“No matter if it is a marathon or a sprint you still need to be [well] hydrated.” – mom
What’s that called ? Being well watered. My mom could more aptly be titled “doctor mom,” with her most frequent cure-all being “you need to drink more water !” And most times (if not all the time) she was right.
Being faced with an onslaught of difficult trials in the first 2 years of marriage has certainly revealed how important it is to be well watered. We have faced illnesses, surgeries, infertility, and the normal marriage woes of learning to communicate & battle our own selfishness. Spiritually you see the question arise over and over : “Is Jesus enough?” You know the answer must be yes, but truly believing this is more than just a verbal agreement, it must be dug down deep. And as you journey, one has to ask,
“How am I abiding in Jesus?”
“How am I keeping myself in the love of God?”
Marriage has become a proving ground for whether I truly believe what I have professed to believe in faith. I’ve realized the only thing that will keep me going is to stay well watered, to abide in Jesus – storing up His word & being honest in prayer to be ready to fight. However there are seasons & moments like now where I find myself gasping for air from all of the aforementioned struggles weighing in- especially infertility on top of my own mental struggles of depression & anxiety.
For 2 weeks I have been in a place between “Lord please help me” and a sinfully nostalgic look at past years, months, or weeks where I felt a deeper joy, peace and contentment pursuing the Lord.
And this is where I realize the craftiness of the enemy. He’s waiting. For that moment you’re parched & dehydrated. He’s waiting for that moment you let the reel of your thoughts run wild, neglecting to take every thought captive. He is waiting to watch, perhaps with popcorn as you self destruct due to the sinful nature of your flesh, unchecked by the Spirit.
If you look up symptoms of dehydration you’ll find things like: feeling thirsty, feeling dizzy or tired … And admonition to drink whenever you feel dehydration symptoms & to take small sips if you feel sick or have been sick- working up to drinking more.
As I often battle literal dehydration, I also see how this has showed up battling long term illnesses, trials & suffering : We have to continue to take small sips when we feel sick, fighting the temptation to cease the work to persevere. How ?
- Meditate on Gods Word. Commit to small sips and pray for your desire to be increased- you will thirst for the living water which flows from an eternal well that never runs dry.
- Pray with others, letting them into how you’re prospering or struggling to dig in – be honest with yourself & others
- Rest. God had placed limits on these bodies to usher us into humble dependence on Him. Don’t allow guilt or shame for choosing rest to settle in. Thank God for these limits & accept them.
- Acknowledge your thoughts & feelings but don’t give them the lordship over your heart and mind that solely belongs to Jesus. Cast your burdens on the Lord for He cares for you !
- Seek help. Therapy & Jesus go very well together. He designed us & has provided professionals with knowledge of how to help us steward our thoughts and minds better.
My meditation this week and going forward as I am walking through an extended valley is this :
The secret things belong to the Lord our God (Deut 29:29)
My therapist said “Anna, can you repeat this daily?” Just a little more joy breaks through with each proclamation. So in a season where everyone is prompted to reflect on what they’re grateful for, but where I know many are struggling here. May we find just one thing something small that we may be able to say:
I am grateful for the small sips, the tiny morsels, and the slow drip of the constant grace and mercy of God to meet me in the valley with His truth.
Take small sips & hold on.
Passages to read/meditate on/memorize:
- John 15
- Psalm 56:3-4
- Hebrews 13:5
- Romans 8
- Deuteronomy 29:29