The theme this week on See Hear Love is bravery. Ironically, I composed most of this blog post from the inside of an MRI machine, trying to distract myself from my aching arm (the IV would not thread) and the noise (MRIs are surprisingly loud.)
For me, it’s easy to be brave when things are tough. In fact, the greater the crisis, the smoother things will be. I’ve lived though medical scares, depression, divorce, and dating violence. I’ve been a single mama and lost two homes. And while these times were not fun, God gave me the tools to survive them. As promised in Esther 4:14, I was made for such a time as that, and when the rubber hit the road I was a warrior.
I’ve also seen the hard things redeemed. A child, who might never have walked or talked, is a thriving middle-schooler. God put the right people in my path to save me from abuse. Plus, I found new love. During these hard times, Jeremiah 29:11 gave me comfort: “For I know the plans I have for you…. They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.” If we are temporarily in the crucible, it’s because refinement is part of God’s plan.
For me, it’s much harder to be brave when things are not in crisis. My struggle is to believe that “for such a time as this” applies to the good times too. I’m forever on the lookout for the thief intending to steal, kill and destroy, afraid to claim the rich and satisfying life promised in John 10:10.
We don’t really know what happened to Esther after the scripture ends, but many historians believe that she gave birth to a son, who eventually allowed the exiled Jews to rebuild the temple and restore their nation. It was a beautiful time of redemption and God made Esther for that time too.
What Cheryl said on Monday’s show really resonated with me. To paraphrase, “We can build a house of pain and we want to live there because it’s comfortable.” Oh, yes. I’m good at crisis and trauma. I didn’t even want the offered sedative in the MRI because I knew I could get some uninterrupted planning done during the 30 minute scan. The hard part for me comes later, when all is well. For me, bravery means accepting health, happiness, and love, knowing that it could be taken away. Bravery is accepting that when things are good and beautiful, I was made for that time too.
I need to walk into my birthright as the daughter of the King and enjoy the crown and the banquet. I need to claim the rich and satisfying life God promises. And I need to do so, knowing it could disappear.
Bravery means trusting God’s character and His promise of redemption. Bravery means accepting the ashes, the beauty, the trials, and the gifts. Bravery means accepting whatever comes our way, trusting that we were made – in God’s image – for such a time as this.