Hard happens. Then what?

July 8, 2011 § 1 Comment

I've recently come face-to-face with a familiar foe by the name of Hard. 

Wreaking havoc on the lives of people very special to me, I started thinking about how to handle Hard and according to how God would have us handle it. Here’s what I’ve come up with so far.

What does Hard look like?  Well, that depends. We don’t usually see Hard coming.  Or when we do, we’re never “ready” for it. Hard can start with loss or change.  Hard is the result of a bad choice.  Hard is current or an unsettled monster from the past.   Hard is what we think we’re exempt from.  Hard is what happens to other people.  When Hard comes knocking on our door, it must have the wrong house.  We respond to Hard in one of two ways:  “Not me” or “Why me?”  We either run from Hard, believing Easy is around the corner and figuring there is someone else we must track down to blame for Hard’s appearance, or we stand staring at it, dumbfounded and unmoving, sulking and dwelling or indulging in other’s pity over having Hard at our house.

Then what?

Now, take what I’m about to say as I mean it, because I am not diminishing the enormity or all consuming-ness of Hard. 

But Hard can mean hope.

Hard can be beautiful.

Hard can heal.

Not right away.  Maybe not for a long time.  But we’ve all seen it- we grow during Hard, come out the other side a different person.  We see God in hard.  God uses Hard to show us we need Him, to rely on Him, to open our eyes wider to what exactly He would have us do.  Hard  brings us to our knees.  Let’s admit it- without Hard, we would get carried away, cruising through Easy as if we only had to answer to ourselves.  Hard turns us to a mighty God who delivers, redeems, and forgives.  We can rarely handle Hard on our own, and no matter how phenomenally awesome we find our friends and family, the only One who knows our heart and the deepest part of our Hard is God.   And without His grace, our Hard adds up and can be unbearable.  Even if we close our eyes, running as fast as we can to make Hard a memory, there’s more Hard ahead.  You know it.  I know it.

Bless you in your Hard, friends. 


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