Yes, I'm still alive. Yes I still serve and awesome God. NO I have not a had a great few weeks. Times are trying, and in the midst of all of these trials its been interesting to see where my help comes from.
I turn to my friends. They are my comfort. They answer the phone when I call. They give a heartfelt groan and offer to help. They take me out for dinner and make me laugh. They share their own heart-wrenching stories and suddenly my trials don't seem so bad. They share their amazing victories and the gray clouds are gone if only for a moment. I truly treasure my friends. I hear them loud and clear.
I turn to my family. My children delight me, challenge me and exhaust me. Its hard to dwell on anything when there are diapers to change, spills to clean, discipline to enforce and life lessons to teach. My husband says to quit pretending I'm carrying a bag of lead, its only feathers. Well, darn-it, doesn't that jsut makes it all better.
I turn to my pastor. Thank God for the small, loving church that I attend. I am blessed that in this congregation our pastors have their hearts and inboxes available for crisis moments. I am blessed that we are small enough that our church is led in such a way that each family is led to God in a personal way.
But above all of this...My help comes from the Lord. In the middle of a few of the roughest weeks on record, my faith has been challenged in a big way. I want to yell at everyone, God included. I'm madder than I've been in ages. Instead I get this annoying voice in my head replaying a line from a song: "...Oh God of Jacob..." What the heck? This got me reading about this guy Jacob. ( Again, I ask for apologies on the fact that I'm no scholar.) Jacob tricked his brother, got duped by his father in law and literally wrestled with God (and more...read the book!). All the while, his faith in God was strong. Jacob screwed up when he tricked his brother. He figured that out, and learned in the process. He was duped by his father in law, but he turned that situation around and bettered himself. As to wrestling with God...that really happened and Jacob came out sunny side up, if limping.
So, back to the now annoying song in my head. I only wish I knew the rest. I am proud that the God who loved (and bailed out) Jacob also cares for me. I am glad that I can know him in a personal way and share my griefs with him. I can honestly say that I wish he spoke to me as loudly as a few of my friends. I wish his will was as transparent as what my children want. I wish he'd shoot me an encouraging text like my awesome children's pastor. But at the end of the day, he asks me to give over my burdens (hard), get on my knees, and follow. I'm limping now because I'm wrestling with life, but hold on God. I'm coming.