The Storm We Would Have Never Chosen

This has been something that’s been rolling around in my head for the past few weeks, so I’m just going to put it out there. Sometimes it’s hard to know exactly when to express what’s on my heart; I want to be sensitive to those around me and at the same time heed that small voice inside my head and heart.  Last year on my homeschooling blog I posted what I thought were some pretty solid pointers that had been shared with me over the years (some of which I’ve actually even tried to follow!) written in the voice to an unnamed friend who had just begun home schooling.  She blistered me and berated me after she read it, accusing me of calling her out in public and shaming her on her home schooling journey.  Wow, that slap still stings, as it was completely opposite of my intent. Timing.

So here it is:  if you have trusted your life with Jesus, if you’ve made that decision to make Jesus the savior of your life, Jesus is with you. ALWAYS.  Yesterday as I was trying to catch as much of the sermon as I could from the lobby where I was hanging out with our 16 year old son, who has multiple disabilities and can sometimes be distracting in a service (think hearing “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star” from across a sanctuary competing with the pastor’s voice—ya, it’s like that).  So anyway, there we were out in the lobby, where they thankfully have tables & chairs set up for those who can’t be in the service for whatever reason.  The passage the pastor was speaking from was from Mark 4:35, the one where the disciples were on a boat with Jesus and a wicked storm came up out of nowhere and they were all freaked out and going all splodey-head while Jesus slept on some sweet cushions in the bow of the boat (Gigi’s rough translation).  The thing the pastor said that stuck with me was “Focus on Jesus regardless of what’s going on around you”.  Focus.

I have a couple of friends who are going through unbelievably painful circumstances right now.  One friend is embroiled in quite honestly what appears to be the most evil and nasty custody dispute I’ve EVER heard of.  Her disabled son is paying an incredible price.  The court system where she lives is so corrupt it’s almost beyond belief.  She’s been swept under by this extreme injustice for years.  For YEARS.  My heart breaks for her, but it breaks even more knowing (for a fact) that she is not the only parent out there fighting for the rights of her child and facing unbelievably corrupt odds.  Through it all she is clinging to the hope of Christ that justice WILL come.  Evil will be blotted out.  In the meantime we pray for her precious son that he be protected by God’s mighty army of angels. Protection.

I have another friend who’s walking through circumstances that in essence she brought upon herself.  I KNOW what she’s going through.  I KNOW what it’s like to have your life blown apart at the velocity of a NASCAR crash.  I KNOW what it’s like to make idiotic decisions, which are rooted in lies about yourself and your self worth that you’ve been brought up in and then you wrongly adopted as the truth for your soul.  I KNOW what it’s like to not fully “get” what your identity in Christ is, so you easily trade it in for what feels good at the moment.  I’m not saying that that was her course of behavior or that that’s how she came to the decisions she made.  I’m saying I did that.  I know the ache and pain of walking through the rubble that has become your life.  It’s so incredibly difficult to look at what could have been “your other life” over there in that alternate universe where you didn’t screw things up so badly.  I get that.  It’s like living a “Mad Max” movie, only in this version you don’t get the cushy seat and the popcorn and you don’t get to leave the theater when it’s over. I wish I could hug my friend and reassure her a thousand times that Jesus is right there with her as she walks through her new reality.  Sometimes the storms tossing us around are those of our own making, but Jesus is still with us no matter what. Compassion.

We’re all going through “stuff”, some of it of our own making, some of it thrust upon us by the evil that surrounds here on planet Earth, but Jesus is truly with us every single confounding, confusing, discouraging second.  He knows the outcomes of these storms and He wants our hearts and eyes on Him so He can guide us through.  Trust.

Simple, not easy.  But Jesus, who is not only our best friend, but also the creator of the universe, knows this.  He is with us in the storm.

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