Irrational thoughts set in after I survived seven hours of labor.
I’m done. That’s it. I’m going home.
That wasn’t an option since our son hadn’t been born yet. Still, my brain conjured up the possibility of a literal out-of-body experience.
Amazing how suffering can play with your mind. Especially when the struggles have been hard to endure. For too long. Like dealing with your child’s mental illness (MI).
Are you done? Do you fantasize about packing it in…running away from it all? Perhaps you dream of getting away. To rest under a palm tree in Hawaii and listen to the soothing sounds of the ocean as they wash all your cares away.
The Israelites understood suffering. So, God gave Moses a message for them.
“‘I will take you as my own people, and I will be your God. Then you will know that I am the Lord your God, who brought you out from under the yoke of the Egyptians. And I will bring you to the land I swore with uplifted hand to give to Abraham, to Isaac and to Jacob. I will give it to you as a possession. I am the Lord.’” Exodus 6:7-8
God kept His promise.
“God heard their groaning and he remembered his covenant with Abraham, with Isaac and with Jacob.” Exodus 2:24
“The Lord said, ‘I have indeed seen the misery of my people in Egypt. I have heard them crying out because of their slave drivers, and I am concerned about their suffering. So I have come down to rescue them from the hand of the Egyptians and to bring them up out of that land into a good and spacious land, a land flowing with milk and honey…’” Exodus 3:7-8
That same God hears your groaning and sees your misery. He’s concerned about your suffering. He has a promised land for you.
God gave me a taste of that milk and honey. My earthly promised land was the healing of my marriage. Howie and I just celebrated our 35th wedding anniversary at Joseph Ambler Inn bed and breakfast. Years ago, I never would have thought it possible. I was ready to pack it in. Couldn’t stand any more pain. Didn’t know how to forgive unconditionally.
But God, who made a way for us to reach the ultimate Promised Land in heaven, made a way for me to trust again. He restored our marriage, making it stronger than ever. We went to a bed and breakfast to mark the milestone and share our gratitude.
Maybe you’re still waiting to arrive at your promised land. Thankfully, we can trust in our good Shepherd to lead us to a peaceful place and refresh our soul. He “makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, he refreshes my soul… (and) anoints my head with oil…” Psalm 23:1-3, 5
Imagine that…God inviting us to spend time in His oasis and get treated in His spa! A free getaway made possible by simply entering into His presence.
Thank You that You hear my groaning, see my misery, and care about my suffering. Help me find time to read Your Word. To find encouragement and hear You speak to me. So that I can persevere. In Jesus’ name. Amen
During the days of trouble in our marriage, Steve & Annie Chapman’s songs helped me cling to the hope of restoration. Here’s one of them: “Turn Your Heart Toward Home”