I have been reading through the book One Thousand Gifts by: Ann Voskamp with a few women from church. We were discussing the difference of lamenting to God versus complaining to God. The author says a lament is a cry of belief in a good God, a God who has His ear to our hearts, a God who transfigures the ugly into beauty. A complaint is the bitter howl of unbelief in any benevolent God in this moment, a distrust in the love-beat of the Father's heart. * While we were having the discussion this story (anaolgy) came to mind.
Brian and I went rock climbing the other day. This is not something that we do regularly so I was really feeling the fatigue in my legs and arms. I was on my last climb for the day and then we were going to get lunch. I was about half way up and it was getting really hard for me. I was tired, my fingers hurt and lunch was sounding really good. I was thinking, "should I just give up and go back down or should I finish this one?" Quitting was not really an option for me so I decided to finish it. I tried to grab one more hold. It just seemed too difficult! This climb was a bit tougher than others I had done that day. The holds were either much smaller or pretty smooth. Either way it was difficult to grasp onto them. I sat back into my harness to take a little break. I had already made the decission to finish but the idea of quitting was pressing into my thoughts. I just didn't know how I was going to do this all by myself.
Then it clicked!!! I was not all alone. Brian was there with me. Where I was, pressed tight to the wall, I was having trouble seeing the bigger picture. I could not seem to find the best holds/steps for my tired arms/legs. So I hollered down to Brian, "where do I go from here?" What an amazing step that was. I was able to let go of my inner struggle and listen to him. From his vantage point he was able to see the whole wall. He confidently guided me by letting me know where the next hold was. He was albe to tell me how close or how far it was to get to the easier holds so that I did not have to strain my already tired body. By listening to him and pushing my body I was able to make it to the top of that wall.
How much does that make you think of our God. He is so big and so amazing!! He can see the whole wall. He can see the BIGGER picture. When we are exhausted and worn out by life. When we feel so tired that we can't continue. When we can only think of quitting because we don't know what to do. When we feel all alone. We can just holler out to God! He will lovingly guide us to our next step and our next one(s) after that. God wants us to succeed. He says "For I know the plans I have for you, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." Jeremiah 29:11 (italics are all mine) All we have to do is take that step and holler out to him!
* Voskamp, Ann. One Thousand Gifts. Zondervan Publishing, 2010. Page 175.