I awoke this morning with a familiar feeling, one I didn't like. I was flat. Not happy, not depressed......just flat. I am in the beginning stages of that place in life known as, dare I say it? "the change." Sshhhh, I won't say it out loud. I didn't use bold face type or big letters. It is not a real uplifting topic for women, (or the men who live with them.) But it is a reality.
I had a choice in that moment. To settle for how I felt, or to fight for something better. That is what it really comes down to each and every day. A choice for life or death. Victory or defeat. So I got up, grabbed some coffee and sought life in the pages of the book that was lying on the floor by the bed. The one that gives life.......I flipped open to Corinthians and there I found this verse:
"For thanks be to God, who always leads us to triumph in Christ, and manifests through us the sweet aroma of the knowledge of Him in every place, for we are a fragrance of Christ to God among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing." 2 Corinthians 2:14,15
God has taught me that I don't have to settle. I don't have to slog through the day feeling like this.
I can have victory in Christ.
As I rustled through those pages, I started to feel more like life and less like death. And I realized something else. If I had settled for that feeling? I would have missed the beautiful fragrance that the people in my life are giving off, because they are making the choice to get up and give life to me. And I don't want to miss it.
I don't want to have to apologize because I have been so focused on myself that I don't see the hurt in your eyes for being ignored, not appreciated, not valued.
We all have heard about muscle memory. Trained athletes know it. The muscle remembers. But so does the mind.
That is what I remembered with tears this morning on the way to work. I remembered how I had to fight for life after my healing from anorexia. The healing of my mind had to come first, but then I had to begin the long battle of healing my body. You don't starve your monthly cycle away without having to work hard to get it back.
I remembered getting up in the dark before anyone else was awake, and running....just running. In the cold and in the dark all I heard was my feet slapping on pavement and my heart pounding, my breath coming out in puffs. I didn't want anyone to see me because I felt I was repulsive. I had ballooned to 125 pounds from 80, largely from fluid buildup that came from wreaking havoc with my hormones.
But morning after morning, I got up, I went out, I fought back.
And today, I can smile on that victory. Because God heard the prayers of hurting parents, and He heard me too, down there hitting the pavement. He was with me.
Later, after I felt a bit more confident my Dad went with me. It was good, just he and I running together. And someone else I didn't even know was watching too. I later learned that my future husband watched us run from the window of Flame liquors where he worked for years. After we met he told me this. Life is amazing isn't it?
I can rejoice now in the suffering, because of the victory at the end. Because much of life is getting back up over and over again, no matter how you feel and fighting back, because you know life is always worth it.
Restoration and light and life waits at the end of the road. And once we've come through? We can help each other find the way out.
When you have had part of your life ripped away is when you begin to know the true value of it.
All over the world today, people making the choice. Some even when it would be much easier to choose death.
Choose life with me today?