Living at peace with our trauma is a journey. It’s a ride that’s especially created for ME. No one else has the privilege of experiencing it because it’s my life. And ultimately, it’s for the purpose of coming to know my God. As I stated in previous posts, it’s not about living pain-free. It’s about getting to know my sovereign God over it all.
Today I got an object lesson on what it is to resist the journey. By writing this I’m not trying to make our journey trite, because our journeys are holy. This is just a visual picture in a microcosm that the Lord gave to show me the macro vision.
Object Lesson Journey
I’m driving down to Atlanta this morning. The journey so far has included bumper-to-bumper traffic, extremely curvy mountain roads, and the added benefit of rain. As I began driving down the mountain, I realized that my lower back was sore. This made each mountain curve a little more aggravating than usual. Each bend in the road became a little stab in my lower back and hip. Since it was foggy and raining, people drove like snails and refused to pull over to let through traffic pass. My car was loaded down with supplies for the day, which shifted back-and-forth making an insidiously annoying noise. Needless to say, my tension level rose and I became aggravated. The longer I drove the angrier I became. My body began to tense up, which increased the levels of pain in my lower back. Now I was angry, in pain, frustrated, out of peace, and not enjoying the journey. There I was, resistant and making it worse. And the saddest part of this state is that I’m unable to see and experience my God behind the haze of anger.
Now again, I’m not trying to compare life’s traumatic events to a 2-hour, frustrating drive down to Atlanta, but what I am trying to highlight is my response to the situation. There were many unavoidable factors within my trip. My lower back pain, the weather, the traffic—all were unavoidable. Many parts of life traumas have elements of unavoidability. But what is within my power to control is my focus and response.
Earlier this morning, I could have relinquished my controls and released my resistance. Instead of tightening, I could’ve surrendered. I could’ve opened myself to God in the situation to see what He would do with the circumstance.
And fortunately, in this case, that is what I ended up doing. I began to look for Him rather than fighting. I relaxed into His sovereign care. And what you’re reading is the fruit. I’m dictating to Siri and learning.
Currently my back is still sore, I’m still stuck in traffic, and I’ve already passed several accidents because of the rain. So no, life is not painless. But the knowledge of God is what this journey is all about. I worked myself up into a lather, so I’m still a bit angry while driving through traffic. Maybe next time I will have the ability to surrender sooner. Maybe next time, from start to finish, I will have fellowship with my God.
The Purpose of Our Journey
Life is a journey to know Him. Our traumas can be stages set to witness our God. Life isn’t created to serve us; it’s presented to reveal Him. My life with all its pains and ecstasies is given to me as a gift. My journey to know Him has never guaranteed my ever-bearing happiness. If I envision it as given to serving me, I will be repeatedly disappointed. All offenses, abuses, and pains will seem to be an affront to my rights to happiness. I will resist the injustice and miss the purpose of it all: to know Him in and through every event of life. That is why I am here!
You will make known to me the path of life; In Your presence is fullness of joy; In Your right hand there are pleasures forever.
Psalm 16:11 NASB
John, you will never know what a timely Word this is for me. Life’s traumas are for the purpose of “knowing Him” and then being able to MAKE HIM KNOWN! Bless you, John!
“Life isn’t created to serve us; it’s presented to reveal HIm.”
This is a sentence to be memorized!
Ah!!! What a pleasure to read your Siri dictation for today. 🙂 Thank you for this little traffic testimony. These stories are the most practical to show how to “get along with God”.
Increasing love to you all.