I must have been a really weird teenager. While other teens around me were rocking their ra-ra skirts, coloured jeans and scrunchies, digging into their ‘Dolly’ magazines and listening to Boys II Men, Guns’n’Roses and Metalicca, in 1991 I started collecting quotes that I liked.
Weird for a fourteen year old girl.
I was looking through a book that I kept these quotes in, and this one jumped out at me:
‘People can only love outside and can only kiss outside, but Mister God can kiss you right inside, so it’s different. Mister God ain’t like us; we are a little bit like Mister God, but not much yet’ – Mister God This Is Anna, by Fynn. (one of the cutest and most poignant books ever!)
I loved that as a fourteen year old, and I still love it, as a ah hem year old. I’m not exactly sure how or why it meant much to me as a teen – I certainly hadn’t been kissed then, but I guess I had a growing sense of the importance of my relationship with God. But now. It seems even more meaningful and profound, now that I have been and I am regularly ‘kissed on the outside’.
This past week my Spunky Hunk and I celebrated nineteen of marriage. Nineteen years, all in a row. There aren’t a lot of things in my life that I claim to be proud of – but my marriage (and my kids!) would feature in any brag book of mine…..We’re solid. We’re a team. We’re real and we laugh and we adventure and we grow, together.
But even in the closeness we share and the ability Michael has to be my rock and my anchor and all of that, things we certainly don’t take for granted, but we’ve cultivated and nurtured over these nineteen years, even in and through all of that, as much as I admire him and truly love him, there’s also a limit to how he can comfort me. Somehow, I knew before I took Michael’s hand in marriage, that only Mister God can kiss me right inside.
We’re now in the advent season. A season of great anticipation. Of waiting. Of watching. Of preparation. Some people I know have had great years, and are excited for what this Christmas season holds for them. Others around me are struggling. It’s been a tough year. They are dealing with massive hurts, incredible heartache, the need for physical and emotional healing, for great uncertainty surrounds them. So – how to encourage those in such a time as this? When the season feels like it calls for all things to be merry and bright, joyful and sparkly?
There’s so much I don’t know about life – of faith, of grief, of all of life’s big questions, but time and time again, I’ve been reminded of this great truth – this I do know – that God is in the waiting. And it’s in that waiting, that Mister God can kiss you right inside.
This song by Kristene DiMarco, Jeremy Riddle and Joel Taylor (‘Take Courage’ – Bethel Music) says it way better than I ever could:
Slow down, take time
Breath in He said
He’d reveal what’s to come
The thoughts in His mind
Always higher than mine
He’ll reveal all to come
Take courage my heart
Stay steadfast my soul
He’s in the waiting
He’s in the waiting
Hold onto your hope
As your triumph unfolds
He’s never failing
He’s never failing
Sing praise my soul
Find strength in joy
Let His Words lead you on
Do not forget His great faithfulness
He’ll finish all He’s begun
It’s really easy to lose heart, when you’re in the middle of a battle. The longer you have to wait for a diagnosis, or to see treatment begin to make a difference. It’s really easy to lose hope, when you feel isolated and distances between you and others keeps increasing. It’s really easy to lose faith when time doesn’t seem to make a difference. But.
But God. But God promises us that when we draw near to Him, He will draw near to us. I’ve seen God do this when friends of mine have lost their spouses, or when they’ve faced the ultimate of betrayals. The easier thing to do would be for them to have lost heart, lost hope and lost faith. But they haven’t. They have chosen to set their faces like flint, to turn their bruised and broken hearts towards God and to pour out their concerns, reveal their aches and rip off the bandages from their oozing wounds. And here’s the wonderful thing – God does come. As gently and as wonderfully and as thoroughly as only He can – He comes, and He kisses those wounds. It takes time and perseverance……..but He’s there. He’s in the waiting. I’ve seen this in some of the strongest and bravest people I know. They’ve come to Him in their waiting.
Whatever this Christmas season holds for you – take courage. He’s in the waiting. Only Mister God can kiss you on the inside.