Every Wednesday at noon in the state of Ohio sirens are tested by the Emergency Alert System and National Weather Service.
On radio devices and television the following message is usually broadcast, “This is a test, this is only a test for the next 60 seconds…”
Recently while shopping I heard a child in some other lane having a meltdown. Sounded like the child needed a nap! It is so hard not to be embarrassed when a child loses control and blasts the surrounding area with its discontent.
Then I remembered that when my children were very young and had a meltdown I would often recite to myself or to my husband, “This is a test. This is only a test. For the next 60 seconds WE’LL SEE WHO IS REALLY IN CHARGE HERE.”
In other words, would we cave to the meltdown or do what was needed in that moment. Care for our family’s needs or react to societal pressure to hush that child at any cost. Oh the troubles of parenting.
And now, there are no more children in our home. There are times though when my wailing over ‘things as they are’ rather than how I WANT them to be must be quieted before the LORD. I am trying to become aware of my discontent and realize it is an affront to my faith in God’s goodness. He is my Shepherd and is able to keep me regardless of the circumstances. I can create much misery and suffering in my life by wishing for things to be other than they are.
In Resilient by John Eldredge he insists we must “Keep our head.” On Page 34 he points out the following
“Let your fears, anxieties, anger or rage alert you that you’ve been taken hostage; stop and get your bearings.”
We could add brooding and other moodiness, too, as things that can take us hostage. In other words, to keep you head focus upon Jesus and the Word of God. Is this fear, etc. you are experiencing from God or the enemy of our souls? From self or the Father?
For the weapons of our warfare are not merely human, but they have divine power to destroy strongholds. We destroy arguments 5 and every proud obstacle raised up against the knowledge of God, and we take every thought captive to obey Christ.2 Corinthians 10:4-5 NRSV
Are you willing to use the weapons you have been given? Will you fix your eyes upon Jesus in such a way as to glorify His name regardless of how you feel about any given situation? We are given warning and instruction in Isaiah.
Rise up, you women who are at ease, hear my voice;Isaiah 32:9
you complacent daughters, listen to my speech.
Am I at ease? Complacent? Stuck in my feelings about things as they are? And if we are willing to listen to the voice of the LORD there is a promise at the end of the passage.
The effect of righteousness will be peace,Isaiah 32:17
and the result of righteousness, quietness and trust for ever.
Who couldn’t use more peace, quietness and trust? All of this is a discipline, an awareness of my thinking. It requires a determination not to just let my mind run wild with “if onlys” and other such nonsense. Things are as they are and my job is to obey Hebrews 12.
Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight and the sin that clings so closely, and let us run with perseverance the race that is set before us, 2 looking to Jesus the pioneer and perfecter of our faith, who for the sake of the joy that was set before him endured the cross, disregarding its shame, and has taken his seat at the right hand of the throne of God.
3 Consider him who endured such hostility against himself from sinners, so that you may not grow weary or lose heart. 4 In your struggle against sin you have not yet resisted to the point of shedding your blood.Hebrews 12:1-4 NRSV
Am I willing? Take this old girl-woman and help her to submit to God’s highest and best for her? Yes I am, with God’s help!