Do you like amusement parks?
I thought they were fun as a kid, but not so much as an adult.
Hot, crowded, lines, lost. Bumpy, twisty, whip-you-around, stomach-in-your-throat nausea. You hold on for dear life to the stranger next to you who’s just as freaked out as you are. You get off the rides with your head spinning and your stomach spitting.
What’s so amusing about it all?
Doesn’t life have enough of its own up-and-down, whip-you-around thrills?
I bet you’ve been on some of your own crazy rides. The last few months have
been a bit of a wild ride for me. No more wild than many of you, I’m sure. I’d
love to hear which ride you’d describe yours as.
If I was to describe mine, I’d call it a roller coaster – my dad’s death, my husband’s open heart surgery, hurricane Irma. Those were some mountains, and each had its own bumpy twists and turns with smaller hills in between. Each drop had me white-knuckled braced not knowing what was around each turn. My eyes were as big around as snow cones, sometimes melting ones. The clatter seemed soul-deafening.
I guess life is sort of like an amusement park. Some of it is smooth and fun, but life, like a roller coaster, can be full of hills and valleys, bumpy twists and turn-you-upside-down loop-de-loops. It never seems to be calm and smooth for long. And just when you think a ride is over, up comes another hill to climb with its stomach-relocating fall.
Show me the way to the lazy river, please!
Thankfully, we can buy wrist bands for nausea or Dramamine to stop our head from spinning for amusement park rides. But those won’t help for life’s wild rides. So what can we do to balance our equilibrium?
The answer is a good dose of prayer to keep us steady, along with God’s map of the park, the Bible.
Sometimes we’d like that map to show us the exit, just as Paul asked God to take away the thorn in his flesh. (He wanted the lazy river, too.) But God’s reply was, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.” 2 Corinthians 12:9a NKJV
God’s strength: Dunamis – miraculous, mighty power. Like dynamite!
Made perfect: Teleitai – complete, fulfilled
When we are filled with and operate on our own limited strength, we leave little room for His unlimited, dynamite-like strength.
When we are weak, then we are strong (verse 10).
So, I will gladly boast of my weakness (2 Corinthians 12:9b) – At each hill I’ve had to climb, God has given me His strength when I thought I had none left. He held me steady as I clung to Him for dear life. I felt His peace at each turn. His peace, which is beyond human comprehension (Philippians 4:6-7), guarded my heart from anxiety, fear and despair – by His dunamis power.
How will we know God’s power if we spend all our time on the lazy river? (click to tweet)
Has life put you on a wild ride you didn’t choose to be on, one that’s left you wounded, sick or dazed? Hold on for dear life to Jesus. God has promised that with His power, when we are pressed with troubles, we will not be crushed. We may be perplexed, but not driven to despair. Persecuted, but never abandoned by God. And we may get knocked down, but we will not be destroyed. (2 Corinthians 4:7-9)
Everything in life’s park may not be fun, but when life hands you more shrills than thrills, cling to Jesus in prayer and in His Word.
And know that every now and then, you’ll get to have a peaceful ride on the lazy river.
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Thanks so much for stopping by. Many blessings to you!
I am writing a six-week Bible study called Pursuing God in P.R.A.Y.E.R. – Six Steps to Prevailing Prayer. I would love to share the first week with you free and keep you posted of publication. Just send me an email at email@example.com and mention the code FREE1st.