This morning, I went for a swim at the fitness center and it allowed me plenty of time to think. There's no music, no technology, no nothing - so it's quiet with just the sound of the water lapping at the sides of the pool. Back and forth I go and for a while, my head is swimming around in thoughts too.
As I was praying about how to handle the situation properly, I kind of heard this thought as I asked myself how can I use this situation to become a better writer? And it reminded me that adversity doesn't have to destroy us - it can make us better and stronger. The decisions we make in those instances either make us or break us.
My mind then jumped to when my son first had his wreck, now over 11 years ago. I recall going to the chapel in the bottom floor of the hospital and praying something like Lord, don't let this make me bitter or hard - My prayer early on was that adversity would shape me - help me draw closer to Him and that He'd still be able to use me in it.
James and Peter both started their letters by asking the readers to be patient in tribulation and struggles. Early Christians were encouraged to let patience have its complete work and that in the midst of trials. Peter explained to the young church that they should rejoice when faith is tried because in the end - we'll receive a reward for hanging in there. James told the 12 tribes, consider it JOY when you face various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance and LET endurance have its complete work so you can be mature.
As we face this day as caregivers, no matter what happened to get us to this point, may we hold our heads up knowing we are still in the fight. We are enduring. We are still faith-full. We are still pursuing Him - our adversity has not won. It has not taken us from Him, cannot take us from His love, and has not distracted us for long enough that we haven't returned to Him with our heart time and time again.
Today, I will give myself a fist-bump for hanging in there - and you give yourself one too! Here we are in the midst of struggles, adversity, and trials, still pursuing His heart. Maybe we should give ourselves a break! I'll meditate on His strength IN me today and think about how it's been His strength that has carried me through to this point. I'll also thank Him for the growth whether I actually see it or feel it or not - and I'll thank Him for not abandoning me on those dark, whiny nights. Will you join me?