Saturday, March 16, 2019

To Be Strong




Being a strong person doesn’t mean being harsh, bold, or ‘tough.’  It means being gentle despite how many times you’ve been hurt, being kind when you want to say something rude, and being soft, when you so easily could grow bitter.

Being a strong person doesn’t mean engaging in the fight. Sometimes it takes greater strength to turn away from one.

The world encourages strength. But what IS strength? We all know what physical strength looks like - but emotional and psychological strength are often hidden. For they don’t show themselves as easily.

And they are usually the opposite of what our human nature wants to exhibit.

If you want to truly be strong, refuse to grow hard. 

If you want to be a strong person, refuse to give up on yourself, or those you love.

If you want to be strong emotionally, always look for things that grow yourself, encourage yourself, and motivate you to be a better person.

To be strong - means to withstand the unfair things in life without looking for ‘payback’. Without looking to ‘get even’. And without looking for ‘revenge.’

To be strong - means to accept that something didn’t go the way you wanted. And to decide to be happy with the new direction, anyways.

Inner strength brings great power. It brings great peace. And it brings immeasurable joy. Because you are able to stand on shifting ground.

So when you hear about being a strong man or woman, remember it’s not just being able to lift weights, run far distances, and push your body to the limits.  It’s about being able to still smile despite countless disappointments, love through the hurts, and believe despite the obstacles.

True strength is in forgiveness. Patience. Gentleness. And trying to understand.

I want to be a strong person. I want someone to look at me, and say, “How can she still be kind after all of that? Or, how can she be so positive after all of that?”

I want inner emotional strength.

How about you?

Thursday, March 7, 2019

The Test We Always Try to Walk Around






Have you ever left something out in your house just to see how long it would take someone to pick it up? I have. I call it “the test.” 

It usually doesn’t work.  

But I’ve tried many times over the years, to leave out those dirty socks on the living room floor, the empty glass on the counter, or the piece of trash. I’ve been curious (and fascinated at the same time) to see how long it would take someone to deal with it. But I found out, that people will usually just walk over it, or fail to see it in the first place.  It’s almost as if they are “blind” to it. Even if it shouldn’t be there.

And if they do see it, I think they secretly hoped that if they ignored it long enough, that “mom” would take care of it.

And it often resulted in just that. 

When my kids were home, I often tried these “tests” over the years. And as I have reflected on them (and the failure of them) - I have wondered if God has His own tests that He has tried out on us. 

Do you think He does? 

I wonder if God “tests” me to see how long it will take me to deal with a certain situation, or if I will take care of something on my own; without Him having to clearly point it out to me. And I wonder, how often I walk over or around these tests. How often do I fail to see them altogether? 

I wonder how often I ignore these things, hoping that God will take care of them for me?

Maybe this explains why we have to learn the same lessons over and over again. 

Maybe this is why we seem to have certain things happen continually to us in life. We just don’t take care of them the first time they cross our paths.

We try to avoid, look away, ignore, and pretend that we don’t need to deal with things.

But we do.

I hope that I’ll be more aware the next time God might see fit to “test” me. I hope that I’ll see what it is that He’s waiting for me to pay attention to.  And I hope that I can learn to take care of things in the right way, with the right attitude, so that He doesn’t have to give me the same test over and over again.

For, I really don’t want to fail a test. 

And I REALLY don’t want to have to take it over and over, and over again.

How about you?