I got some advise from a fellow blogger that those who read a blog relate most to reality, whether it be good or bad. In light of that, I have decided to share my heart with you. I've not written much recently because I didn't want you to leave this blog feeling more depressed than when you came. I didn't have much encouragement to share with you. Life just happens to be discouraging right now and I am feeling the weight of it. I'm sure you have all had bad days and I know you have all had hard times, so who wants to go somewhere for encouragement and read of someone else's trials? Lest you get the idea I am fishing for sympathy, let me share with you some things I am learning through this season of "hard times".
Sometimes God makes our nest uncomfortable to teach us to fly. Have you ever glimpsed inside an eagle's nest? I've never seen one up close; only in pictures. When a mother eagle builds her nest high on the cliff she begins with broken branches, thorns, sharp rocks, and other things that would seem to the onlooker that this would not be suitable to raise the young eaglets. She's not finished yet. As you look more carefully you will see her adding a thick lining of feathers, wool, and other soft things making it more comfortable for the eggs.
Somewhere around two months of age the growing eaglets reach flying age. They are reluctant to leave because they are comfortable, have the luxury of meals handed to them, and a warm and cozy momma to snuggle up to at night. That's when the mother eagle begins to stir up the nest. She knows that in order to learn to fly, the young eaglets must learn to live on their own and get outside of their comfort zone. Lovingly, her strong talons begin to pull at the thick carpet of fur and feathers, bringing the sharp rocks and thorns closer to the eaglets. As more of the comfort gets plucked away, the nest becomes more unbearable for the young eagles. Eventually, this prompts the growing eagles to leave their once-comfortable home and move on to bigger and better things.
When it comes to growing, sometimes God uses pretty powerful motivators, pain and hard times, to push us out of our "nest". He either causes it to happen or allows it to happen. Just like the mother eagle motivates her eaglets to launch out on their own, growing towards their full potential, God may use pain and hard times in our life to motivate us. He stirs up our nest to help us move out of our comfort zone to reach our full potential in Him and become what He has planned for us.
I didn't want to leave my nest. I was comfortable. Life was good. We were working well in what we thought was exactly what God wanted us to do. Then we began to experience some prickly thorns, sharp rocks and broken branches. We tried to move to the other side of the nest, but it was the same there. Finally we had to realize this: God is stirring the nest to motivate us to grow! The pain and suffering is going to be a good thing...someday. Right now it still hurts, but there is this promise: He will never leave us or forsake us. I pray that I will use these circumstances as an opportunity to grow to become just what God wants me to be...right now!
Now for the nearly impossible part of this whole journey, living out James 1:2-4. Facing it all with a joyful heart. I'm failing miserably, but I know that tomorrow is a new day with a new set of chances to be joyful in the midst of "hard times". I will keep trying. I will breathe, smile everytime I can, bask in the goodness of God's Word and His promises, and allow God to teach me to grow!
I hope you leave today somewhat encouraged!