New day. NEW day. Pancakes and tree decorating and live nativity and good friends always there. That cozy, wintry feeling and hot coffee and a husband who graced your dreams last night just to hold your hand there and holiday cheer and fruit that is the evidence against all the ways the enemy wants to crumble the confidence of who you are.
People who love you. People who know you and want still to love you deeply, faith that this too shall pass and tomorrow will bring yet another new day.
Children playing in the floor with the Christmas village people, a warm, slow breakfast on a cold December morning. Truth, wisdom, forgiveness.
But Yesterday. Yesterday brought with it challenges brand new to my home, complexities never before sorted through, terrain highly uncomfortable to an easily bruised soul. I spend some time on the kitchen floor, in a peaceful little corner after a done day. And then to bed, where mind and heart can find an eight-hour reprieve.
I grasp a warm mug in the morning, gaze out to the rising sun, look around at all these tidbits of things that I love and that fill my new day, and I feel that nudging reminder about yesterday (and so many days)…
Isn’t this the fire that refines? The pressure that forces us to choose which road we will take, that presses us to decide who it is we will be?
Isn’t it the heartache that reminds us where to find our joy, for there is joy, always joy, somewhere. The same ache that reminds us where to focus our hearts, that we always have lists, tucked away behind the momentary discomfort, of those things to be truly thankful for, those little nuggets of all that is so, so good and worth the flames. Those little gems that are the result of very small but good decisions day after day, that make up a life and make it wonderful.
I’ve lived on the other side. The side of making very bad decisions day after day. On this side…I’m still one flawed human among other flawed humans. The fire still comes.
This time, on this side, I use it as fuel.
I once heard a pastor say,
“where there is growth there is seldom comfort. Where there is comfort there is seldom growth.”
I wrote it down amidst the scriptures to have as a reminder always.
“And the Lord will guide you continually and satisfy your desire in scorched places and make your bones strong.” Isaiah 58:11
Please, do that…for I am not so strong.
The pressure will be on, and I accept it not for its pleasantries, but for its polishing process in me, for I am nothing yet that I hope to one day be. And all that I am (and am not) extends far beyond myself and my years.
“And your ancient ruins shall be rebuilt, you shall raise up the foundations of many generations.” Isaiah 58:12
Though the waters may rise, my prayer for this day is that our confidence will not be shaken.
Though the waters may rise, may where we stand in the hearts of those who know and love us never be in question.
Though the waters may rise, may we stand firm , never growing weary, in doing the right thing…and the next right thing and the next right thing and the next right thing…despite the heavy attack.
Anyone who ever stood for anything was also called to sacrifice.
I know I am not alone. May you also find confidence, peace and joy nuggets within the fire. And may your new day come quickly.