This past April, there was a hailstorm that hit our neighborhood. We’ve had hail storms before, but nothing like this one. The hail was about the size of a golf ball, some smaller even, but the force of the wind pelting it into the house was what made it so fierce. From inside our home, it was so loud I wondered if the hail was going to bust clean through and end up in our living room! Even still, we didn’t realize the extent of the damage it had caused. We suspected damage to our vehicles (which is why my darling husband rushed outside and risked his life for that of his jeep to pull it into the garage), but when we stepped outside to assess the damage to my red van, we were shocked to find complete HOLES in our house. There were dings, dents, and holes in our roof, siding, garage door, front door, gutters, mailbox, shed, and deck. Not to mention the plants and mulch I had JUST spread and planted were washed away. The brand new solar lights I had just put out were busted. Even the doorbell no longer worked. It was so bizarre to step out alongside neighbors who were also assessing the damage in the dusky light. As we looked around, our entire neighborhood looked like a war had taken place. The homes looked like swiss cheese. And the culprit? These little balls of ice.
One of these little balls of hail would not have caused much ruckus around here. It might cause a single ding, but we would just keep moving. But when you put hundreds of them together with a fierce wind behind them….lookout! There’s going to be some damage.
Have you ever felt like your spirit and/or emotions…..like they must look like swiss cheese? You have taken the hits, Some bigger than others, but after a while you think one more hit is going to kill you. I know I have. We have had a lot of hits recently, and I kept making conscious decisions to keep my chin up. Keep thinking positive. Don’t give up. But then just when you think you are recovering from the hits, one big one takes you to your knees. And at least for a moment, you give in. You give in to the runaway thoughts. The thoughts that take you places you don’t want to go, but you can’t help yourself. For me the thoughts went something like this…..
~nothing you are doing is making any difference
~people are criticizing you b/c you’re doing it all wrong
~you are too disorganized and too lazy to really accomplish anything
~you never finish anything
~you are so scatterbrained
~a good mother can juggle it all, and her tables are never sticky.
~you are so not together, and look where it’s gotten you.
~who do you think you are trying to encourage and lead others when you are such a mess yourself
~you might as well quit trying.
Ouch! It is not fun to tell you those ugly thoughts that have crossed my mind in my weakest moments. I wish I could tell you that I don’t struggle with such thoughts ever because I love Jesus. Sigh.
So what do we do when we’ve taken the hits and our spirit starts to sag, the lies get louder, and our hearts weep?
We look to our healer. The one who bottles our every tear. The one who came to remove our shame, not pile it on us. Sweet Jesus. Just saying His name brings me comfort. You see, He knows I’m weak, He knows I’m disorganized. He knows my tables are sticky….and He not only loves me anyways, He wants to use my weaknesses as well as my strengths, to draw others to Himself. It’s not about me…..it’s about HIm.
So when those little balls of ice hit me, I can stand. I can stand because my Jesus holds me up. He holds me up with His truth, His grace, and His love. That’s WHO HE IS. So those voices that don’t sound like truth, grace, and love….THEY AREN’T HIM! And I won’t receive them into my spirit. And I hope you won’t either.
After that hailstorm I heard a lot of murmuring and complaining around…..the hassles of dealing with insurance companies, the inconvenience of flat tires due to all the construction, even complaints about the colors of siding neighbors had chosen for their replacements…..SERIOUSLY? We can choose to look at that side of things, or we can choose another way…..Discouragement is not the boss of me. Lies are not the boss of me. Satan is not the boss of me. My emotions are not the boss of me. JESUS…..now that’s my KING. That’s the voice I want to hear, the one I want to follow.
Because of that hailstorm, I have a brand new roof, siding, shed, garage door, front door, gutters, and deck stain. I went to bed with my family intact, safe and sound. God can do the same for us…..with all of those dings, dents, and holes in our hearts and spirits….He sets us on firm ground. He brings order to chaos. He brings truth to lies, light to darkness, and life to the discouraged. He makes all things new. Check out this song by Gungor…..and let God speak to you His truth, His love, and His grace.
“The Lord Himself will fight for you, just stay calm”.