Thursday, February 25, 2010

at a stand still

Sitting in traffic is not fun. It can be down right irritating. As you sit there in traffic, you can see that you are just stuck, not moving at all, and look over and see the traffic on the other side of the highway moving at a great pace, not stopped at all.


Have you had one of those moments in life where everything seemed to stop? It is like life just came to a stand still. It feels as though your very breath has been taken away. Your wondering if you will ever move again. But as we are feeling this way, we can look out into the world and nothing else has stopped. Our pain is so very real, at times you want others to take notice. You simply feel as though when loss has come, that everything should stop right along with you at least for a moment, but it doesn't. Life keeps going around us.


As my parents are from the south, I learned as a little girl when a funeral was passing by you pulled over on the side of the road as they passed. In this way you were showing respect. I still today do this. As they pass I remember that feeling on the day of my dad's memorial. I sit there with my heart full for these people, whoever they are, knowing the tears are falling, and traffic is still moving, and they feel as though time is standing still. My children have also claimed this small but peaceful moment to acknowledge an other's life.


I have had a few of those moments where time seemed to stand still. One I still feel today is when my youngest daughter left home. I thought my world was ending. I knew it was ending. I knew I didn't want to go on, and there was nothing going to pull me out of the hole I felt I was in. It was one of those days asking, "Why"? I felt in my heart that God had left me on that day. I felt alone and scared.


But the Lord did not leave me on that day or on any other. He was right there with me. As I saw the red light, He was seeing the green. He knew my life would go on. He knew my daughter would return to my life. He knew that this trial would change me forever, but through Him, this trial brought me to another place with Him. It strengthened my faith, because I knew at the time He was all I had to really trust in. He lifted me up and He carried me through, bringing much growth and lessons along the way. He changed me to look more like Him. He knew each feeling, each emotion I was carrying on those days, and just what I needed to move on.


Just when we think that life is ending, it is a new beginning. Its a turn on a new road, one that we have never been on before, but we soon find our way. We learn the sights and sounds, and we see glimpses of Him through the window of our pain.


Remember Job who lost everything? He lost his family, all that he had, everything. I think he thought life ended that day, but then it still got worse. He lost his health. When all around him looked as though it was going to take him down, he didn't lose sight of God. All around him were telling him to just curse God and get it over with. But he didn't, and he wouldn't. God didn't leave him, and through these trials of Job, it strengthened him, renewed him, and brought him a new life he never thought would come again. God restored Job's life, God was in Job's life, and Job was a witness to others as to just what God can do.


He can bring us out of the hole we are in. He can dry those tears, and He can wrap us in His love when we have the feelings of loss, of hurt, and despair. People will come and go in our lives. We will not always be surrounded by others who reach out or understand, but the one thing I know without a doubt is God is never leaving me. He is staying right there with me in the midst of my pain.


That red light that comes in life, doesn't stay red forever. It changes, and as it does we too change. We might be yielding and going slow for pace, but that green light will come again, and God will see us through all. Sometimes standing still for a time is what brings more joy in moving forward again.
In Job 17:1 we find Job crying out, "My spirit is broken, my days are extinguished, the grave is ready for me." Job was broken, and if you read the story of Job, you find he cried out many times, he asked why, he didn't lose his connection with God. In fact it grew as Job went through his trials. Job held on to the One he knew was there with him throughout all.
Again in Psalms we can read in 69:1-3,"Save me, O God! For the waters have come up to my neck. I sink deep in mire, where there is no standing; I have come into the deep waters, where the floods overflow me. I am weary with my crying; My throat is dry; My eyes fail while I wait for my God." It is not wrong for us to cry out to God. We are to be honest with Him. He already knows our feelings. He wants us to share with Him, to be real, and call upon Him. When we do with our heart, with everything bare, we will find Him, we will feel His love and comfort.
In Hebrews 13:5-6 we find He will never leave us. "Let your conduct be without covetousness; be content with such things as you have. For He himself has said, I will never leave you nor forsake you. So we many boldly say: The Lord is my helper; I will not fear. What can man do to me?"
If your sitting at that red light today thinking you can no longer breathe, and are afraid to look out. Don't fear what is in front of you. Take your time, let God lead you, and He will give you your breath back, and He will bring you into a new day.
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