Hitting The Wall

stone-wall

We all have moments… days… seasons, even, when we “hit the wall” so to speak. Professionally, emotionally, spiritually, creatively, financially… there are a thousand obstacles, it seems, to our progress.  And there are at least another thousand cliches that attempt to reduce our obstacles to a simple formula for relief.  And frankly, when I’m trying to navigate through life’s big questions, the last thing I want to hear is some trite quote about how my attitude determines my altitude… or how when God closes a door He opens a window.  Maybe those motivational nuggets have a place, (although I can’t, for the life of me, think of what that place might be other than the flames of hell), but their place is most certainly not in the middle of questions for which there are no simple or immediate answers.

So, today, I just want to say that if you feel like you’re over your head in life’s challenges, you are not alone.  I am right there with you.  And I’m finding that the long season of widespread challenges in my life are digging out everything pretentious, everything flimsy, and definitely everything temporary.  It’s not a comfortable journey and relief isn’t immediate… but believe it or not, it’s a good thing!

A couple years ago, I prayed that we would somehow help our children not to become spoiled… and that prayer has been answered.  Scott lost his job.  Twice.  Am I rethinking that prayer?  No.  But is this season fun?  No again.  It is, however, a direct and specific answer to a sincere prayer.  As a result of this season, we are becoming more resourceful, we are attaining a level of closeness we have never experienced, and there’s a growing sense of gratitude for life and unconditional love that might have otherwise gone unexcavated.

I’ve asked God over and over again what He wants from me.  And apparently, He REALLY wants my trust.  I’d much prefer to be self-sufficient which, as it turns out, is the opposite of faith.  So when I’m tempted to come up with a man-made solution to my questions and challenges, I keep hitting the same walls over and over again.

I don’t know where you are in life, but I know that we all have a limited supply of emotional and physical resources.  Everything runs dry eventually — everything EXCEPT our Creator’s resources.  This is the same God who literally and figuratively creates “streams in the wasteland” according to Isaiah 43.  Though I’ve heard the following passage a million times in various translations, today it’s as if these words are written here (from The Message) in a letter so fresh to my circumstances that the ink seems wet.  This is no over-simplified cliche.  This is the reality of a God who created us with purpose and who has charted out a course that is not about our comfort… but our growth and our trust.

“Forget about what’s happened;
don’t keep going over old history.
Be alert, be present. I’m about to do something brand-new.
It’s bursting out! Don’t you see it?
There it is! I’m making a road through the desert,
rivers in the badlands.
Wild animals will say ‘Thank you!’
—the coyotes and the buzzards—
Because I provided water in the desert,
rivers through the sun-baked earth…”

Trusting is hard.  REALLY hard.  But so is the wall we keep hitting when we refuse to trust in a faithful, dependable God who has proven Himself to be the only Source in Whom there is no end.

10 thoughts on “Hitting The Wall

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  1. This is one of your absolute best, Em! I love the way you just spit out what so many of us are thinking. Tkank God for your talent, your wisdom, and your love of God.

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  2. Wow! You have a wonderful way with words but even more importantly the message you bring forward seems so obvious. Why didn’t I see it that way to begin with? Thank You for being His messenger and His servant! You are a gift Emily. I appreciate you!!

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  3. Love this post, Emily! I think we all go through times like this when trust is so needed but seemingly difficult to come by. Thank you for sharing this. I needed to hear it today. Exodus 14:14 is something I’ve kept in my mind lately. When things are going on and raging around us, we are so tempted to want to be self-sufficient, like you said. This verse reminds me that I do not have to try so hard to fight my own “battles.” Hope it encourages you also.

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  4. Wow, you have articulated exactly how I have been feeling lately. I feel emotionally spent, having rehashed some personal struggles. I am tired of obsessing about them, crying about them, and talking about them with my friends and therapist. I finally have laid everything at Christ’s feet because I cannot get through this without Him. I simply cannot, and for the first time in my life, my prayer has really shown me how utterly I depend on God. (Note: I have only been a Christian for a few years.) I usually praise God, and bless Him, and thank Him for what He has done for me. But now I am coming to realize that I utterly depend on Him, and I will never find any sort of healing without Him.

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  5. Thanks Emily…..my head has been going around and around about different things…..nothing drastic or life threating but…just stuff. I have been thinking about my children and grand children and wondering if they are headed in the right direction with their life. They all have jobs, or are in school and they are all healthy and well for which I’m very thankful. So….your blog seem to help clear my head a little…I’ve decide to turn it all over to God and just let him worry about…lol…he won’t worry…he will just take care of it for me. I can just hear him say “come on Nettye forget the little stuff…I’ll take care of it for you”. Be happy….Thanks again Emily Gods Blessing on you and your family.

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  6. Emily, you don’t know how much I needed to hear these word’s at this time in my life..It was right on time..
    Thank you for useing you God given talent to write these amazing blog’s that reaches out to help so many people. When I grow up I want to be a writer just like you!!!
    Your amazing..!!!

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  7. Em, as you know I have been struggling with “things” for a while now and while in my head, I know that God is in control, it seems my heart has “lost it”. Thank you for this blog, it spoke directly to my heart and has given it hope again. I join the others in thanking God for using you to share His word and your insight to them. As I have told you, it never ceases to amaze me that you have such a gift from God to articulate so clearly and simply (and I mean that in the best of ways) His Word and Way.

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  8. Emily, That could not have come at a better time. I have some major things coming up and I am really trying to give everything to God, I just haven’t figured out how to leave it with him yet. I guess am still a work in progress. Thank you again for making me think about the thinks that I need to work on in my life. You are the best.

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  9. Just now getting a chance to read your blog & maybe it’s because of God’s timing. Maybe I needed to read it more today than the actual day you wrote it. I believe we all have moments like this if we are honest. It’s tough but it takes difficult times for us to grow. (well at least it does for me because I’m so stubborn) Sometimes I think we need to be stripped down to the bare necessities to realize what we really have & to appreciate them. I love how you can word & phrase things. God bestows on each & every one of us talents & you, my friend, were given the talent/gift of expression in writing & in words. I’m thankful you give HIM the glory for it.
    Prayers, thoughts & love.

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