Thursday, February 9, 2012

Even the Sparrow has Found a Home

We have experienced some challenges lately.  I'm so thankful for God's work in my life, for as I recognize the familiarity with which I face these, I remember my past reactions to such concerns.  Almost always worry was the best word to describe my response, the kind of worry I feel most acutely in the very pit of my stomach at the very cusp of waking every morning.  I've prayed about this issue over the years.  Some struggle to set aside worry as they attempt to drift off at night.  I struggle at the other end of sleep, and I hate it.  I've asked God to help me eradicate worry altogether, adding that,  at the very least, could He please help me relocate it to any other part of my day??

As a chronic Over-Thinker, I've tried to find balance in the way I deal with troubling circumstances.  I classify myself not as an optimist, nor as a pessimist, but as a realist.  I attempt to live neither in denial (optimist!) nor under a perpetual cloud (pessimist!).

Naturally, when faced with a difficulty in life, we mentally scramble to consider someone else who is going through a bigger difficulty, so as to gain "perspective".  Then we tell ourselves, "Quit your whining!  It could be so much worse!"  I have decided that I disagree with this method.  Validating our emotions, thoughts and feelings while navigating a trial is so important.  I coined a non-eloquent phrase years ago: "No one else's trials can invalidate my suffering."  (I know, I know- it contains a double-negative.  But I've never been very good at math. ;-)

Often, we Christians feel compelled to label everything a blessing.
 I've come to the point where I view that as being just plain dishonest.  Yes, life is stuffed full of blessings, beginning with the very first breath I draw upon waking.  And God does promise to bring good out of every trial, even turning our mourning into dancing!  Amazing!  But hard times are not in themselves blessings.

Today as I was flipping through my Quote Book (in which I record important words I want to retain forever), I stumbled upon a good reminder from one of my very favorite books, The Sacred Romance, by Curtis and Eldridge.

"Pretending that life is easier and more blessed than it really is hinders our ability to walk with God and share Him with others.  Faith is not the same thing as denial. Blessings come...tend to be infrequent, unpredictable, transient...our journey is shaped more often by dragons and nits- crises that shake us to the core and...troubles that nag us to death...Are they tragic events and random inconveniences, or part of the plot through which God redeems our heart?"

Even the sparrow has found a home...
And therein lies the beauty of trials. Not only are they tests God uses to show us where we are in life, but they provide an invaluable opportunity for us to flee from fear, worry, and run straight to Him, laying our burdens at His feet.  How lovely is His dwelling place!  "Even the sparrow has found a home, and the swallow a nest for herself, where she may have her young- a place near your altar."  (Ps. 84:3)

1 comment:

Rissi said...

Hooray! Another blog post. =)

Love reading these and getting updates from you all!

Uncle Mike, Aunt Linda and Rissi