Last week we took our four-year-old twins to a doctor’s appointment for a check-up. Our daughter was excited, but fairly calm. Our son, on the other hand, demonstrated a major case of ants-in-the-pants! He combed over every inch of that examination room, up on the table, down on the floor, inspecting every nook and cranny.
By the time the physician’s assistant arrived, I was feeling quite flustered.
Then, because it was our first appointment at this office, she began to ask a battery of questions that required actual thinking, which is really hard to do when you are also trying to keep your rambunctious boy from destroying the room!
It’s not the first time I’ve felt such frustration with my sweet son.
Homeschooling for pre-K gives birth to those same feelings of frustration and inadequacy because our son is a very easily distracted learner (typical for his age)! Even throughout the day, when I’m trying to get his attention or correct his behavior, he pulls away from me, eager for the lesson to be over so that he can move on to better things.
I know he’s just being a four-year-old, caught up in his own little world of fun and furious activity.
I just didn’t realize how like him I am, until recently.
I wrote several weeks ago about waiting on the Lord in the midst of seasons of trial and about finding that light at the end of the tunnel, the hope we can only find in Him and in His purposes. But I must admit, sisters, that I’ve been so eager for the lesson to be over, to escape the trial and get on with what I want to do, that I’ve been an impatient learner.
I keep jumping up from the Father’s feet, scurrying away from this place of discomfort in an attempt to find my own way to peace and joy and rest, thinking that I’ve learned my lesson.
But He knows, He knows the hard work isn’t finished. He knows the lessons I still need to learn, so He patiently calls to me. And when I don’t listen, He leads me back to this place of physical and emotional trial to resume the lesson because…it’s what is best for me, even if I can’t see it in this moment.
He does this for me because He’s my Heavenly Father, perfectly loving and perfectly knowledgeable.
He loves me too much to let me continue down my own path when He knows there is a better way.
Just as I attempt to reason with and teach my active four-year-old son out of love for him, so my Heavenly Father yearns to teach me.
Of course, Satan would have me believe a host of lies about this place of trial:
It’s too painful.
It’s too difficult.
It’s too long.
I’m all alone.
But this week, the Lord gave me a few verses that perfectly fit my current circumstances:
2 Cor. 4:16-18
“So do not throw away your confidence; it will be richly rewarded.
You need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God,
you will receive what he has promised.” Hebrews 10:35-36
We throw away our confidence, my work-in-progress friends, when we give ear to the Enemy’s lies.
We throw our confidence when we (and I’m so guilty) wallow in self-pity. We throw away our confidence when we tell ourselves we can endure no longer.
We forget that we serve a loving Savior.
We forget that He promises to never leave nor forsake us.
We forget that our Great High Priest understands and sympathizes with our every pain!
We forget that He has plans to prosper us and not to harm us. We forget that our hope and strength can come from Him alone and instead convince ourselves that we must somehow manufacture them within us.
We throw away our confidence and sometimes the weight is so heavy, so, so heavy that we even lose heart.
But the Father, in His goodness, gave me this verse as well:
“Therefore we do not lose heart, but though our outer man is decaying,
yet our inner man is being renewed day by day.
For momentary, light affliction is producing for us an eternal weight of glory
far beyond all comparison,
while we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen;
for the things which are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal.”
2 Cor. 4:16-18
My physical body is really frustrating me lately. I’m dealing with a lengthy recovery (from the injury at Buttkill Falls), and lately I’ve had other medical issues as well. And I know many, many others who suffer daily even more so than I. But the lesson is hard right now, sisters, so hard that I’m tempted to throw away my confidence almost daily.
But we can’t lose heart or the lesson will not be learned! (And this is one I definitely don’t want to have to repeat!) 🙂
Our bodies may fail us; our children may fail us; our marriages may fail us; our finances may fail us; our churches may fail us; even our friends may fail us….but our inner selves can be renewed day by day if only we quit looking for escape.
We cannot pull away like impatient children who are too wrapped up in self to listen. We must learn to wait for the things that are not seen, the rewards, the promises that we stand upon. We must persevere!
Because even if the only thing we gain as reward from such trials is a closer, sweeter walk with Him, then it’s worth it, isn’t it? Even if we must wait until eternity to receive the reward, it’s worth it, isn’t it? He promises, the glory will be “far beyond all comparison.”
I want it, don’t you?
It will be worth it all when we see Jesus,
Life’s trials will seem so small when we see Christ;
One glimpse of His dear face all sorrow will erase,
So bravely run the race till we see Christ.
Let’s run bravely, sisters, not losing heart, not throwing away our confidence, persevering to the very end because it will be worth it all…
…when we see Jesus.
Thank you for sharing at The Weekend Brew! I remember the days when mine were little. Very challenging days, but the Lord was with me, especially when it felt so overwhelming. Keep pressing on!
Thanks for the ecouragement, Barbie! I’m trying to enjoy these two youngest blessings as much as possible!
Thank you for sharing this post. I needed to be reminded of Hebrews 10:35-36. Already wrote it down so that I can read it all week 🙂 Visiting from Still Saturday this morning. I pray that the week ahead will be a calmer one with better focus for your little man!
Have a blessed Sunday,
Joanne, thanks for stopping by and taking the time to leave a comment. 🙂 I hope your week goes well, too!
Hi Jen! Visiting from The Weekend Brew! I have a 5 year old girl that challenges me in this way and like you can see how very much I have been like her in the past. Always ready to finish the test and move onto the next thing. I’ve found the most impactful lessons of my life have been the ones where. I’ve waited the longest..even had to repeat the test a few times. But his grace is always sufficient. We come out stronger and more in love with him. Every time. Bless you as you wait and work with your little man.
Yes, His grace is sufficient – I have to constantly be reminded of that truth! I know when we get on the other side of this season, I’ll be grateful for the learning. Thanks for stopping by!
Thank you! Thank you!!! Just the encouragement I needed. Why is it that I continue to look within myself for the strength or ability to complete the tasks God has given me? Thank you for your insight. I think I’ll print this off to keep as a daily reminder in my planner. You continue to bless me with your blog. 🙂
Thanks, Andrea! Your enthusiasm has blessed me today. I appreciate your encouragement.
Carolyn Maslin says
Jenn. I love the posts that you have here. I would like to see you edit 6 months worth and publish them. It probably seems like an impossible task with a hyperactive toddler right now. I remember Simeon at that age. Despite all the movement, he was already beginning reading by kdg and covering chapter books by 1st grade. He learned on the fly! But it was all rather exhausting for me. And I only had 1 that age. This too shall pass.
Thanks, Carolyn. I’m not sure yet what cohesive theme the Lord might give to me if He wants these published. I’m still waiting on that. 🙂 I’m sure Simeon had you on the move even more than Micah does me!
What a beautiful way you have reminded me that all “this”, the trials, the hurts and disappointments, whatever we deal with, really are just temporary. It’s how we grow and learn from them that makes the difference. Being a mom of two and now a grandmother I can assure you that the time spent with them will bring your greatest blessings, even if there are those moments when you might want to pull your hair out! Be encouraged and trust in the Lord. He will see you through all the obstacles satan wants to throw your way. It will definitely be worth it all when we see Jesus! I’m going to hold a little closer to my confidence!
I’m so glad this spoke to you, Peggy! I’m trying to hold onto my confidence, too, in spite of these temporary trials. And a big yes to the blessings of children! They bring such joy to our lives, especially in the dark and difficult days that sometimes come our way. Thanks for the encouragement!
Lyli Dunbar (@3dlessons4life) says
I needed to read this. Thank you for sharing those Scriptures. They will me with hope. 🙂
Lyli, I am so glad that you found hope here today. Thanks for stopping by!