Wednesday, July 19, 2006

It's Just Not that Simple

The problem with difficulty is that it simply isn't simple. It would be easy to be able to say that difficulty is a bad thing caused by human beings and that is that. The problem is that, in reality, it isn't that simple. Any moment of difficulty is a swirl of seemingly contradictory things that somehow you are dealing with everyday.

Sometimes by your own stupidity or irresponsibility you make your own bad moment. Sometimes difficulty is the result of dealing poorly with things that are in your control, but not always. Nicole was not acting irresponsibly and the thing that happened to her involved many things that were out of her control.

Sometimes a bad thing is just a bad thing and there is nothing else to say. Sometimes evil is evil and without any apparent redeeming value, but not always. Sometimes very bad things result in very good things. Sometimes, in what seem to be horrible, life-changing moments, the seeds of a flower-bed of a wonderful new life are planted and begin to grow.

Sometimes pain is a horrible debilitating thing that robs you of life and vitality. Sometimes pain is just pain, but not always. Sometimes pain is a God-given warning that something important has gone wrong. Sometimes the greatest of pains produces the greatest of thanks for things that without the pain would not even have been noticed.

Sometimes difficulty affords you time to get out of the rat-race and re-evaluate and re-assess. Sometimes the times of contemplation in difficulty redirect and nourish the soul, but not always. Sometimes pain makes you more susceptible to anger, self-pity, bitterness, and the cancerous desire for vengeance.

Sometimes difficulty gives you time to be creative and productive. Sometimes it allows you to discover previously uncovered gifts and abilities, but not always. Sometimes in moments of pain all you want to do is numb your mind and distract your soul and so you do anything to escape the drudgry of another 16 hours before the next time to sleep.

Sometimes difficulty introduces you to profound life questions that are both worth asking and answering. Sometimes pain makes you a better philosopher and theologian, but not always. Sometimes difficulty causes you to be trapped in the dark hallway of questions that are easily asked, but cannot be answered. Sometimes the deepest pain of difficulty is the pain of living in the middle of its mysteries.

Sometimes difficulty invites you to a new way and a fresh start. Sometimes difficulty results in postive transitions and benefical new plans, but not always. Sometimes in difficulty you feel like you've lost complete control over your life and the ablility to plan. Sometimes in difficulty it seems like someone has put your life on hold.

Difficulty is not a simple experience. In times of suffering, you don't deal with any of these things separately. They are the swirl that you live in the middle of everyday. And in the middle of it all it is easy to lose your bearings. The problem with difficulty is that it is not just one thing, it is a lot of seemingly contradictory things you are required to deal with all at once. Pray that we would not lose our bearings in the middle of the swirl.


Blogger DavidBarcelo said...

I'm very glad to read about Nicole's recovery. We'll continue praying for you all. With love, David & Elisabet Barcelo (Spain)

5:27 AM  
Blogger Care Groupie said...

I am so touched by each post...I cannot begin to express what an affect these posts are having on my life. This trial in your lives-The Tripp family has not been in vain! God HAS and IS using your trial for HIS glory. I am moved to tears as I read and am so aware of God's glorious grace on your lives...and mine...and I am thankful for your suffering...I am in FAITH for who you will become and are becoming through this trial...God is most glorified in you when you are MOST satisfied in Him...
At this time in my life, God has spoke to my heart through each post.Thank-you for sharing your intimate journey through your struggles with understanding God's hand...I for one am a grateful recipient! We are praying for you and your family and will continue with you as you walk this out!

5:38 AM  

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