Thursday, November 5, 2015

You've Got This

Last week, we visited our daughter and her family who recently relocated for our son-in-law to attend seminary.  

The elementary school and a city park are located just a few blocks from their house.  One morning as we picked up our granddaughter from kindergarten, we lingered with her little brother and sister at the playground for fifteen minutes or so, before we headed home for lunch.  Two of her schoolmates joined them on the play equipment.

Maggie was practicing her skills on the monkey bars, learning to work her way across the rings to the other side.  The first few rings are within her abilities, but then about the third ring, she is stuck.  She swings her body and hangs on with both hands, but she cannot quite YET get past that point.  Her friend Sophia moves quickly across without hesitating and seemingly without effort.  It is obvious that she has been at this for awhile.  Sophia tried to encourage her friend.

“You’ve got this, Maggie!” she would shout from the other side.

But as much as Maggie really wants to make it, thinking positively or not, or trying to convince herself, the strength is not yet there.  Practice a little more.  Each week a little further.

It occurred to me as I watched her swinging her legs and grasping the rings how often I am stuck at that same spot in trusting God.  Those first couple of rings – no problem – I can really do those on my own.  But then…. when it comes to trusting God with the harder stuff, I grip even more when I should be moving forward.  And the hesitation makes trusting Him with the next ring that much harder.  And I get stuck.

We all face “monkey bars” in our lives.  We all face things that which only God can do – in His strength, in His timing, in His sovereign control.  And that does not mean a passive “You do it, LORD,” but a very active relying on Him, “You’ve got this, LORD.”  Help me through this.

I don’t have to attempt the entire span at once, but God nudges me, “Trust Me one more ring.”

And in the trying over and over, in the grasping, in the falling, in the climbing back up and trying again, God builds His strength in me, by knowing Him more.  I can trust Him in this.  He takes me to a deeper dimension in my relationship with Him, each strength building on another. 

And when we master this feat,
when we learn to trust Him in this,
         we are strengthened for the next,
one hand over another.

Because life gets a little harder
        outside the fence of the playground.
And when we get there,
     God has already equipped us.
It  is not our strength after all.
But  His.

GOD, the Lord, is my strength;
He makes my feet like hinds’ feet,
He makes me tread upon my high places.

                             Habakkuk 3. 19

Not trying to convince myself,
        you've got this,
but acknowledging out loud,
   "You’ve got this, LORD".

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