hard to get

“I can’t see how you’re leading me, unless you’ve led me here

To where I’m lost enough to let myself be led

And you said you’ve been here all along I guess

it’s just your ways and you are just plain hard to get”

Hard to Get by Rich Mullins

Rich wrote those words shortly before he died in 1998. He never got to see them formally recorded or released to the world. While he didn’t know about Coronavirus or the war in Iraq or the economic troubles in 2008, his words in this song tell us that he did know struggle – and he knew it that it could lead him to the gospel.

In the past month, our world has paused in such dramatic way. We are in a situation we would’ve shrugged off as impossible (or at least improbable) just a couple short months ago. Everything has slowed down. We’re more isolated and more collectively anxious than we have experienced during my lifetime. And we are all dealing with this anxiety and fear in our own dramatically different ways.

Where does your anxiety take you? How have you been trying to survive it? Have you been ranting, annoyed, short-fused and blaming, frustrated with the rules and restrictions? Have you been sad, overwhelmed, fearful, playing out all the ways this could go wrong? Or have you buried your head in the sand and worked to ignore it all, writing it off as hysteria and media hype? If you’re like me you’ve done all of that and more! And that makes sense. It’s terribly uncomfortable to be this out of control – and we still have no end in sight. It’s a lot for any person to bear.

I love Rich’s line “I can’t see how you’re leading me unless you’ve led me here to where I’m lost enough to let myself be led.” Typically, I protest, avoid, fight, ignore, and do all the things to hide from my own dependence, from allowing myself to be led. But this thing is so large that I can’t pretend I’m in charge, which means maybe I’ll let myself follow His lead. And, hard as it is to believe, maybe He will take me (and this world) exactly where He wants – even if I can’t understand it.

The moments I feel the freest are when I allow myself to be where I am, express it (the anger, sadness, avoiding, etc.), and let it take me to Jesus. It comes in moments of grief, frustration, beauty, and the moments I spend with others who are willing to express those things with me. Music is a constant in my home these days and songs like Rich’s create space for my heart to be somewhat still. The beauty of a relational God is that He wants to be with us – wherever that is. When my inability to stand alone takes me to dependence on the one who can weather all things, I can rest. What a strange gift.

Noelle joined the Barnabas Center in May of 2018. She has a Bachelors of Arts in Psychology from Berry College in Rome, GA and a Masters of Science in Counseling from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. Previously she has worked with college age individuals and adults dealing with anxiety, depression, self-harm, identity issues, relationship concerns, and challenges related to life transitions. She is passionate about walking with individuals as they face the struggles of life and the questions that come from living in a broken world.

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