Dear Lauren and Lydia,
It dawned on me early this morning…before I even had a chance to get out of bed, that it takes great courage to start another day, day after day knowing that things won’t and can’t be perfect today. It takes great courage to look in the mirror and see the physical and also the unseen imperfections we all carry day after day. It takes great courage to keep loving, risking, trusting, believing, hoping and persevering knowing that there will be hurts today, there will be failure, mistakes, and disappointment. Every day holds some of both.
It takes great courage to rise and face the day when you know you will never ‘arrive’, never be able to just coast on this earth until your very last breath. Kind of like losing weight feels to me. It will never be something that I don’t have to work at, that’s why it’s been so easy for me to give up most of the time.
None of us likes the idea of having to work and work at something only to see such little progress.
To fall into the same old temptation and habits is painful.
We have a hard time dealing with our own stuff let alone dealing with everybody else’s stuff that effects us too!
This morning I woke up with the verse running through my mind, “all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” It’s not something I usually think of but that verse says it all for me today. We all have sinned, in fact we will all sin today most likely. We all have fallen short and by bed time tonight will most likely have fallen short again. It can feel pretty overwhelming to realize how little we actually are capable of when it comes to real change in ourselves.
Our only hope is God. And it takes courage to believe in and trust a God who we can’t see, touch or hear. It takes courage to keep the faith when some things in life just have no good explanation.
Last night at church I heard a quote by Corrie Ten Boom that is still resonating with me this morning mainly because of the visual picture it created. She said…”when you go through the tunnel on the train and all you see is darkness that is not the time to jump off the train and throw away your ticket…that’s the time to trust the driver.” When I visualize that scenario it makes complete sense to me. You would never do something so foolish, you would sit back and trust that the driver knows where we’re going and how to get there. But how often do we jump off the train in life when darkness is around? You’ll see it all the time in life, maybe even experience it for yourself. That sudden feeling that you know better what to do and that nothing and nobody is worthy of your trust when hard times come.
It takes courage to stay on the train.
It takes courage day after day, tunnel after tunnel to trust the driver.
It does not take courage to jump off. All that takes is foolishness.
So we get up and we start the day and have good intentions. We don’t want to fall into the same bad habits, to repeat temptations that are all too familiar. We love that clean slate feeling but it isn’t long before the slate isn’t clean anymore. You and I are not capable of being perfect.
Most days feel like we are inching home in this race of life. Occasionally there might be a sprint forward but many days even involve a step or two backwards. A good day is a step forward. Seems incredibly small and almost not even worth noticing, but one step forward over a lifetime of living is huge.
It will be enough. Because…He is enough.
Be of good courage. You’ve been hurt…trust anyway. Been disappointed…believe anyway. Experienced failure…persevere regardless.
Learn what you can. Lean heavy on God to carry you. Learn to tune in and listen to His voice, to talk with him all throughout your day. And every night…let Jesus wash your feet.
That was another thing I heard last night at church. At the last supper Jesus washed the disciple’s feet. Peter didn’t want Jesus to do it and then went to the other extreme and wanted Jesus to wash all of him. Jesus said…you don’t need all of you washed…just your feet, you’ve already had a bath. In the same way…you don’t have to ‘become’ a Christian every day…you are already clean and righteous before God…but all of us pick up dirt along the road of life and all of us need our feet washed by Jesus…a daily confessing of sin.
Our daily reminders of how short we fall are never meant to crush us or cause us to give up trying. Instead, they are a way of causing us to want Jesus to wash our feet and being open to the reality of our need for Him.
Be of good courage. This day will hold it’s share of good and bad. You’ll hopefully move a few steps forward. But no matter what God is with you and for you.
There will be a day when you will arrive. A day when all will be made right with the world and with you and all will be redeemed. Until then…keep trusting. Keep believing. Keep hoping. Keep risking. Keep persevering. Keep facing each day with optimism and joy.
I love you and am proud of who you are right now imperfections and all. Thank you for loving your imperfect momma too. No one knows my stuff more than you two.