removed

Like most people I spend a good amount of my time trying to obtain things.
more clothes.
more friends.
more attention.
more money.
more followers.

But the truth is I am much better at losing things.
my keys.
my id.
my wallet.
my phone.
my debit card. 
my patience.

Unless we are talking about weight...most of us would much rather gain than lose. Add more to our resume or closets than take away. Loss scares us. We do all kinds of things to avoid it at all costs.

I re-read a book the other night and what caught my attention this time was the idea of loss being more meaningful than gaining. (Drops Like Stars)
I've read the book at least four times but what I was drawn to this time was his description of sculpting.
That all the artist has to do is remove.
Lose.
That the beauty is in there all along and someone just has to take the time to carve it out.
To find it.
To free it.
To let everyone else see what lies underneath.

Let's be honest. Most of us spend more time trying to cover up than we do revealing.  At least, I do.
It is easier. It is safer. I worry less about breaking.
But it isn't art. It isn't beautiful. It isn't even close.

I do not know loss like some people I know.
I have never lost a parent or a sibling.
or God forbid a child.
My losses are small ones.
my dog.
contracts with publishers.
chances I let slip through my fingers.
long ago boyfriends.
my pride.
my absolutes.
my control.
friendships.
my temper.
and even occasionally my faith.
And every time I lose something that I wanted to keep a tight hold of,  it leaves behind this giant gap. A hole that I quickly try to fill with anything. Books. Chips and salsa. Binge watching on netflicks. People. Running mile after mile hoping to leave the hurt and loss behind.

And do you knowwhat is NOT in the bible? Not even once. Something about a God-filled hole in our hearts that only He can fill. I have always felt a void. An ache. Like something is missing. And maybe it is because I had youth director after youth director tell me about this God-sized hole we were created with. Which led me to believe that if I still feel it, then maybe I don’t know God in the right context. That I am doing it wrong. That I don’t have enough faith. 

I suspect that all that isn't true. That we ache, because we WERE in fact made for more. That we are supposed to long for more. But maybe the kind of more we were made for comes from less.
I do not think that the God who formed us from the dust, breathed his very spirit into us and then left this giant hole in our hearts hoping one day we will ask him to move in there. That right until that moment we tried to fill with girl scout cookies or wine or worse instead. And then when we said the right words, the he slides in and fills us up. He pulls a Jerry McGuire and completes us. 

God is not in the gaps.
He has always been about wholeness.
The ache we feel is maybe something we need to shed rather than something we need to fill.
Little by Little.
He is like the sculpture. The beautiful part —that was there all along.

All we have to do is remove.
the stuff that gets in the way.
the lies that sometimes are louder than the truth.
the ugly.
the unnecessary.
the excess.
even the good parts that weren't meant to be in the masterpiece.

And I hate the carving.
Loss, even minor ones, seem to flatten me.
Removal is painful.
Good art always is.

But I somehow feel a bit lighter remembering that he has always been there.
Waiting.
To show himself more fully.

In me.


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