One of my best friends in high school was Karen Ann Mary Yeo. We called her Yeo. (Never in my life have a met another person who could make you laugh until you cry at the drop of a hat.) Every so often she call me: “Hey, I bought a new dress. Plan something special so I can wear it.” And I would. At the time, this seemed like the most normal thing because it was Yeo. Now I realize that most of the planet would stand in the store, look at the dress and say “I can’t buy that. I don’t have anywhere to wear it.” Not Yeo, she would seize the day and take the rest of us along with her!
What about the rest of us who would shake our heads and leave the dress they loved on the rack? We could only see our life as it was, not as it could be.
What gets us stuck with no view of the possibilities on the horizon? I fear for most of us the thing that gets us stuck is the mirror. We see ourselves as we are instead of how we can be. Take our body. We know the body in the mirror should be slimmer, fitter, stronger, more rested, less stressed and dare I say healthier and yet too often we feel stuck with what we have.
Feeling stuck with our body may come from thoughts like:
- “I’ve never had a particularly good body.”
- “It could be worse.”
- “People would think I’m nuts if I started exercising.”
- “My spouse won’t change so how can I?”
- “At least my body’s better than theirs.”
- “It’s harder to change my body as I get older.”
- “Why bother. I’m such a mess it won’t help.”
That is what stuck sounds like. But guess what, God’s not about stuck. God’s about doing a new thing.
See, I am doing a new thing!
Now it springs up; do you not perceive it?
I am making a way in the wilderness
and streams in the wasteland. Isaiah 43:19
Love that verse!! God starts off with “See!” – look around! I’m here and I’m doing amazing things! Then He ends with “do you not perceive it?” God is pushing you to see the possibilities of the new things He wants in your life. Even for something that may feel difficult to improve like your health.
Did you see that God is doing these new things in the wilderness and the wasteland? Some of you know exactly what God’s talking about here, especially in terms of your health. Maybe you’ve survived difficult treatments or are facing a frightening procedure or even dealing with a chronic condition- these are wasteland and wilderness times for your body. But even there- even right there surrounded by struggles, God is doing a new thing. Lean on Jesus. Ask Him to lead you to do a new thing with your health so you may be the one to say “See? With God’s help, I am doing a new thing!” Praise God!