Yearning for Smooth Sailing

An experience from many moons ago… that means as much or more today!

Every time I open the refrigerator door, I’m greeted by a pool of water surrounding the vegetable drawer. The little hole in the back that’s supposed to drain excess moisture is plugged. So far, our attempts to fix the issue have been unsuccessful. So I sop up the water and groan about an old refrigerator that needs replacing.

As I thrfile7631292337511ow the wet towels into the washer, I pause as  the sound of my three-year-old daughter’s cough echoes across the house. “It isn’t even officially fall yet,” I grumble, closing the washer lid a little harder than necessary. Reports of widespread illness in the community make this cold seem more serious than the last one.

Walking past the kitchen table I can’t help but notice the stack of paperwork waiting for my undivided attention. My husband was forced to change jobs earlier in the year leaving our health insurance in limbo. Because of our daughter’s cystic fibrosis, it appears our only option for covering her is to apply for the state’s comprehensive insurance plan for chronic illnesses with it’s high premium and exorbitant deductible.

“Mommy, he’s here!” yells my three-year-old Jenna. Glad for any reason that let’s me put the insurance crisis on hold for even a moment, I hurry to the front door.

Another groan. It’s the man from Roto-Rooter. “Mrs. Steury? I hear you have a problem with your sewer line.” I show him to the backyard all the while praying the solution will be quick, uncomplicated and inexpensive.

By the time Jenna is tucked in for her nap, I’m emotionally and mentally exhausted. Too tired to even think, I stretch out on the couch and close my eyes. Several minutes of quiet my_photography_199soothe my weary mind until once again my thoughts can focus.

Although I am powerless to change the present circumstances of my life, I know that GOD is not. With the slightest touch of His outstretched hand, every one of these frustrating situations could be quickly and painlessly resolved. While I believe without a shadow of a doubt that He could choose to instantly solve every issue, I have doubts that He will.

Why? Because some lessons can only be learned in trying times. Sometimes important truths only become evident in the darkness of adversity. Many rough edges resist through all but the toughest of life’s dilemmas. These daily studies in patience, faith and trust have the power—under GOD’s authority—to make us stronger and more Christ-like.

While my mind accepts these truths, my heart still yearns for the tranquility of smooth sailing. No annoying dilemmas, no difficult decisions, no worrisome waiting.

And so we press on, fully assured that He loves us and is deeply concerned with every aspect of our lives. It is comforting to remember that His footsteps will not lead us where His grace cannot sustain us. His promise, “I will never leave you nor forsake you,” has proven true time and again and will continue to dsailboat_01o so.

Whether he chooses to miraculously resolve every situation in our lives or to use them to mold us into His likeness, the choice is His. It is enough that He promises peace in the midst of the storm. I would rather have that peace with all my current and as-yet-to-be-known issues than to be living a tranquil, problem-free life without His daily presence and provision. No contest whatsoever.

Some twenty-two years have passed since I put this experience to paper. It will come as no surprise that we survived those issues and went on to bigger and more challenging situations! All of which we also survived.

I like to think we are wiser and more trusting now. Yes, more trusting for sure. Hopefully, a little wiser. Definitely a lot grayer! I do believe if anything, our belief in GOD’s provision and compassion, His caring and power are even firmer.

Rarely does a day go by that I don’t find myself thinking, if not uttering aloud, how grateful and thankful I am that what happens in this life is not up to me but up to Him. His ways are not my ways nor are His thoughts my thoughts. And that’s a very good thing!

How about you? Does trust come easily OR are you a worrier?

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6 thoughts on “Yearning for Smooth Sailing

  1. Your post came at a good time for me. Just when I think I have all this trust issue figured out and handed up to Him, he gives me a new challenge harder than the last. And I find myself wallowing in the mire of anxiety once again. I do think His goal is to mature us, and to do that he tests us with harder and harder things. Sometimes I just wish the tests would subside for a while, but He has plans for me and they don’t include an easy life. (or why would we need Him) So on I go. Trusting, worrying, trusting, worrying….

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  2. Oh, Loraine, it can be a pattern we repeat so often! Progress can be slow in coming but over the long haul, we learn to worry less, trust more. Hopefully. 🙂

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  3. I used to think I wasn’t a worrier. Then I took a personalysis test at work and discovered the only reason I always expect things to go smoothly is because I plan for the worst and take every precaution to ensure it won’t happen.

    This year especially has driven home to me how prone I am to worry – it’s been trial after trial. And I’ve only gotten through by clinging to God and His scripture. Painful lessons are no fun! 😉

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    • Hi Sparks — It’s hard not to worry. I do think I’ve improved with age but it was a slow process. Some situations have come along that were SO BIG the only possible thing to do was leave it completely in GOD’s hands. After that trusting fully became a little easier. You’re right–painful lessons are NO fun.

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  4. This was a very helpful post, Beth. Thanks for sharing!

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