What to Do, When You’re Hanging Onto Life by a Thin Thread {the rest of the story}

You move, I said.

You move forward.into.life.

And the only way you do that is to let go.


I’ve been clawing my way through life, living at breakneck speed, furiously tearing at life.

My thin thread was once a thick rope, but I’ve lived the life right out of it, desperate to get everything I can, racing.

Racing against time.

But the thing is?

Time always wins. The hands on the clock never move slower or faster.

Time is relentless.

And the only way you stop racing and you start living is to let go.

Let go and let God, take the small offerings of a small life to make the world a little brighter, happier and more beautiful for someone else.

To make a difference.

To matter.

The truth is?

The people God uses for bigger things are the faithful in the small things. 

And the faithful are the people who rule.

All of us exit childhood and enter into life with expectations. We’re going to live a beautiful life.

The commencement of our adulthood is framed with the knowledge that life will not always be perfect or smooth sailing, but sometimes just plain down hard.

We know, but we have no idea.

No idea how frustrating it will be to spend most of our life doing the common thing of living. We don’t really get it — that our most realistic expectations about reality are still naïvely romantic.

No idea how very, very little control we have over our destiny. This, you cannot comprehend, until you experience the sifting that comes with the stripping bare of your deepest dream.

No idea how we will flounder, the innovative, energetic, exciting, adventurous, “I’ve-got-this” people that we are. We’ve got dreams, man. Ambitions.

No idea the pain that will come with the experience of realizing that a Christ-centered life does not always equal earthly supreme happiness.

No idea that sometimes when the real knowing comes, you will feel cheated.

When it comes, when real life knocks and you open the door to a suffering you never imagined and you can’t do a thing about it –

the only thing that you can do, to ever stay alive and keep breathing, is to open the door wider and surrender yourself to the beautiful reality of what it means to be alive and belong to God. 

You move forward into life, letting go of that last strand in your rope, because God’s had this one the whole time and all of your wrangling has just strangled the life right out of living.

It feels like defeat, but this is when you fully engage.

“The time has come for us to quit playing chess with God over our lives… The One who created you and set all those loves and gifts in your heart, the One who has shaped all of your life experiences (including the ones that seem to make no sense), this God has prepared a place for you that is a more than perfect fit for all your gifts and quirks and personality traits – even those you don’t know you have. Christ is not joking when he says that we shall inherit the Kingdom prepared for us and shall reign with Him forever.”*

Most of life is endless monotony and the people who want more will suffer.

At some point in life, we all will come face to face with the stark reality of what being alive and human in an imperfect world means and the moment we embrace it is the moment we awaken, coming alive to what it means to live.

This is about God. We’ve said it and we’ve known it in philosophy, but when our human expectations shatter and we’re feeling ambushed, we realize it in our hearts.

This is about God. It always has been and always will be.

His redemption is at work, and for you, the one just barely hanging on?

The truest surrender is the full embrace of the life you are called to live today.

And your greatest expectations pale in comparison to the beautiful plan He has for you – the one who dares to give up all in faith.

*Quotation from “The Journey of Desire” by John Eldridge.


4 thoughts on “What to Do, When You’re Hanging Onto Life by a Thin Thread {the rest of the story}

  1. This is beautifully written. Thank you so much for sharing! I have been a ‘hopeless romantic’ in oh, so many things in my short, little life. And one, by one, as dreams got crushed into powder at my feet, I have come to love deeply the One who gives me Life abundant! He knows exactly which things to ask for so that I love Him with my all… and need Him completely.
    God bless you.
    ~Marcia Zimmerman

  2. Marcia,

    God bless you! This journey of life often does not make sense to us small human beings, but by the grace of God we keep going in faith and with every step we come to know more fully who He is, who we are, and the what the point of it all really is.

    Keep loving Him!

  3. I need to read this again and again. I know about wrangling and strangling and am often scared of surrender. Your words are clarifying and convicting.

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