I sunk down to my nose in an oatmeal bath, hoping to wash away the aches and pains of the day. But these weren’t physical aches, so the oatmeal didn’t do much, but the soak sure did.
I sat quietly. Silently, in fact. No sweet baby sounds, she was sleeping. No background noise, no book, no magazine. Just silence and stillness.
I pondered the ebb and flow of life and death, of grief and healing.
I thought about monotony and the struggle to find joy in the everyday moments.
I thought about loneliness, and how it ravages hearts and spirits.
I thought about how some of us become victorious over our trials, and some of us succumb to them, and how both of these outcomes are honorable. Because either way, you faced them, you fought them. Maybe you faced them alone. Maybe your tribe held you the entire way. But you did it.
The outcome I fear, even more than loss, is indifference.
I fear the possibility of merely trudging through life as the trials taunt me from all corners, but I never look up to face them. Because I’m paralyzed with fear of what I might encounter.
And the worst part? By keeping my head down, I’m unable to see that behind the trials is a tribe of warriors.
The hardships might feel like giants. Like mountains. Unmovable, unshakable. But behind them stand the warriors of Grace. Mercy. Forgiveness. Family. Love. Joy. Laughter. And trial and difficulty are no match for these warriors.
We may feel fear, or doubt, or sorrow, but it’s our calling to walk through, anyway. To face the trials knowing that our best life is on the other side, and that even as we walk through the valleys, facing the demons, we’re being held by the God who crafted the universe. He’s not afraid.
There will be times when it’ll feel like a walk in the park, and other times it’ll feel like we’re scaling Everest barefoot. There will be days of crawling and days of running, days where we have to be carried through.
But as long as we stand to face the trials, we can take comfort in knowing that there is another side. And on the other side is a reprieve. A resting place where the people we love and the life we are called to live are waiting for us with open arms.
So look up.