How do you “Deal with it?”
When the world is closing in on you, and you truly have no remote idea of what comes next.
When the only news you can see is bad.
When life gives you proverbial (or real) lemons.
When the doctors have given up hope.
When you just can’t catch a break.
How do you deal with it?
I woke up early this morning to pray about this very topic. As you all know, my Dad has been fighting cancer now for a couple of years. Two major surgeries. Spots on the liver. Swelling. Kidney malfunction. A kink in the colon. It’s been a tough fight. At times it’s been unbelievably hard for him, as well as the family.
How do you deal with it?
How do you find strength?
I think as Christians, it is easy for us to say to one another, “Praise anyway”, but when the rubber hits the road how do you do that? How do you say, “God, I don’t get it, but I trust You and I praise You and in whatever happens You’re God, and I’m not.”
How do you say, “God, don’t you see how bad this hurts” and “God, You’re in control” in the same breath?
There, my friends, is where being grounded in the Word of God becomes essential.
The Pslams are always good for a bit of perspective in this regard.
I’ve written previously on my personal blog about Psalm 13. David has reached a point of utter despair. A place where God has surely stopped listening.
He praises anyway.
He says, “In spite of the circumstances, You are God. I am not. So, I will continue to trust. I will continue to praise.”
Because through it all, He is an unfailing God.
All too often, we think that God must work within the parameters which we set for Him. In doing so, we miss the miracles in the way He is working. We miss the peace that He longs to give. Instead we walk in the anxiety. We walk in the short-sightedness.
I get why we do it. No one likes pain and suffering. No one likes to be in the place of utter and complete desperation and dependency. We’re taught in our American culture that we are to be pillars of strength. That no matter what happens we can overcome it. That we have the ability. We have the power.
We’ve created a culture that ultimately says, “I don’t need You, God. I am strong enough. I am smart enough.”
It’s all hogwash.
We don’t have the strength.
We don’t have the smarts.
We have to come to the point in our lives where the absolute best we can do is fall on our face and say, “You are God. I am not. Therefore, I will worship You anyway. I will praise You in spite of the circumstance.”
Only after we have hit that place, can we, like Job, truly say: “You give and take away. Blessed be the name of YHWH.”
And, its only in that place of utter desperation that can say, “Led me out of my personal drama and make me a part of Your story.”
I don’t know what the next 6 hours, 6 days, 6 months, or 6 years hold in store. What I do know, though, is that no matter what they hold, I, like David, will say, “You, soul, bless the Lord”. And despite the circumstance, I will CHOOSE to say, “Blessed be the name of YHWH!”