Grateful for the pains

Sometimes I wonder what exactly all this is about.  When I am tired from working and still have children to teach about Egypt and the Laundry Fairy skipped my house and the printer won’t work again, I think “It’s too much! I don’t want to do this anymore. I don’t want to fight the rising tide.  I just want to stop.”

I cannot tell what is going on.   Is this Satan trying to defeat us? Is God asking me to lay it all down?  My stuff?  My house? My church?  Everything I hold dear? Are you pruning us Lord? Why can’t we tell the difference? Does it matter?

I try to second guess our decisions. Should we have gone to school again for this or stayed in that job as long as we did? Were we supposed to have stayed in our other house? Should we have left long ago?

“Do not call to mind the former things, or ponder things of the past See! I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the desert and streams in the wasteland. (Isaiah 43:18-19)

They come in waves, these pains.  Between, them I can breathe normally and life goes on; laundry, learning, making bread.  I laugh with my kids.  Then one rolls over me.  I wonder what else I can do, what I can create to sell or how much more I can work. It’s not enough. I hear the whisper inside.  I cannot do enough or make enough or sell enough. I cannot fix this problem or make it go away.  I can only endure it, let it roll over me like a contraction, and focus, focus, focus on the Lord.

There is always a labor to birth new things and there is no epidural for these labor pains.  It is easy to forget, as in labor, that each pain brings you closer to the birth.  So I try to stay focused on the Lord.  I look on in wonder as He provides, not from the toil of our hands, but from others.  They are blessed and we are blessed by their notes, their calls, envelopes slipped anonymously into our hands, and their silent prayers that we do not hear, but feel in those low moments, when the Comforter gives us a moment of respite.  The cloud and fog of this world’s demands and ideas that so often and easily obscures the things of heaven lifts, and we can see the mountainous glory and presence of the Lord and I realize He has been there all along;  whether I scurry like Martha or sit at his feet like Mary; when I can hear his voice clearly or when all I hear is silence.

Momentary lifting of the fog on the mountain

I have much to be thankful for this week:

  • Generosity of unknown givers
  • A sky full of stars, whose Creator knows their names–and mine!
  • Note of encouragement from a dear friend
  • Finishing Boot Camp well!
  • Hot chocolate and conversation
  • Laughing with friends at work
  • Hearing my children laugh as they wrestle their Daddy in the den
  • Making up new chicken recipes
  • Tug of war with the dog
  • A summer-full of fresh Amish vegetables, now come to an end
  • Caramel lava cakes and Redwall for Star Night
  • Piles of fall leaves and children to play in them
  • Finding an old song I loved long ago–if you went to Woodmont in the 80’s , this is for you:). It’s words are still true and the cry of my heart.

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Filed under Gratitude, Meditation

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