Sunday, March 09, 2008

When We Walk Against the Wind

Warm granola sat on the counter, the house full of its nutty aroma. The kitchen floor was scraped and scrubbed clean and my Saturday morning chores were done. As I washed the floor, I even had a chance to return three phone calls from earlier in the week. There were only a few items thrown in the wash bucket by wayward twins - a board book was drying on the hand rail and my gloves, turned inside out were hanging under the kitchen sink. It had been a peaceful morning.

I got ready to go for a walk and I was warmed by the scene of our home before I left. Olivia was drawing a whale at the dining table, Hannah was finishing cleaning one of the bathrooms, and Jason was entertaining the twins with toys in the basement. As I closed the door, zipping my coat higher against the swirling snow and wind, I could hear the strains of Josh practising Beethoven's Fifth Symphony on the piano.

The peace I felt now belied the events of the week. It was a tough week. I had been irritable at times, harsh on occasion when correcting the children. I had been contentious with Jason as we struggled to make some big decisions. I was overwhelmed with the daily grind and the never-ending tasks, children's squabbles, and the tsunami of needs generated by a young family.

As I pushed against the wind and blowing snow, I was thankful for the biting cold. It helped me to be reflective, centered in the peace I felt as I walked. The spirit of calm was in direct contrast with the discouragement I had experienced all week. Everything was now a blurry white. It was difficult to see, even with the sunglasses I wore to protect my eyes from the glaring snow.

Mostly this week I was discontent with myself. Trying in so many ways and failing, over and over again. Wondering if I'd ever have control of this tongue. I was feeling that my ongoing efforts were futile, so tired I was, of missing the mark. I was disgusted with my own impatience, angered by my lack of gentleness. I felt alone and unlovely. I certainly was unlikable. I couldn't even like me, so how was anyone else suppose to.

The longer I walked, the faster the snow fell. When I was at the half way mark, I had to walk into the wind to get home. I could see nothing except the few feet in front of me. The wind howled across the farmer's fields and the walk was no longer enjoyable or even comfortable. The coldness was stinging my face as I quickened my pace. I couldn't see very well as snow pelted relentlessly into my eyes. I walked by instinct, knowing the way and faithfully putting one foot in front of the other.
Snow was coming up over my runners and melting. Although my feet weren't cold, they were getting quite wet.

Life on this earth is sometimes like my walk. You're walking into the wind and it just isn't comfortable or even enjoyable. You walk because of what you know and because you know Him and that, at times, has to be enough. You don't see very far ahead but God shows you where to take the next step. You walk by faith, not by sight. God is faithful and we are sojourners on this globe. This world is not our home.

It's at times like these that I remind myself that I will one day be like Him, when I shall see Him as He is. I draw strength from the One who is my strength, knowing joy will come in the morning. Perhaps the sun will shine tomorrow and there will be the calm, the peaceful silence after the storm.

God is faithful to complete the good work He began in me. The journey is as valuable and as necessary as the victory. Perhaps I will one day know the joy of giving a hand up to another discouraged traveller.

One day I will be like Him for I shall see Him as He is.

Behold, I tell you a mystery; we shall all not sleep, but we shall all be changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet; for the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we shall be changed...Therefore my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your toil is not in vain in the Lord. I Corinthians 15:51-52,58 NASV

3 comments:

Belinda said...

Dear Joyful,
It sounds like such a week that you've had.

I disappoint myself too, more often than I wish, but I'm trying to remember that as long as I lean on my own efforts I will never reflect Christ. He wants me to move over and just make room for him to live through me.

It's a subtle but significant difference. When I find the secret of doing it better I will let you know, but for now, I'm working on it!

I loved the description of the snowstorm!

Blessings for this week.

Susan said...

Hi Joyful,

I said to a friend last week, thinking of some of the challenges God is using to work character into me, "Heaven's looking pretty good right now..."

She recoiled in horror, and I had to be quick to say, "I'm not talking about suicide! But heaven is my true home and I'm longing to be there. Some days more than others." That happened to be one of the "more" days.

It's good to keep the destination in mind. It encourages us to sow wisely and to remember that there is purpose in all of this.

This too shall pass, but the fruit will remain.

Thanks for sharing your heart once again.

Angcat said...

I love your analogy of the storm Joyful. It's true, somedays the only way we can get through is one step at a time, keeping our eyes fixed on Him. I think the trap is when we have a good day and figure it's ok to take our eyes off Him. The only safe way is to be fixed on Him all the time, stormy or not.
His mercy is new every morning.
Love Ang