Searching for Hope When It All Feels Wasted

I've got a list of everything I think ... I hope ... my retirement will be. I'm searching for hope that my life will get better. On my terms. But God is showing me that it's not all about me. I'm finding my searching is leading back to Him.

The search is on.

You don’t know me, but I know you won’t believe it when I tell you, in three years, we will retire. I’m not sure I believe it. Of course, we’re not old enough for that. Well, he is, but me?

We surf Zillow looking at homes, discovering we can only afford the Fixer Upper’s before Chip and Jo-Jo transform them.

I envision my days spending more time with the granddaughter, weekend family suppers and walks on the beach anytime we choose, with hours to spend with my camera or writing. I’ve started a written list of what will be different in retirement:

We will live closer to our family.
We can be on similar schedules.
I can wear jeans anytime I want, including to church.
I will never have to wear pantyhose again. Or heels.
Travel will be to places we get to decide, when we decide. Mostly.

I’m searching for hope that life will be better.
On my terms.

Left up to me, I’d retire today. I’m tired. I’m not sure I have the emotional reserves needed to do this anymore. The cost of caring seems to get higher every day.

I’m tired of keeping up the morale.
Of the pats on the backs and ‘atta boys.

I’m tired of being used and sucked up.
Tired of addictions and broken families.

I’m tired of organizational bureaucracy.
Tired of dressing a prescribed way.

I’m tired of explaining things.
Tired of explaining we’re a church.

I’m tired of the rules and the Minute Book that holds these rules.

I’m tired of the language of it all.

I’m not ready to retire from life, only from this life. It’s worn me down or I’ve worn myself down not searching for the right thing: grace in His call.

When I look at my written lists, I see something I’d rather not: I see me. It’s all about me. It’s about how I want to live life.

Retirement is my way out. Retirement is my way.

I’m searching for cheap grace and easy discipleship. I’m looking for a faith without cost.

Anyone who wants to be my follower must love me far more than he does his own father, mother, wife, children, brothers, or sisters — yes, more than his own life —otherwise he cannot be my disciple. And no one can be my disciple who does not carry his own cross and follow me. But don’t begin until you count the cost.  Luke 14:26-28a

There’s nothing wrong with the things on my list. There’s nothing wrong with living near family or not ever wearing pantyhose again.

What’s wrong is that I’m searching for comfort instead of Jesus.

My search is answered in this old hymn:

Turn your eyes upon Jesus
Look full in His wonderful face
And the things of Earth will grow strangely dim
In the light of His glory and grace

When I look at my written lists, I see something I'd rather not: I see me.Click To Tweet

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debbie hudsonDebbie is a beach-loving South Florida girl who grew up in the church but learned about grace from an ever-changing group of men in recovery. She likes her tea sweet, music loud and winters balmy. Follow along on on her blog or Facebook.

 

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Here at Middle Places we LOVE a good story. Everybody is making their way through the middle of something and we'd love to hear about yours. Please send an email to editor@middleplaces.com or check out our Contact page if you'd like to share your story with us and our readers.
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Here at Middle Places we LOVE a good story. Everybody is making their way through the middle of something and we'd love to hear about yours. Please send an email to editor@middleplaces.com or check out our Contact page if you'd like to share your story with us and our readers.

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