And then sometimes….

This morning I posted this picture…

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He makes all things new. Beautiful morning. This butterfly spent so much time fluttering around the pond this morning. While there are caterpillars all over the rocks. Lovely reminder that what appears to be finished can actually be the beginning of something beautiful.

Right after I shared it, I looked down to watch the caterpillars and noticed that I had actually stepped on and squished a few as I was walking around the pond taking pictures. I actually thought (for a little too long) that I should take a picture of that and post it …. “and sometimes it is just the end. Finished. Done. Over. It’s messy and painful and its just finished. The end.”

I chose not too. Figured that isn’t anything anyone really wants to see on a Friday morning. Monday maybe, but not Friday. But I certainly felt it. The same way I felt the post about the butterfly… all things new.

And then I realized (it was early, no sleep and medicine head are my defense)… these caterpillars aren’t the kind that turn into beautiful butterflies. And then …I really began looking  and realized they were everywhere. Every. Where. Like skin crawling, reaching biblical plague swarms of caterpillars making their way to my pond.

Unfortunately what I didn’t realize then (see previous defense) is that they were heading into my pond to decimate my plants. I came home this evening and the plants, that just this morning, I had marveled that they had been able to survive the pond draining… eaten. By hundreds of caterpillars. I sat there completely stunned. And I thought… and then sometimes… the loss and destruction are so real it is almost impossible to see anything else. And then sometimes beautiful butterflies can’t cover up, make up for, hide, undo, the terrible loss and sadness that comes when something comes to kill and destroy. As always, my pond represents way more than just my pond…

For the second time in the span of several weeks I sat at the edge of my pond and cried. I cannot believe this is freaking happening… seriously, what. the. hell.  The lily that inspired this post and not giving up… pads eaten… the irises that haven’t bloomed yet…. eaten…. the first plant I bought two years ago… completely covered and being destroyed.

And then sometimes in the middle of all that … the Lord is compassionate and chooses to remind me that He is my El Shaddai…He alone knows what good He intends to work through all things; through painful endings, loss, sadness, destruction. All I can see is my pain and my loss. Fortunately, my trust, hope and faith is in my El Shaddai, God Almighty, the only one powerful enough to keep His promises.  People let us down, they disappoint us, things we don’t want to end, end, we experience sadness and loss, we struggle, we strive, we try to make things better, we suffer, we grieve, we hurt and we can’t make sense of or understand any of it. We live in a broken and fallen world full of broken people…all of us… every one of us… broken… so  we all experience pain and loss, we create it, contribute to it, inflict it upon one another, accidentally, on purpose, randomly, specifically, intentionally and unintentionally… it is there… and we can seldom make any sense of it. I can drive myself crazy trying or I can remember that sometimes it just is… and choose to believe the promise of my El Shaddai,the God Almighty, Creator of All Things, The Alpha and Omega… who promises to work all things for good… whether I can see it or not.  And choose to see that in the very middle of all of that, there is still laughter, joy, beauty, hope, peace and renewal, and new beginnings.

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