In Facebook, I’ve posted a picture of pressing petals into a book to preserve an important memory as I usually do in high school. However, I leave out details like who gave the beautiful yellow bouquet of roses and the story behind it. As a result, many have assumed (or I have assumed that they have assumed) that it came from someone romantically special. I would most probably share the same thoughts when I see a bouquet of flowers in my News Feed.
I do not bother to explain the story behind the flowers as it has been my practice to be discreet in giving out details of my personal life especially in social media. Ironically however, I pour out story after stories of my inner thoughts here in WordPress (like what I will do now).
So, it happened to be my birth month this October. Yes, not April 1 (then say: April Fool’s!) nor April 31 (then see if you will check your calendar) as I usually tell strangers and new friends.
I end up in solitary confinement of me, my rumbling emotion and my ever stiff companion—bed, pillows and blanket.
Being in a different country, new community and new set of friends, no one knows
that it is my birthday except for my family and a too few friends. As a result, there were two or three greetings on Facebook walls; some messages from closest friends; few calls to my family back home; and LOTS OF SILENCE.
The night before my birthday, I am supposed to meet a friend and celebrate in their house but I was not really in the mood and wanted to be alone. Yet deep inside, I’m craving for company. Grand expression of love. Surprises, greetings and smiles.
On the day of my birthday is a usual Church service packed with discipleship meet-up and ministry roles.
After Church service, I agreed to meet my friend that I supposed to meet the night before. (By the way, I am grateful for this beautiful friend’s grace and love because although I did not show up last night, there she was, still inviting me over.) I ended up waiting for 1 to 2 hours before we meet because they are still on a cruise-yes, a cruise that I could have experienced as well if I haven’t been so caught up with myselp the other night. Ha!
That 2 hours of waiting time invited feelings of loneliness and agony. My friends are gone after our discipleship meet-up and I was left roaming around the mall clueless where to go and wait. I stayed in the wash room and confined inside the cubicle. There I read this passage from Psalm 37 and cried a river.
23The Lord makes firm the steps
of the one who delights in him;
24 though he may stumble, he will not fall,
for the Lord upholds him with his hand
The wonders of how God will meet you in the middle of your loneliness, doubt and agony—if you allow Him to. The verses spoke to my heart and hit a nail right in my head. The verse were the very words of affirmation, grand expression of love and a very personal message from God that I am longing for. He truly knows how to speak validation and affirmations to me in ways more than what I expect.
It crumbled all the fears like scales falling off my chest.
It melted all the loneliness that starts encapsulating my heart.
It answers my very question that day: “Will you hold my hand?”
Yes He does. And it’s all that matters.
Back to the Facebook post I made just yesterday, it was an extension of God’s expression of grandiose love through the very people I trust and choose to share lives. I’ve spilled my birth-date a week before. So we meet-up last night to celebrate the birthdays of two beautiful ladies in the group—plus myself.
They gave us a cake and each of us has a bouquet of yellow roses! Then they gave some sweet messages and prayed for us shortly after.
In my opinion (that sometimes stinks), the meet-up was mostly awkward and silent. Yet it was equally peaceful and joyful. For it is composed of a group of ladies with different personalities that choose to show up and do not give up meeting together; gather around and celebrate the birthdays of their new found friends.
I sit in the chair with them and let the awkwardness fade. I embrace the silence. I look beyond their smiles and allowed myself to be loved by these people. I know that in time, slowly and surely, I will be able to put off the invisible mask I am unconsciously wearing—weary and conscious of what they think about me; wondering if I can be as true to these people as I am to some few close friends who are not around.
I look forward to more celebrations with them and a few cries if we may.
Truly, the Lord upholds me with his right hand. And he does a couple of significant things other than cupping my face, wiping my tears and holding my hand. He unwrapped a family before me that I have yet to enjoy as I find my way out of despair. I don’t have to understand. For he is with me and holding me all the way—HHWW PSSP (Holding Hands While Walking—Pa-Sway-Sway Pa). 🙂
I believe that he will keep on unwrapping gifts beyond what I can ever ask or imagined. But wait—I keep my eyes fixed on the Giver of the gifts instead. Everything else will just be an overflow of who He really is.
I’ve blabbered enough. If you are going through some tough times, I pray that you will be encouraged and will choose to fight a good fight of faith. It is never easy. That’s why we need Jesus’ unfailing and unconditional love to help us through. Allow Him to help you today.