Holes Are For Planting, Not Covering

Sometimes things happen that we wish didn’t. Sometimes, the things that happen leave gaping holes in our souls, or our lives, that we don’t know what to do with. If you’re reading this blog, chances are high that you’ve had some holes in your past – or maybe you have some still.

Holes are eyesores. The tend to mar an otherwise acceptable setting, and so the natural tendency is to want to do something about them.

If your dog, for instance, digs a giant hole in your back yard, you would likely shovel the dirt back in and maybe find a way to make sure he doesn’t do it again. A fence would go up, cayenne pepper would be sprinkled over the dirt (a helpful trick my cousin used with her 4 dogs), or some sort of action would be taken to fix what had been marred. Getting back to normal – to what things looked like before – is usually the aim, because most people with nice yards have invested time, money and vision into making them what they are.

We, too, have invested much into our lives, trying to make them more comfortable, more pleasurable, more of what we want them to be. When something happens that leaves a devastating hole, we tend to grieve over what’s been lost, and get to work trying to find some way to fix it. We want things to return to what they were, before the hole was dug.

But sometimes, no matter how many times we attempt to fill the holes, to cover them up and make everything okay again, we find ourselves repeatedly staring into the face of a pit. And eventually, the holes in our lives beg the question that beckons us to face the reality we are always running from: how do I embrace what I cannot control?

By embrace, I don’t mean we leave it as it is and learn to move around it. We don’t just throw our hands up and leave the hole in the ground, or the heart, or the marriage. But neither do we continue to try to cover it up.

I was thinking recently about the way so many things have come about in my life, how I have so much to be thankful for that I never could or would have chosen on my own. My plans looked different than what I’m living in now. And much of what has grown into what I now love began with a giant hole.

Over long years of patient tug-of-war (God, of course, being the patient one), I began to realize that the holes were places where God wanted to plant something new, something I didn’t know was missing. Where I was content to shovel dirt over the chasms or learn to live with them as they were, He was intending to give them new purpose. And out of those places that once were gouges in my soul, He has grown fruit that revives the souls of many. It is no longer just my life, or my story, or my garden, or my devastation. It is the place He has transformed, to welcome others into a space where ugly became beautiful and despair became a flowering tree of hope.

It is the place where I’ve learned that messy isn’t the end of the story, that wounds are only an invitation to transformation, and that acceptance means what I wanted and what I’ve known are being reborn and repurposed for something more than I can see.

I can’t control the things I wish had never happened. But I have laid that desire in the holes I’ve learned to embrace. God is a master gardener, and He is in the process of turning what’s been marred into what is glorious. I am aware now that, every time I find myself facing another hole, I have a choice. I can mourn over and cling to what I had dreamt for myself, and remain stuck in a place that is never transformed. Or I can mourn over what’s been lost, determine to let it go, and sow into the new purpose God has for that space in my life.

On this side of the holes, there is no contest. I have seen too much goodness. I have experienced too much wonder. I have held too much beauty in the broken places. I have surrendered my life, unfair sufferings and all, and I have chosen to watch in amazement as He does what He does best. He repurposes my pain and He fills my empty spaces with beauty I could not produce in my wildest imagination.

He wants to do the same for you.

Dear Woman of Breakthrough, are there holes in your soul? Has the ground of your life been dug up and left bare? Are there hopes and dreams you had planted, which have been uprooted and destroyed? I know the difficulty of processing through such disappointment and wreckage. But I also know the hand of God, and His heart to replace what has been lost with something so much greater. I know there is real joy on the other side of repurposing the holes.

Can you summon the courage to let go of what was comfortable, familiar, and chosen, in order to embrace what is new, unimaginable and hand-picked by the One Who made you with so much care? If your heart can’t seem to find what’s needed for that kind of leap, all you have to do is ask. God will give you the courage you need. He will give you the strength to hope again, and the clarity to plant in a new season, for a new vision, right alongside His powerful and loving hand.

He is bringing new things to life, in you and all around you! So, if you dare, rejoice in what is still to come!

{Photo images courtesy of http://www.pixabay.com}

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