Reason to Drown in Bitterness & Survival.

Wild flower, PNW

Do you ever go through the days, surviving? Waiting for your 5 o'clock {or whatever it is} to arrive so you can just go home to sleep? Only to wake up the next morning, again barely surviving the day and looking forward only to the end. Getting through the week, looking forward to your Friday. Oh if only we could reach the end of..the day, the week, the season, the year. I think so often, "We are all just surviving..there could be so much more to every days."

When I worked at US Bank I heard this statement of relief every afternoon: "My day is almost over." And "Just getting through the day." I also often heard, "I just can't wait for Friday."

Constantly, I saw the yearning for the next end. Just get through life. The hearts of those around me craved to be out of the now and into the future, and when the "future" arrived, the response was to keep on wishing for the next phase of the day [week/season]. I was grieved by these words - saddened that, it seemed, no one was content or happy with where they are right here, right now.

We are always rushing, always busy, always stressing to get DONE. Done with what? Where are we all going? The other day at the coffee shop, I overheard a 30+ year man say these heavy words:

"I just can't wait for retirement. Then I can slow down and enjoy life, then I can actually be with my family. I work so hard for that retirement fund."

Oh my soul. He is missing out! By that time, his family won't be around. Heck, he may not be - you never know when you will take that last breath. You never know when the soul's dearest and nearest to you may swallow up and die. To wait 20-35 more years to enjoy what little life we have left sounds like hell on earth. Literally.

I was just told that a young wife & mother of two kids, each under the age of 3..she died. She was in a long boarding accident. You never know when the soul's dearest and nearest to you may swallow up and die.

Friends. There are hard seasons, bitter seasons, rocky rough and ragged seasons. Days and seasons we want to be over - sometimes those seasons seem unending. But can we pause and rethink our view? Our outlook? Our hearts themselves? Can we see the life we have as beautiful and bright, even when all seems lost? I know without a doubt that I won't regret choosing joy in the hardest of times, when looking back in 10-15-30 years from now. I do know that I would regret looking back to remember my response to life as bitter and angry; discontent, entitled, and selfishI hope to leave such a legacy of choosing the joy of Jesus, that my Grandkids have a generational habit built into their gene pool.

A generational habit of choosing joy even when.. Even when the most precious, innocent, little children live in hell itself, on this earth, and you can't do a thing about it but pray and trust Jesus. Even when you lose dear people within close proximity of time. Even when parents hurt you because they are hurting from deep within. Even if you often live paycheck to paycheck, in a moldy apartment or a ghetto janky house that may not be "the dream." Even when..whatever your situation may be, the list goes on.  Even when we have REASON to drown in anger, becoming so self-centered, so bitter, so...darkened...we access to choose the truest of true joys and hopes. Guys. This is the stuff that leads others to Jesus - when we have all the reason in the world to suffocate in bitterness and crave the "end" of everything, but we don't. We instead choose the genuine joy and hope unending, which is offered to us at every second of the day. Offered to us in the darkest of nights while walking this earthly world. If only we would choose to drink the cup of grace and keep our eyes on things ahead: Heaven.

Bird watching pnw

Peering up and ahead at Jesus makes this life worth it, it's when we stare our circumstances straight in the face, entering mere survival mode, that we are swallowed up in them, and unable to selflessly ove those around us.

There is a difference between looking ahead at Jesus, which brings confident hope, and just getting through life, which brings dissatisfaction. I only know because it's a constant battle for me, a wrestling match between myself and Jesus.

I went bird watching with a lovely woman the other day; she is part of our church community. The entire time I could not stop thanking God for every moment given. What sweet, calm, peaceful moments. What beauty my eyes and soul held. The grass and the flowers and the water and the birds and every single thing that my being soaked in...was good. It was good and it was from God.

Make time to choosingly soak in the beauty God has surrounded you with and let it bless your inner being. Let your heart soften into thanksgiving.

"All things bright and beautiful, All creatures great and small, All things wise and wonderful: The Lord God made them all.

See that little guy up in the top of the tree?

Bird watching in Corvallis

Each little flower that opens, Each little bird that sings, He made their glowing colors, He made their tiny wings.

Fields of grass, Corvallis

He gave us eyes to see them, And lips that we might tell How great is God Almighty, Who has made all things well.

Duck pond at Starker Arts Park in Corvallis, OR

The male ducks literally follow the female ducks around... they follow and they wait and they follow and they wait. It's like they want something.

Starker Arts park in Corvallis

All things bright and beautiful, All creatures great and small, All things wise and wonderful: The Lord God made them all."

All Things Bright & Beautiful by Cecil Frances Alexander

Bird watching in PNW Binculars, bird watching in PNW PNW PNW PNW PNW

This world is broken. It is full of sin and muck and yuck and pain and selfishness. Every human has reason to choose self-entitlement and bitterness.

We each have a daily choice to make: wallow in self pity {I choose this often}, waiting for the "end" or adventure. Journeying through the day as it really is: an adventure to be lived, a gift to unfold, beauty to behold. I crave to choose this over and over again - adventuring life. I fail often, but I get to walk in the assurance of grace and start over. The good news? That same grace is not only offered to you, but is chasing you ready to set you free.

Will you adventure life with me?

It would be my honor if you headed over to the side bar and hit the "like" button to see our posts in your newsfeed! You can also sign up for email subscriptions.