20 March 2008
The Bruised Reed- When You Feel Overwhelmed and Under Able
I woke up this morning with a headache that made me understand why headaches are often described as 'splitting.' I felt so miserable I considered amputation at the neck as my only option. Of course, that would be a permanent solution to a temporary problem and the side effects outweighed the benefits at that point. I opted for some Advil and some caffeine. It took some time, but eventually they worked. There is no mistaking that I am coming down with something.
Once I had the headache under control, I made my way to the pharmacy to purchase more medications. If I become "Nearer my God to Thee" sick, I don't have anyone to run to the store for me. I appreciate the wisdom of preemptive strikes. I registered my identification and runny nose with the pharmacist in exchange for the right to purchase some Pseudofed. It irritates me to have to write my name in their little book but it's the law. Besides the stuff you can buy OTC doesn't work nearly so well as good old fashioned Pseudofed. While I was there I bought a couple seed packets for my garden. Somehow buying something I need and like makes doing things I don't like more palatable.
I am still not used to the differences between Kentucky and California. In California my vegetable garden would be in the ground and underway. Here I am just gathering supplies. The locals tell me that gardens go in on Derby Day, the first Saturday in May. Today is beautiful and tomorrow we may have snow. If you don't like the weather in Kentucky you just have to wait a few minutes. I came home and put the supplies in the garage and realized I don't really feel like gardening today anyway.
I am enjoying the sunshine a little, but not enough to do anything physical. I have a house that needs cleaning but I don't want to be inside. I have some issues to work out and I can't find the solutions. I am in that restless place where your 'want to' and 'need to' get trumped by feeling overwhelmed and under able. I am worrying about and having empathy for my kids.
My youngest is doing well, but she has some choices she made as a very young adult that are making things difficult for her now. Nothing major, she is paying debts when she would like to be saving money. Being a mom has been a big eye-opener for her and she has shifted all her priorities. Sometimes she needs to be encouraged that doing the right thing is difficult but worth it. My oldest girl and her husband have made a hard life for themselves. They are caught in some loopholes and cannot find a way out. I know the way out, but they can't find it. When asked I tell them the way out, but they can't understand it. The don't see the cost of making things right now will be cheaper than waiting until later. They are being penny wise and pound foolish with their souls. Both of my kids grew up with the gospel but neither of them is following the Lord. All I can do is pray for them.
With my headache under control and the sun warming my face, I read something in The Bruised Reed, by Richard Sibbes
"Suffering brings discouragements, because of our impatience. 'Alas!' we lament, 'I shall never get through such a trial.' But if God brings us unto trial he will be with us in the trial, and at length bring us out, more refined. We shall lose nothing but dross (Zech. 13:9). From our own strength we cannot bear the least trouble, but by the Spirit's assistance we can bear the greatest."
It is good to be reminded that I am not alone in my spiritual discomforts. The concern for my kids and the desire to see them through their life difficulties is nothing compared to the care and concern my Heavenly Father has for me. Signing my name in the pharmacists book is a small nuisance. My name has been written in the Book of Life. Whatever this world brings, no matter how difficult and hard, my soul has been provided for and my debt to God paid in full. It doesn't get better than that.
35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?
36 Just as it is written, "For Thy sake we are being put to death all day long; we were considered as sheep to be slaughtered."
37 But in all these things we overwhelmingly conquer through Him who loved us.
38 For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers,
39 nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.