Posts Tagged suffering
I’ve sure been on a roller coaster the last few weeks; but I’m trying to get back on track and hopefully stay there. I got so caught up in writing for others (that’s how we keep the lights on!) that I’ve let all my stuff go. Over the last few weeks I’ve been doing some deep thinking about everything basically. I’ve come to the conclusion that life just sucks sometimes and while there are some things that I simply do not have the power to change – there are some things that I can. And so I intend to change what I can – and that usually simply means that I need to change!
One of the things I’m doing is to reevaluate everything and then set some new goals. One of those goals being to get back to maintaining my blogs. By reevaluate everything I literally mean “reevaluate everything”! One of the biggest struggles I have had other than the obvious – is the dreams that I felt like God had given me for my life – as well as the dreams Chris had. Were they really from God; if so – why have they seemingly been discarded? If not – how was I mislead into thinking that they were God-given? See how crazy my thoughts are — and I’m not sure there is a solid answer.
I can say this though – I always saw myself (God-given or not) traveling the world. I simply love to travel and experience people, cultures, foods, and just different stuff – I love seeing things I’ve never seen before or going places I’ve never been. Well that’s just not happening like I thought it would. But I have been in most major countries around the world via Skype. I even went to Malaysia today! I’ve taught in Pakistan, prayed with and had Bible study with believers in the Philippines, and witnessed to people in China – from my living room, coffee in hand while still wearing my pajamas. At least there’s no jet lag! lol —
It’s not really the way I wanted it to happen – but it’s still happening. And that’s gotta count for something even in my super over analytical mind.
I’m going to try and keep this short because I plan on becoming more regular about writing. I started the blog to share about my journey in the furnace – I can’t say “through” the furnace because there’s really no end in sight. I think that is most difficult – how can you dream or plan if you have no idea where you are going or when you might get there?
It really does take more faith in the furnace than it does to avoid it. All I can say is that no matter how crazy my mind gets – it always comes back to the fact that He is faithful. His faithfulness does not wane in the furnace or in the suffering that never seems to lessen. He is just as faithful when I am praising Him as He is when I am wondering where He went or if He exists at all.
Right now – I’m pretty up – that’s why I figured I better get myself together before I hit another slump. oh they come – there’s no reason to deny the down times or even try to avoid them – they are going to happen. The struggle is keeping myself together and not letting life get to me. That means that I am right back where I started and where I’ve always been – in pursuit of Him.
Job said something that really got stuck in my mind – “shall we accept the good and not the bad?” I’m learning that life has lots of good stuff and lots of bad stuff… but He is faithful. He never promised that we could float through life with no sorrow, pain or suffering – but He did promise that He’d be there with us while we face the stuff life throws at us…faithful as promised!
Today Chili’s is donating all of their profits to St. Jude’s in Memphis, TN. I am making my plans to find a way to order a meal so that I can have part in this massive campaign. You see it was only a few short years ago that I made a few trips up there with some of my fellow teachers to see a student who was suffering with leukemia. We would make a short trip of it… drive up from Louisiana to Memphis after school on Friday, spend all day with John and his mother, then try to make it home by sometime late Saturday night. (we sometimes had to stop and get rooms and roll on in early Sunday morning….)
I cannot speak for my colleagues, but I have never regretted those trips. John passed away in the same year. But thinking about Chili’s promotion today sparked my memories of ST. Jude’s. I remember specifically how happy John was to see us, even though we were his teachers (we did take a couple of students with us a time or two…). But this morning I thought more about how his mom would cling to us when we got there…how she visited and painfully shared her heart when John wasn’t listening. The male teacher would head out for John to give him some sort of tour and his mom would unload all of the grief of the moment that comes from watching your son suffer so…all the questions…all the doubts… the fears… and the hopes.
I really had no idea what those trips must have meant to her. Most of the time she was there alone with John. Her husband would come up sometimes but there were younger children at home that had to have some sort of “normal” maintained for them so he did not come but on weekends some.
It’s funny (not haha funny either) how experience brings understanding. Until I had faced the last three years I could not understand what our trips up must have meant to her…and to John I’m sure. Now I know at least in part how wonderful it is to get a phone call, instant message, text or a visit from a friend. It really does mean so much to us who are “going through” when someone takes a few seconds of their time to step away from their own burdens and spend a moment to say they care…or that they are praying for you.
I really didn’t know until now… so for those who have taken a moment and shared a phone call, a note or just dropped by to say, “Hi!” It really means so much…thank you. And if you haven’t yet – find someone today to call, or send a card to, pray for them – then tell them you prayed for them…You see, I never knew what it meant…until now.