“Take me to the shouting grounds…
a prodigal lost was found…
I should be dead right now
but I am alive.
I just wanna see your face
You’re calling me from my grave
Take me to the shouting grounds…
it’s gonna get loud.”
To say the last few months have been hard would be an understatement.
Hard doesn’t begin.
If I told you the weight on my chest feels like a constipated elephant you might think I’m joking.
I am not.
When I say that Satan is an asshat I’m not just throwing around profanity.
I could give you a hundred reasons why my life has been stressful but I won’t because, dear friend, I know your list is probably longer. I know that you might look at my life and think I’ve got it dreamy. It’s all about perspective, I suppose.
I could talk of unfairness in life but that would imply I ever believed fairness was due.
I have never believed such nonsense. I’ve seen too much unfairness to too many who deserved way more fair than I.
Last week Crowder’s new album “American Prodigal” was released and my ears and my heart have latched on as if it was written just for me. It’s like David Crowder called someone up and said,”I’d really like to lay down some swamp rock with lyrics that punch Tam in the gut,” and a whole team of musicians joined in whole-heartedly.
The lyrics at the top of this page are from the song “Shouting Grounds” and I’ve had it on repeat all day. In between meetings and chapel and list making for the week I’ve hit REPEAT twenty times. At least.
I suppose I’m feeling the feels for it so deeply because I know that this is just a season. It’s a hard season but a season no less. I’ve spent 18 years in Houston so I’m grown accustomed to only two seasons, Summer and Not-Summer. When I season I’m not familiar with sneaks in I am lost in picking a wardrobe.
Lately my wardrobe has consisted of a plastic smile backed by a black heart.
But God is calling me out of this season. I am clinging to the faith that he won’t leave me here and that he wants me to pack my bags.
He doesn’t mind the black for a while but it’s not the color I was born to wear.
So I’m checking out of the office a little early today and going for a walk. It’s time to shout it out. It’s time to throw a few rocks and maybe a coffee mug. It’s time to smash some things, cry some tears, and give it to God. The world and all of it’s ways could knock you and I down a thousand times over, throw some dirt on our heads, and leave us for dead. That’s not our purpose. He’s calling us out. And “out” – wherever that is and whatever it looks like – will probably be different for you than it is for me but it’s where we need to be.
I’ve allowed fear and worry and doubt to fill my bones with an immense weight and I’ve decided that I’m tired. And done. So I’m giving it to God. It’s something I should’ve done months ago.
I type it like it’s an easy task and that when I’m done I’ll do some sort of dance with scarves. I wish that were true. I’ll hand it over and, if my life time pattern rings true again, I’ll wrestle long and hard to take it back. But the joy and peace come from knowing that God loves a prodigal son like me so much that he’ll engage me in the wrestling.
What are you wrestling today? Are you as tired as I am? Join me in the giving up process and we’ll get our scarves out and dance together.