Snapshots and grace.

I vividly remember sitting on the bathroom floor with its dated linoleum designs, knees hugged to my chest, reading through the text messages that revealed my then-boyfriend's infidelity. I could actually hear my heart pounding, or it at least felt like I could. I vacillated between anger and sadness and panic, yet I continued to read, read, read, torturing myself with information as chills ran up and down my back and arms.

I can remember, in that moment, my 20-year-old self pleading with God. This boy and I were consistently on-again, off-again. I had been asking God for several weeks for a "sign" I should end the relationship... Was this that sign?

I realize now how stupid this all sounds... I can look at it objectively now that I'm not in it, now that I'm not sitting on that impossibly hard bathroom floor snooping through text messages while my boyfriend slept in the adjacent room. There was this recurring thought, "I wish I could look five or ten years into the future and just see a snapshot of my life... know whether or not we will stay together. That way I know what to do now." As if somehow this future snapshot could alleviate the pain tearing through my chest, somehow make sense of the rejection I was facing.

At that point I was in college, majoring in Biology and Chemistry, with intentions of applying to med school. I had good grades, was waiting tables to pay my rent and tuition and saw myself becoming a doctor so I could travel and work wherever I wanted. I had plans, y'all. I was going places. I didn't need anyone. I just needed to impress everyone.

I can't help but think as I, muffin-topped and all, sit today on my throne of laundry, library books and duplos at my feet, that had I really been given a snapshot of this moment of my life, it likely wouldn't have given me the comfort I was so desperately craving. Because, let's face it, how many of us really end up living the life we thought we would? Twenty-year-old me saw myself as never having children or getting married, traveling the world, staying very thin (priorities, y'all).

My sweet, dear friend's husband left her four years ago with three small children. She and I regularly have the conversation of how her life is not at all how she imagined it would be and, had she known it would end up this way, she probably would have tapped out years ago.

But that's the thing about grace, right? We are asking God for our daily bread. Not tomorrow's bread. There isn't grace for tomorrow or for that imaginary situation you've concocted in your head (usually at 2 AM). There isn't yet grace for the loss of a spouse or crumbling marriage or natural disaster that takes your home. There is grace for today. For the argument with your four-year-old. For the pounding headache. For the empty coffee tin (speaking from experience here). That's what my daily bread is TODAY. I cannot rely on a fuzzy snapshot from ten years in the future for comfort. Because there isn't grace for that yet. Forty-year-old me will have to rely on God for different things than thirty-year-old me does. And, honestly, for that I am grateful.


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