So it has been a long and hard couple of weeks. I have had back/neck problems for most of my life, but recently the pain has been barely manageable. I have spent more time sleeping and sitting with a heating pad, than I can remember. Since that has been sapping the very life out of me, I have not been writing. It has caused me a tremendous amount of anxiety, since I am trying to get focused and diligent about this whole blog thing. Discouragement was my first name. So as my back has gotten better, my outlook has improved dramatically. It still took me days to sit down and start writing again. It seems like I am back to the whole hiding thing, but here I am back at it, trying to get back in the “work” of it.
So I was feeling a little low in church on Sunday morning, just feeling like I am letting God down by resisting this path I am on. I perked up a bit when I learned that we would hear from a guest speaker. I love our pastor, but the gentleman who would speak that morning has this great Scottish accent and his style is not what we typically hear. So it always makes for a fun sermon. He used a story out of the Bible that I know pretty well, as it is one that we teach to kids a lot. Instead of stopping at the normal sequence of events, he wove three events together to see a bigger picture. So to be fair, and not make this the world’s longest blog post, I may split this up a bit. So, when he started to speak, I was thinking, “I love this story, I got this one down”. There was one fact that I did not know, that for me opened up a whole other side to the story. That is what I really like about the Bible, it is that at different times, it has a different depth of meaning. Today he told the story of Jesus and His special friends, the disciples, and a time they went “across to the other side of the lake”. Jesus has been teaching all day, and he asks the disciples to get in the boat, and to cross the lake. During their “cruise”, Jesus falls contentedly asleep, all the while a storm kicks up threatening their well being. The men are scared and awaken Jesus to save them from drowning. Jesus response? To calm the waves and chide them for their lack of faith. I love this story, because it talks about faith and trusting Jesus. The story makes it clear, when Jesus tells you that you are going to the other side of the lake, even if a storm arises, you can trust that He is going to take you to the other side of the lake. For me, it is just what I needed to hear.
After being down for two weeks and feeling that my productivity level was zero, which it was, I needed some reassurance. Now rather than, “can I write anything someone wants to read”, my thought pattern was “can I just physically sit and write for a couple hours a day?” The answer I got was yes! If this is the boat I am supposed to be in, I can trust that we will get to the other side. Now, the journey may be a bit bumpy, rough, nausea inducing, and scary, but it is the means to be where I am supposed to be. I still have a twinge of the “yikes”, but I am calmed by who is in the boat with me. It was wonderful to hear that story again at just the right moment. To encourage, and give me hope.
He then proceeded to kick it up a notch. How? By giving me some information that I did not know. While I thought I knew this story well, there was a very particular piece of information I didn’t have. Where was the other side of the lake? And who lived on the other side? Now this is kind of like a Batman moment. Same bat time, same bat channel, you know how it works.
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