Friday, February 25, 2011

If Your Toes are Touching the Edge of that Cliff....

 photo credit:  Ryan Price

I read something last night that spoke loudly, in megaphone fashion, to the center of my scared, unsure soul.  For all of you waiting on an adoption, for a foster care placement, direction for your future, that house to sell, a new one to buy, a job opportunity, a major life change, a move, a chance, a wife, a husband, or for God to give you the faith to take that next step, maybe these words will bring comfort to you as well.

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There's a place between here and there.  A piece of ground in the middle of take-off and landing.  A section of the unknown within beginning and ending.  You probably find yourself there from time to time.  It's the land known as Inbetween.


Inbetween is one of the most rugged places in life.  You aren't fully here, and you aren't fully there.  Your emotions and hopes are strewn across an endless list of possibilities.  Door knobs of wood, brass, and silver line the path, but which will open?  In the land of Inbetween, the paths are lined with sealed envelopes and foggy dreams.  Excitement runs forward and fears hold back.  And if you stay long enough, you feel the tremors of  your soul.


The land of Inbetween is downright scary.  It's a place of blind trust.  It's where the pedals of faith meet the narrow road of fortitude and where movement is demanded though there's no place to go.  The worst part of this land isn't the uncertainty or frustration that accompany it - it's that God likes it when you're there.


While He's no sadist, God loves the land of Inbetween.  He loves what it does to us.  He loves the humility and dependence it creates in our hearts, so He creates innumerable forks in life's road that swerve us into the land of Inbetween.  The unknowns of job, marriage, children, and home are the signs of this uncertain land.  At times, people are thrust into Inbetween by mishaps, accidents, sudden deaths, and even unexpected fortune.  Some people visit so many times they begin to wonder if it's life.  And they aren't far off.


So what will hold you steady when you walk through the terrain of Inbetween?  A recognition that Inbetween is God's design.  In one miraculous moment, the Creator of the universe placed you in the greatest Inbetween of all time - the place between the earthly creation and eternity.  Life's smaller lunges forward and backward are merely postcard reminders that there's something greater than this place we're visiting.


If you're in your own land of Inbetween, remember that God was the original designer of this journey.  You can get mad, scream, and even pout if you want. But it doesn't change the fact that you're merely passing through.  Everything else is Inbetween.  (from Deeper Walk, a Relevant Devotional Series)


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Can I be honest and say, "I'm kind of weary of our life always being so crazy?"  It seems like the last six years or so our lives have been in a constant state of Inbetween.  Foster care training, fostering, adoption, new jobs, a move to a foreign  country, houses selling, buying new homes...I'm weary.  Yet  here we are facing another move, different jobs, finding a place to live, and dealing with a pile of other unknowns.  I'm asking God today to give me a vision of heaven as we sit in this hard place of Inbetween once again.  May this uncertainty, this feeling of "not quite home or settled" turn my heart towards heaven and help me to see that this world is only the connecting flight, never the destination.  In that way the land of Inbetween, those often-times frustrating days of waiting, are an extension of God's kindness and grace towards us.  Small, zoomed-in pictures of our story that remind us of the bigger picture we will see once the camera zooms out and eternity is revealed.  Perhaps each trip to the land of Inbetween is a sweet gift, a heavenly reminder. Without them, maybe my eyes would not remember to look up and my heart would forget to hurt for heaven. May I learn to be more comfortable with the friction of living in one place while my heart longs for another.  Isn't that what faith is all about?  Waiting with anticipation for God to do something marvelous and for His Kingdom to come?

20 comments:

Anonymous said...

don't you know God smiles at us when we say we are "not quite home or settled." I think is what he fully intended...

Jana

Amber said...

So needed this today! I am crying. Not the same crying I was doing as I fell asleep last night about feeling like I am ALWAYS in in-between land...but a thankfulness for revealed grace!

Thank you for posting this!

T & T Livesay said...

If I find in myself a desire which this world can not satisfy I can only conclude that I was not made for this world .... that is my poor remembrance of a Clive Staples Lewis quote --- I have not felt settled for so long I forgot what settled feel like. It is hard and terrible and beautiful and wonderful all at once. We're glad you're here.

rachel said...

Love this....so needed it this morning. So spoke to where I am this morning. Thanks

Anonymous said...

thanks God for the timely reminder through one beautiful lady...thanks Heather for following the Spirit and posting this today!!!!!!!!!!!

~Shawna

Courtney said...

Thanks for this! We are currently in the "in-between" changing our parameters and waiting on a referral. This was so relevant to me today!

Kathleen said...

I needed this today...thank you for these words as we wait in our "in-between land". I feel like God is moving us into a new place, but while we wait, there is much to learn about His Character and who is is in our lives. We want to serve the fatherless in His name and we are praying that we will see in time what that is going to look like for our family.

Praying for your family...

mbs said...

Wow! The land of inbetween. I always yearn for a glimpse of God's Kairos vision when I am there, caught up in our minute chronos vision. (which is where I am right now, so like others have said - thank you so much for this!!)

Tara, I think I'll refer to him as Clive from now on. I love it!

Noelle Gonzalez said...

This is beautiful. I have, for about a year now called the land of inbetween the never-ending rollercoaster of life. I hopped back on that rollercoaster about 3 days ago and not only am I front row, but I'm ull speed ahead. The land of inbetween/rollercoaster makes me motionsick, and uneasy, but I have seen God do beautiful things to my soul during those times! Thank you for posting this! I may repost it in the near future if that is ok?


Praying for you guys as you move to HL and continue to love God's beautiful people in this land.

Marla Taviano said...

My feet are firmly planted in InbetweenLand right now. Thanks for this sweet encouragement.

Susan, wife of 1, mother of 4 said...

WOW, Heather, I thought you wrote the first part (in italics)! You are SO right, though. The life if "inbetween" is so hard, and yet so wonderful at the same time. God shows up so strong and so pure, and He does something to our souls while we are "inbetween". It's wonderful and marvelous and hard and horrible, all at the same time. Still, the wonderful part of it offsets the hard part and makes us remember that we really do live "inbetween" while here on this earth. I love how you rest in Him. I love how you ask Him for comfort. Keep posting and being real. It's wonderful!

Flower Patch Farmgirl said...

Uh - Are you some kind of a mind-reader?

I have never, ever considered that God likes me in the inbetween. Duh, right? It makes so much sense. But all the while I keep thinking, "Why's he leaving us here for so long?"

I'm a bit thick-headed about the most important things.

Bye.

Anonymous said...

Loved this post....blessed me beyond words.

Praying for your family.
A Lurker
InBetween Land, USA

:)

Joyce said...

I've lived much of my life in the 'in-between'...this spoke straight to my heart today. Thank you for sharing and blessings as you journey forward.

eliz@thesweetlife said...

Honest and spot-on post. Thank you for sharing your journey, from here to there and inbetween!

Sara Norton said...

Wow. You have no idea how the Lord is using you in a mighty way in my life right now. Thank you for being open, honest, and real. You are doing kingdom work! THANK YOU!

Elyce said...

A friend sent me this post and God sent it to her via you! Thank you so much. Doesn't change a thing, but sometimes it's nice to know someone else is sharing the journey! We have been fostering 6 years and our home on the market for 4. It's been a long in-between with so many heartbreaking goodbyes to sweet children we longed to have in our family. Getting ready for adoption number two and still the house hasn't sold. Trying to enjoy the journey and not just longing for the next destination. But too, I'm weary and crying out to God for mercy and peace.

bill said...

thanks.

KimBeau Hughes said...

Thank you. We are currently waiting to receive a child through adoption, and as you said, the unknown is so difficult. Thank you for your encouragement.

mamamargie said...

Love it! Thank you!