The fact is, we have all fallen away at one time or another to one degree or another. Some may hide it better than others but bravado is not bravery and denial does not bring healing. We have all been like Thomas, needing to not just see the wounds but touch the scars and still finding it difficult to believe. And we have also been like Peter, eagerly stepping out onto the crashing waves only to find ourselves sinking in a whirlpool of fear and confusion.
The events of the past inform those of the present and the future is a consequence of both. Perspective is the salve that lessens the pain and strengthens the healing. I have learned that I am a product not only of the pain I have experienced but also of the joy and without one, there cannot be the other. We will never understand true joy if we do not experience the depths of suffering and we will never learn from the suffering if we do not believe that joy comes in the morning.
I believe that the Lord’s hand moves people and events in and out of our lives in order to perfect his will in us. If I believe that the Lord’s hand moves me from beginning to end, and I do, then who am I to question the tool that is in his hand. You can’t blame the hammer for pounding the nail. I could scream to high heaven about the wrongs that have been done to me and demand recompense, and there have been times that I have done just that. It has gotten me nowhere.
Each and every event in my life has been a crossroad and I have been given the choice: stay on this road that I know the Lord has placed me on or turn off and seek my own will. It has been an easy choice to press on through the good times but not so easy to willingly walk into the deep, dark places. The only thing that has enabled me choose the struggle is the belief that he is in the joy as well as the pain…and wherever he is, is where I want and need to be.