Sunday, September 14, 2014

Tough Stuff

Its been almost a month since I have posted anything here.  I would like to say its because life has been so smooth and busy.  The busy would be 100% true and well the smooth 100% false!  (Did you hear the teacher in me come out?) Its really been insane, that I can't even remember back a month to start with the craziness.  We had two birthday parties in August (I have to look through the pics on my computer to remember...I'm too young for this to be happening already), Brett's Mom and Bob visited and then later his brother along w/ our niece and fun!  Eli was sick with that nasty respiratory virus, I ran two 5K races within a week of each other (haven't ran much since high school...let's not go there), signed up for another Color Run in a couple weeks to do w/ our Classical Conversations homeschool family, went to my first Major League Baseball game w/ Brett, Zahavah and Eli!  And this month we started back to homeschooling.  And I garage sale'd some through all that.  All that sounds peachy and wonderful and fun...and IT IS, but....the enemy is alive and pecking (like a rooster, chicken whichever of those evil birds you prefer).  And I have been feelin it, from about every angle of life.  Its to be expected when your Pastor decides to preach on TOUGH STUFF. Tough stuff is gonna happen.  And it has been since before he started the series!  We also knew we would be under attack because my husband spent 72 hours on A Walk to Emmaus.  I have found myself in unrelenting spiritual battles.  Still happening today.  I rejoice that God has been faithful.  He DOES NOT promise a life free danger or hardship.  It was interesting last week when our small group leader said, "I don't want to sign up for a life of Job!"  And I thought...but haven't we already?  Haven't we already signed up for that by proclaiming our Salvation in Jesus Christ!!!!!  I didn't say that out loud, but I did think it.
Today my friend Pam Hudson spoke on stage with Pastor Scott because she has been fighting cancer for five years (I HATE cancer)...some tough stuff you bring on, and some finds you all on its own and Pam lives daily with HARD tough stuff that she didn't go looking for.  I know a Mom who lives with HARD tough stuff daily too, as two (YES TWO) of her children have a terminal incurable disease.  These ladies lead tough lives I'm clueless about, they have my daily prayers.
There is tough stuff we kinda sign up for too.  When we step out of our comfortable little box into the great unknown through OBEDIENCE, we can meet tough stuff face to face.  I think that is where satan likes to show our unchartered, unfamiliar places.  Homeschooling was a lot like that for me...a move out of total obedience and yet God is using it to shine light in all the places of my life that need refined.  I struggle and I do not enjoy it everyday, but I'm honest about it.  So many people ask, "So, how is homeschooling going?"  I'm not sure they are asking because they really want the truth or just asking to be nice, but I tell them the truth.  God is refining me!
He will use whatever we let Him.  Its called surrendering. In the big picture my tough stuff isn't tough compared to many, but it doesn't change the fact that it's still my stuff that God is using.  We all have stories. (rabbit trail)...I was just telling my husband how hard it is for me sometimes to look around and see the pain and suffering of people.  I see it, I can feel it, everyone has a story and a hurt.  I understand why drug use, addiction and suicide is on the rise...people are suffering without hope!
In all our tough stuff, we as believers are promised an eternal life FREE OF pain and suffering.  God wants to use our stuff to mold us into HIS image.  He also wants to shine His glory through us. Proclaim His faithfulness in our lives. He wants to BE IN the trenches with us.  I don't know about you, but I tend to want to run, no BOLT from my tough stuff.  I don't like it.  I don't like pain...physical or mental (I suffer mostly from mental, I know, har har) and I don't like those around me to suffer.  In my rare but occasionally busy co-dependent self I want to fix and help, fix and help and help get you back in your happy hole.  But really...what GLORY does God get in that?