sisters, until the Lord’s coming. See how the farmer waits for the land to yield its valuable crop, patiently waiting for the autumn and spring rains. You too, be patient and stand firm, because the Lord’s coming is near.” – James 5:7-8