I remember being a little girl and having such a love of people. I didn’t want to hurt them, or be hurt by them. I never understood why people hurt others. I felt so deeply for others that I would worry about them constantly. I felt like I could save them all. If I could just be kind, than I could make a world of difference to a person who was treated badly. I looked at my words as weapons. I knew they could be destructive to someone’s life if I didn’t guard them. At what point did I stop being this way? At what point did the world harden the heart that God made soft. I wasn’t born this way. I was born with love for all people. As I grew up I realized that I couldn’t save everyone, so I stopped trying. I realized that if I was too open with people, they could use my openness to hurt me. So I stopped being open to those who didn’t earn my trust. I realized that no matter how kind I was to others, they would still be unkind to me. So I stopped being kind. I retaliated against evil with evil. I came to a point where I realized that the young, innocent girl that was so loved by many was now loathed. That young girl grew up to push people away instead of pulling them towards her. It hurts to look at myself. It hurts to see what I have become. I became the product of this world. A world that says to protect yourself and let others look out for themselves. Once I turned away from God, I stopped being what he created me to be. LOVE….ACCEPTANCE….TRUST….TRUTH. I became the world. I became the one who hurts others. I became the one I was trying so hard to protect others from. I want to love others like a child. I want to have an unconditional love for everyone that God created. I don’t want to see my brothers and sisters as my foes. I want to see them as my blood in Christ. We are one in Christ!
Painting by Akiane Kramarik
If I had to describe marriage using a metaphor, I would say it is like a mountain climb. You start the climb with the best of intentions. So you’re climbing along, the sun is shining…..birds are chirping…things are going great. Then all of a sudden you look yonder and see storm clouds rolling in. “Wait a sec…not what I planned or was hoping for.” Well, you knew there was a chance of rain during your climb, but you hoped you would be the lucky one it didn’t happen to. However, here it is about to roll over your head. Isn’t that the way it goes in marriage? You have heard about everyone else’s problems, but those problems will never be your problems because you are SPECIAL! 🙂 You have the choice at this point to either stop climbing, or push through. Usually during the first storm, the choice is to push. However, after many storms, you are left wondering if this climb was even worth it. You forget why you started the climb to begin with because all you can focus on now is the fact that you are sick of fighting against the weather. You are wet….muddy and just want to give up. At this point, many people do give up. Some people will push through many storms while others will give up at the first loss of footing. Why do they give up? One reason is a fear of falling and having to start the climb again. Another reason is just being tired and worn out. People want to conquer the challenges of life without too much trouble. People will take on the challenge of a mountain climb….but only if it stays sunny. Only under their own terms will people carry out a challenge to the end. However, some people have very unrealistic terms. The fact of the matter is, you can plan a perfect climb by preparing and having all your gear. However, you cannot predict or control the weather.
So some folks might read that and ask “Why try? If there are going to be storms and I have no control than why should I make the effort?” What they fail to realize is that there is one who controls the storms. God! God has always had the power to control the weather, but no one has asked him to do so. Instead, people deal with the storms on their own which ultimately wears them down. Or, they run from the storms.
Marriage is full of many storms. However, it is not necessary for couples to face any storms alone. God says “I have control of the weather if you would only ask me for help. I can calm the storm. So if you find that you are in a marriage with difficulties, don’t try to conquer those challenges on your own. Don’t run from them. Say “God, I am climbing this mountain and the storm clouds are rolling in. I need you to push them away. If you can’t push them away, than at least shelter me while they pass by.” Every mountain has a peak. It’s a beautiful sight when you reach the top and look down at everything you have accomplished. You and your partner can look back at all the times you slipped and smile because you never stopped going. When you do reach the top, never forget to thank God. Don’t forget the times when he turned rain into sunshine.