Saturday, September 25, 2010

peaks and valleys, valleys and peaks...

I believe that life is made up of peaks and valleys and I also believe that there is one peak higher than the rest and probably a few valleys that are lower than the others. Lately I have found myself wondering if I've hit my peak. Was my life with Keith the highest point and is it all downhill (or at least lower peaks) from here? Surely the last year and a half is my lowest valley - Lord, I hope so, but I guess I won't know until my life is said and done.

As I wonder about these things I get stumped. As Christians, we are fortunate to have eternal hope - hope in an incredible time after this life is over, but also a continual hope in our lives here...that even when times are hard, they can get better. That there is more out there for us other than what we currently have, or are currently experiencing. However, I also know what it's like to have this hope, this unshakable belief that the Lord will provide in a certain manner, only to have it not turn out that way.

I believed, I mean really BELIEVED that the Lord would heal Keith here and that I would have my life back. But the Lord took him. I'm not mad or angry about that; I'm really not. If anything, I'm much happier with that scenario than if the Lord would have left Keith in the state he was in. I was living the worst case scenario every day and I am grateful to be out of it. I don't miss Keith any less, but my days are certainly easier now than they were for a really long time.

Anyway, my potential funk lies here: If I have hit my peak, then I'm okay with that. I have a LOT of great things to look back on and I lived a really great life with a really great guy. But I just want to know. Is there another peak out there? Should I hold out hope that there could be more out there for me? If it's just going to be Brooks and me then I'm fine with that. There is no doubt in my mind that we couldn't live a happy and productive life together. I have no problem building my hopes around the two of us and all that we can do with each other. What I don't want to happen is to hope in a future that might not ever come to pass. I know the joy that the hope brings, and I know the disappointment that comes when that hope is taken away. I'd rather not experience that twice. I don't want to look back when I'm 80 only to think, "Man, I wish I would have known that I had hit my peak when I was 28 or 29." So I don't know what to do. Do I hope in something that might not happen, or do I accept the fact that there is a good chance I've hit my peak and go from there?


Erin B. said...

It's interesting you chose this topic to write about, Judy, because one of my best friends just the other day asked how you were and then gazed far off in the distance with a dreamy look in her eyes and said, "I wonder what is next for her. She seems like the type of person where there is a lot in store for her in this life." I couldn't agree more. You'll have another peak. Many more peaks.

Bree said...

I believe that God has many more peaks for you to come. Of course they will be in different ways and with time God is going to heal that uncertainity and wonder. That was the peak for that season of your life. God has great things planned... Just thought Id share this with you Isaiah 43:18&19 " Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. 19 See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not percieve it?? I am making a way in the desert and a streams in the wasteland." I hope you dont take is as it might sound. I feel like your peak is coming. Maybe in the way you havent realized. Dont look back and think that was the only or the best peak. Things are coming. Not to take the place of Keith, but the peak for this season! I am praying for you pray that this week will be a revelation for you!

Anonymous said...

"Waiting is what you do until God is ready to surprise you!"

Sally, a sermon, right after my divorce.

Jennifer said...

Judy, I remember thinking some of the same things after my divorce was final and it was just Chaney and me. She was 9 months old and I was a single mom at 27. I really thought that that was it and while I accepted it, I held a tiny hope for more. I know our situations are completely different but I also know that our hope is in the same good God who has prosperous plans for each and everyone of His children (Jer 29:11). Even if it is a tiny hope you hold, cling to it because I can honestly tell you that now that I am on the other side of my own personal hell I am tremendously grateful for the little hopes I held on to because God used those to draw me close to Him.

Jennifer (White) Jenkinson

Cristina said...

Because God gave you new life (Brooks) in the valley of the shadow of death, you can be certain there will be many more peaks. He has far greater things planned for us than we can even think to ask or imagine.(Ephesians 3:20-21). Hope does not disappoint. If your hope was in Keith's healing, then of course you feel as if you lost hope. But if your hope is in Christ, then you can have certainty in the midst of your pain and sorrow that God will not let you down. This isn't the end of your story...its just another part of it. I'm praying that makes sense and that God reveals part of the larger story to you.

LaWanda said...

I believe God has great things for you, Judy. Like you, I so believed God was going to heal Keith's earthly body. One thing I noticed is that God did not take him until you were ready to release him...really ready...and God also worked during Keith's illness to solve many financial issues during his illness while also providing a wonderful job for you. I remembered back to when you had a glimpse of yourself in Dallas.

Over Keith's illness, through your writings, I watched a young woman deepen in her faith, understanding, and dependence on God. God will not forget you, and He will continue to use you. He gave you a great gift for communicating through the written word, and you have over 6,000 people who prayed for you and Keith and who have watched your spiritual progress.

I believe that if God leads you to do so, your online journal would be a wonderful book someday. All of us will have to be at that place at some point in our lives. The story of your journey through healing after Keith's journey could also be very helpful for others.

We never know exactly what God has in store for us, but we can be sure that He will be there for us. Throughout the Bible, when people went through great trials but remained faithful, God always brought them to a higher place.

My life has been hard for a long while, too, and it is that hope that God will never forsake us or leave us at our lowest point that sustains me. I know that you also have that hope, and I am continuing to pray for you and Brooks.

Habakkuk15b said...

Every experience in life prepares us ultimately for God's purpose for us. You have grown tremendously in your faith. You have courageously shared your journey. You have touched lives around the world. Sounds to me like God has paved the way for something really big...if you are willing to follow Him there.

Lisa Vandenberge said...

Thank you so much for doing this website Judy. Even thought I don't know you, I prayed for you and Keith for so long, and I was always wondering how you were doing. Anyway, I think you'll definitely have a lot more peaks, whether it's just you and Brooks or other people too. They will probably look a lot different that the one you've already experienced. This post made me think of a great little book called "Hinds Feet in High Places" by Hannah Hurnard. If you've never read it, I bet you would like it. May God continue to bless you abundantly, Lisa

Anonymous said...


I'm 45 now. Peaks a plenty to come. You just have to be on the lookout for them. Sometimes they're hard to see with all the crap in front of you.

This blog is incredible; Cory and I come to read living vicariously with God through you (half kidding)
Andy Postema