Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Choosing fear or trust: approaching life with hope

The sun has come up and a new day has begun. Yesterday's cold rain is nothing but a few puddles along the side of the road. Today's sky is full of bright hope.

Yesterday's work is past and today's is underway. Some of yesterday's questions are answered by today's arrival, and some are as hidden as tomorrow's sunrise.

Hard Lessons
I'm still learning midsts these years of my life. This is one of the lessons I garnered from our time living in Italy last fall: Life is to be approached from an attitude of trust, not fear. These options constantly present themselves. Will I rest in God's provision for my life, or assume that I must handle the stress on my own? That choice makes all the difference. For in those moments, we can choose to approach life with hope.

Far too often, I've approached these challenges as reasons for fear, rather than trust. Like a child who sees the physician as a person to dread...
--I've approached sources of pain as a challenge to my value, rather than a grace of healing.
--I've interpreted failures as explanations of my valuelessness.
--Challenges were not opportunities, but insults!
--Conflict was seen as condemnation, rather than communication.

Trusting or fearing?
Some days--such as that raincloud-covered-yesterday--shade the light of the sun so that I cannot see these opportunities to trust and grow and heal. And on other mornings, when spring's first-birdsong-filled-sunshine is winning the day, I feel like I get it...that perhaps I finally understand.

I guess life's lessons are applied only by intense effort. It's one thing to learn new truth, and another to practice that truth.

Perhaps you might join me in re-assessing how you approach hard things and difficult times? And maybe this beautiful spring season is a good time to begin.

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