We all go through seasons of life that range from mountaintop highs to deep valley lows. This winter certainly hasn't been a deep valley for me, but it has been dark and gloomy. It reminded me that we all have events in our lives that leave stone bruises on our hearts. You remember stone bruises. You used to get them when you walked barefoot as a kid. You stepped on a rock or stone and it hurt in the moment, but really didn't leave a mark. Then, later, you moved your foot or stepped on that certain spot, and there it was, the pain you thought was gone.
I woke one morning this week to the sight of dogwoods blooming outside my bedroom window, and I can't express how thankful that made me. I love spring. It is, hands down, my favorite time of year. I sneeze my way through it, but what a small price to pay for spring! Spring is a reminder of the faithfulness of God. How, every year, no matter how cold or dark the winter was, He'll bring spring to us again. We just have to soldier through those months of cold and darkness and trust Him. He's ever faithful. This week has been a much needed reminder of that.
Life is tough. Sometimes, too tough. As I've gotten older, I've realized the fragility of life and how whimsical tragedy is. Darkness touches us all. Many that I love are going through very dark seasons, death of a loved one, divorce, loneliness, financial crises, serious illness, chronic pain, watching beloved parents decline. It makes my dark path seem bright in comparison.
So, I pray. I search for reminders that God is faithful, and when you're looking for them, you're sure to find them. Gary & I went for a hike today at Black Creek. He has taken on my training (I'm sure you'll hear more about that in upcoming weeks) and today was a five mile easy hike. Here are some signs of God's faithfulness that we saw on the trail.
If you are going through a dark time in your life, start looking for signs of His faithfulness. I promise, they are all around you. We'll always have those stone bruises on our hearts, but there are wonderful, life affirming ways to ease them. Look for them. Reach out and take them.
3 he refreshes my soul. He guides me along the right paths for his name’s sake. 4 Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me. 5 You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows.Psalm 23: 3-5