When life throws you a curveball, what do you do? I know the old cliche is “hit it out of the park.’ Let’s face it, that’s a cliche. Sometimes cliches can get on your nerves.
We women (and men) want to be in control. We like to know all the dots line up. We get peace in knowing each dot connects seamlessly to the next dot, and the beautiful picture is as glorious as we expected.
But, dear one. That isn’t life. Life isn’t a neat and clean.
Life is messy.
What do you do when your husband walks out on you? What do you do when your health fails? What do you do when your loved one dies unexpectedly? What do you do when your finances tank, a close relationship goes sour, or the boss walks in and tells you your job is over.
What. Do. You. Do?
Your life is MESSY.
Truthfully, if it’s clean, there’s probably two things wrong. You aren’t truthful with yourself, or your dead.
Because. Life. Is. Messy.
There’s one ground rule question you must answer in your heart and mind if you’re going to keep your sanity in this messy life.
Who is in control? Us or God?
Either God is in control or He isn’t. There is no middle ground.
I don’t write this from a spectator’s view. I write as one who has been out on the field of life with all it’s dirt, mud, and bugs. I’ve received some curveballs.
What are your curveballs?
I’ve been the young married woman desiring to have a child, but for some reason, my womb was closed. I agonized as I watched a young, teenage girl become “accidentally’ pregnant while my husband and I yearned for a child. When we finally became pregnant, my OB/GYN said it was a miracle.
My heart raced and ached when my husband called, and he thought he had a heart attack. The paramedics were on the scene along with several co-workers and many of the police department staff. He was in good hands. But, this was not what we had planned for either the short-term or the long-term.
My heart groaned as my husband, and I received a phone call when we were out of town that my dad had a massive heart attack while walking to church. That was a long drive back as we waited for news from the hospital.
When I received the call that paramedics loaded my mom into an ambulance because she had collapsed at my aunt’s house, my heart caved yet again.
When they doctor said my husband had blockages,
When I had unanswered health questions,
When we received the call our son had taken a handful of pills,
When our son called to tell us, he was getting a divorce……
This wasn’t how life was supposed to go. It wasn’t my ‘life’ picture I had in my head.
How to approach life’s curveballs
What do you do? I can only tell you what I did.
Proverbs 3:5-6 tells us, Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.
First, I acknowledge (again) that I DO BELIEVE God is in control. I don’t have to see the wind to know it’s there.
Secondly, I go to God’s word. I find a scripture to hold in my heart and mind. When the curveballs come (and they may feel like you are behind one of those automatic ball pitching machines) it’s not a time to fake your Faith. Listen, I’ve been there trying the ‘fake it’ route. Put on a smile, don’t let folks know you are hurting, worried, need help. Do you want to know what happens when you do that? You end up pushing folks away instead of embracing the HELP and LOVE people want to give you. But, that’s a topic for an entirely different post….Don’t fake it. Cry. Weep. Entrust your feelings to a caring friend or prayer group. Don’t try to ‘make it on your own.’
Lastly, don’t abandon your Faith. When you’re down, Satan whispers in ears all sorts of horrible and nasty things. Those things are meant to not only tear you up on the inside, but he’ll try to damage your relationship with Christ and with others. You MUST NOT listen to him.
Oh, and cry. It’s okay to cry, pound your fist, shake your fist at God, and cry more. Hey, if David can do it, we can too. I think God expects it from His children =)
I love the last scripture in Psalm 13.
“I will sing to the Lord because he is good to me.”
But, I don’t love it because of the verse alone. I love it because of the story above that verse. You see, if you read the scripture by itself, it appears to be one of those ‘feel good’ scriptures. It is. But there’s more to the story.
You need to read it in it’s context…
Psalm 13 (New Living Translation)
1 O Lord, how long will you forget me? Forever?
How long will you look the other way?
2 How long must I struggle with anguish in my soul,
with sorrow in my heart every day?
How long with my enemy have the upper hand?
3 Turn and answer me, O Lord my God!
Restore the sparkle to my eyes, or I will die.
4 Don’t let my enemies gloat, saying “We have defeated him!”
Don’t let them rejoice at my downfall.
5 But I trust in your unfailing love.
I will rejoice because you have rescued me.
6 I will sing to the Lord because he is good to me.
The psalmist complains. He feels God has withdrawn. Can’t you feel the heartache as he prays for comfort? The sparkle in his eyes has dimmed. The enemy has used the event to gloat. He begs God. How is he going to make it? What will he do?
He falls back on his faith. God’s mercy is the pillar of which he holds. God’s unfailing love.
And suddenly, eventually, comfort is restored. Nowhere does it say the bad thing was removed. But, his fears and complaints are now overshadowed with God’s goodness.
And he will sing because…
He. Is. Good. To. Me.
If you are going through a curveball in life, and need a prayer partner feel free to email me or put in your comments below. I’ll add you to my prayer list!
Kim Steadman is a wife, mother and proud Meme. She retired from corporate life to bring her heart, mind, body and soul home and to start her creative writing journey. Her writing works include “The Creative Prayer Journal” and “The Diary of a Recycled Dog.” She loves to help budding authors discover their writing gifts.