“you can spend your whole life buildin’
somethin’ from nothin’
one storm can come and blow it all away
build it anyway

you can chase a dream
that seems so out of reach
and you know it might not ever come your way
dream it anyway

God is great, but sometimes life ain’t good
when i pray it doesn’t always turn out like i think it should
but i do it anyway
i do it anyway

this world’s gone crazy and it’s hard to believe
that tomorrow will be better than today
believe it anyway

you can love someone with all your heart
for all the right reasons
and in a moment they can choose to walk away
love ’em anyway

you can pour your soul out singin’
a song you believe in
that tomorrow they’ll forget you ever sang
sing it anyway
yeah sing it anyway

i sing
i dream
i love anyway…”

~ “anyway”.. by martina mcbride

One day when my sister had the radio on, I heard this song and fell in love with it. I love the heart of it.

Storms come. That’s the way life is. But that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t live anyway. We have to make the most of the life God has given us. Making my aim in life to avoid hard times is not really living. To live in fear is to waste my life.

Just because it is hard doesn’t mean we should not go out and live. When a dream seems impossible and so out of reach that I could never get there, I need to still dream. The adventure in life is in chasing after the seemingly impossible, out-of-reach dreams. Maybe I will get there eventually, but even if I never do, at least I tried, and at least I had the adventure of going after it.

Martina’s right… “God is great, but sometimes life ain’t good…” [emphasis mine] Life does not always go my way. My prayers are not always answered like I think they should be. But if things always went my way, I would lose the trust and faith that I have in God. I would begin to think that I have life and God all figured out, and that just is not the way it is. And if it always turned out like I think it should, I would become so spoiled. God knows what is best. He knows just what I need. He knows when what I pray for is not the best thing, what I really need.

It is so easy to sit here and write these words. Setting them into action is another story. I spent this past weekend in Tennessee for a family reunion, and it was a really great time. This side of my family is huge yet so close-knit, and that, paired with the beauty of the Smoky Mountains, made for such an amazing time. While it was a really great trip, it was sad in its own way too. There are only three sisters and one brother left now out of eleven… One of my great-uncles is not doing too well. The doctors think he might have cancer. I’m praying that he doesn’t.. we all are. But when I pray, it doesn’t always turn out like I think it should. I pray anyway. We got to stop by and see him before leaving for home, since he was too weak to make it to the reunion even though it was only about an hour from his home. It was so good to see him, yet it tore my heart up to see how weak he is and to see how much it tore his heart up knowing that he’d not been able to come to the reunion or to my graduation party, or to so many other things.

I can love people all my life, with all my heart, yet they can always walk away and choose not to love me back. Sometimes it’s not their choice to leave me. People die and leave me too. But even though I have lost so many people in my life at one time or another, I don’t choose not to love anymore. I cannot choose not to love. I have to love anyway, because that is really the only way to live.

It’s not easy to trust and to love.. I don’t always feel like it.. and truthfully, sometimes I don’t even want to. It seems too hard or too up-hill, too much giving and trusting with no reward. I know that’s not true though. I know from experience that God is always here with me, that He is always listening, that He always loves me. I know that He will always work things out for my good because I love Him.

“We are assured and know that [God being a partner in their labor] all things work together and are [fitting into a plan] for good to and for those who love God and are called according to [His] design and purpose.” (Romans 8:28, Amplified Bible)

I might not always understand. I often — even usually — don’t. His answers to life are most often different from my own. Learning to accept that and to trust Him is part of growing and living. It is part of keeping my joy.

So.. I want to live even when life might not go my way. When the rain comes.. I want to dance in it. I want to have that kind of joy.