On the moving of my ever-lovin’ cheese.

20161219_081040-1-11440437858.jpgI went to a meeting recently where the speaker began by saying that we need to keep an open mind. Well, I’ve been Debi long enough to know that Debi just doesn’t do that well. As hard as I try to be a “look on the bright-side” kind of girl, my mind just doesn’t naturally go there.

Instead, my instinctive warning flags will shoot straight up and start flapping around, bracing me to already not like whatever is coming next.

I suppose this stems from me having an incredibly strong sense of realism. I can instantly spot the potential logistical problems with pretty much any new situation I’m placed in. This has actually come in handy many times over my life as I’ve avoided some circumstances that I’ve watched others run straight towards in their blind trust. Nope. Not Debi. I could see the problems with it before they ever even became problems.

So I’m thankful for it in that respect.

But what I’ve been thinking about recently is that this “gift” of mine is really based on the fact that I don’t like change. Especially lately. My life over the last several years has been plagued with several difficult, and mostly uninvited, changes. And I’m pretty much tired of it.

Looking back, though, I can see that my honest knee-jerk reaction to pretty much all of it has been and continues to be one long incredulously snarky “Wait. WHAT?!?!?”

A few examples for you:

Life: “Your happy nest is empty now. The kids have grown up. The seasons have changed. The page has turned. Life has moved on.”

Me: “Wait. WHAT?!?!?”

God: “I want you out in the world now. I want you to work harder than you’ve ever imagined. I want you to see pain. Real pain. I want you to help heal. I want you to point to my hope.”

Me: “Wait. WHAT?!?!?”

College: “For five years you’re mine. Mine. Forget life as a confident, accomplished adult. I want you to think my way now. I want you to drink from the blast of my firehose. And pay attention because there’s going to be a test at the end of it all. A big test.”

Me: “Wait. WHAT?!?!?”

Doctors: “Something strange is going on in your body. We need to watch this. Hopefully it’s just the stress of nursing school.”

Me: “Wait. WHAT?!?!?”

Graduation: “Okay. You’ve finally jumped through my hoops. Time to walk tall and flip that tassel. And remember that test? Yep. It’s time.”

Me: “Wait. WHAT?!?!?”

Licensing Board: “You did it! Now go find a job along with the other 9,000 newly-licensed RNs in Orlando. And remember, experience is everything.”

Me: “Wait. WHAT?!?!?”

Hospital: “We want you. Start date in 60 days. Now, forget everything you’ve just spent five years fighting to remember. We’re about to teach you ‘real nursing’.”

Me: “Wait. WHAT?!?!?”

Doctors: “We’ve finally figured it out. It’s Lupus.”

Me: “Wait. WHAT?!?!?”

Lupus: “Hello, it’s me. Let me show you what tired really is. I’ll be making everything you do twice as hard because now you’ll be both attacking AND defending yourself all at the same time. Remember the strength you once had? Well, I took it. The headaches? Nausea? Joint pains? They’re my gift to you. The rashes and mouth ulcers? Yep, from me, as well. Don’t worry, though, I’ll do most of my work from the inside, so nobody will even see me. They’ll think you’re just fine, but you’ll always know I’m here.”

Me: “Wait. WHAT?!?!?”

Doctors: “It’s going to be okay, Debi. Really. You can live life with this. You can still be a nurse. You can still function, mostly. Just choke down all your pills, stay out of the sun, stay rested, and, whatever you do … avoid stress. Oh, and plan to spend your free time sitting in waiting rooms. Easy.”

Me: “Wait. WHAT?!?!?”

Pills: “Hi. We’re here to help. Really. And just for kicks, we’ll be coming on board the very same day you start working as a nurse. How fun is that? Now, understand … it’ll take months before we help at all, but our side effects will keep you company while you wait. Just be patient, we’ll have you feeling better in no time at all … well, maybe … hopefully .”

Me: “Wait. WHAT?!?!?”

God: “You can do this, Debi. You’re on the right path. My path. Hold tight, though. You’re going to need me. It’s going to get a whole lot more difficult before it gets any easier. And, by the way, I want you to share your story. I want you to untuck all your ugly. I want you to let others see it. Remember? This is where you point to my hope.”

Me: “Wait. WHAT?!?!?”

So, fast forward five years. My story still continues to be plagued by the taunting of random changes. Sometimes I rant, sometimes I cry, sometimes I really just can’t help but laugh because of how God knows exactly where I need the most growth.

Sadly, though, much of the time I still continue to react with that same incredulous “Wait. WHAT?!?!?!?”

I really wish I could stop doing that, and I KNOW God wants me to do better. My faith and my hope should ideally be strong enough to accept each change – all the challenges, and every, single setback – as readily as I have my greedy hands stretched out to accept the all the fun and easy in life.

But obviously, I’ve still got a lot of growing to do. Thankfully, though, Jesus meets me there, anyways. Always full of grace, perpetually forgiving my moments of weakling faith.

And even though He continues to “move my cheese”, I know He’s walking ahead, beside, and behind me every, single step of the way. Just like He is with you, too.

He’s faithful to daily give each of us the strength we need to walk whatever personal pathway He’s set us on. You’re not doing even a second of any of this alone, my friends. You can trust that. And I’m so thankful that He brought us together right here in this very moment … so I can share this hope with you. Praise be.

Thanks for growing with me. ❤

This is the link to a special live version of “Times” by Tenth Avenue North. The lyrics speak to me as someone who consistently drops the ball. Listen for God’s response later, during the bridge of the song. The message is amazing. Please take a few moments and see what I mean. There’s some talking at the beginning, but the actual song starts at about 1:15 minutes. Merry Christmas.

“Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.”  (2 Corinthians 12:8-10)

4 thoughts on “On the moving of my ever-lovin’ cheese.

  1. It seems to me that each time a transition has entered your life, you have been surprised by it (a natural reaction we all have!), yet have relied on the Lord to get you through each change, even it was (and is) hard.

    Be gentle with yourself, my friend. God loves you just as you are. 💛✝️

    Liked by 1 person

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