Accepting what is… becomes difficult for many who question every happening and squeeze understanding from every word they hear and every event in their lives. How can we explain a storm of rain, hail or snow pelting down from the clouds at certain times?
How can we explain a reversal of our economic status? How can we explain the loss of a parent or a child? Or explain the Why of what we do? How do we explain why our bodies suddenly become ill with a frightening diagnosis? Indeed, how can we explain the many unknowns of this life’s journey?
Sometimes the unknowns just are. We may question who we are and wonder if anything in life matters. Why doesn’t anyone care how we feel? What matters most of all is Hope. A Hope that reaches as far as infinity to God’s Forever and Beyond. Beyond what is for us now we find the most steadfast strength and hope. A hope that doesn’t question the Why we are and what our purpose in life can be. It is a matter of identity that we search for.
There are stages of life when there are changes. During these times trusting God and staying in prayer lead us through the changes to see what God’s will or purpose can be. Motherhood has stages – when children need you and then leave home. Loving with an open hand and letting go. Thirty-one years of the different roles in teaching and then retirement, brought many different stages and questions. I asked – Now, who am I? I learned an important lesson after ‘trying to find myself’ again. The titles that the world gives us are for this world. There is another identity that is far more important and lasting that comes as a child of God.
All the questions and doubts come from fear of not belonging or being accepted. Last Lord’s Day the congregation sang a new song. The first two lines caught my heart…. You unravel me, with a melody…You surround me with a song…Of deliverance, from my enemies…Till all my fears are gone. I felt the kinks of my soul relax and ‘unravel’ and listened to the next two lines: I’m no longer a slave to fear…I am a child of God. (Helser & Helser)
Then it struck me. Deep inside I was feeling the same after my Mother died after caring for her for four years. What is my purpose, where do I belong? Soon a phone call changed all these inward feelings. The invitation to serve a need of others made me look from inward to outward. Oh, how I served, and that one need led me to other needs for the next fourteen years. I knew who I was and I was comfortable. Was this the way my life would end?
God had more for me to learn. God transplanted me to a new life of service – care-giving in a new location. A sensible move to be near family took me from the comfortable to the unknown. What have I found in the past three years?
After I accepted what is.., I found a new way to serve, new friends and the blessing of living near family. I found a network of new caring friends and a church family that teaches and lives God’s Word faithfully. Every day I feel God’s assurance that I am in His Will as I care for my husband.
The lyrics of the song continue…
From my Mothers womb…You have chosen me…Love has called my name…I’ve been born again, into your family…Your blood flows through my veins…You split the sea, so I could walk right through it…All my fears were drowned in perfect love…You rescued me, so I could stand and sing…I am a child of God. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XxkNj5hcy5E)
This peace and joy I find deep in my heart comes from accepting what is… There are many things I do accept…..:
I accept… In the beginning God created the Heavens and the Earth – God IS! Genesis 1:1
I accept… But anyone who does not love does not know God, for God is love. I John 4:8
I accept… No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord. Nothing can separate us from God – Romans 8:39
I accept… You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in you, all whose thoughts are fixed on You! God is the author of Peace – Isaiah 26:3
I accept… The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. I will follow Him. Psalm 23:1
I accept… But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. He is sufficient to fill my needs. 2 Corinthians 12:9
I accept… Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits, who forgives all your iniquity, who heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from the pit, who crowns you with steadfast love and mercy. He forgives my sins, heals me and redeems me. Psalm 103:2-4.
I accept… Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. God gave his only Son, who is the way – truth and life. -John 14:6
I accept… Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God. Jesus is my foundation and finishes my faith – Hebrews 12:1-2
I accept… But you, O Lord, are a shield about me, my glory, and the lifter of my head. God protects me. Psalm 3:3
I accept… So now faith, hope, and love abide, these three; but the greatest of these is love. Love one another always! – I Corinthians 13:13
I accept… But he answered, “It is written, “‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.’” – God’s Word is all I need! Matthew 4:4