Over the past decade, we’ve had a similar set of circumstances. When either my son or younger daughter can’t keep down food because of a cold or stomach bug, we rush them to the emergency room. There, they start receiving fluids with the goal of rehydrating them immediately. When that is done and they are finally able to keep down food, we are discharged to go home.
If only it was as easy and brief as three sentences. But the truth is there’s anxiety about making the decision to go the ER. There’s weariness from filling out the paperwork and answering hundreds of questions in the ER. There’s heartache of watching my babies cry from being poked with needles. There’s sorrow of seeing them lethargic and unable to keep down food or drink. There’s exhaustion of being in a hospital room while waiting for them to feel better, which could be overnight or up to a week. There’s fear of the future. But my game face is always on and my focus is on seeing my kids well as soon as possible.
That is, until I arrive home. As soon as my sick one is situated, I rush into the shower. And there I stand under the hot water for I don’t know how long. Tears stream down my cheeks. I begin sobbing uncontrollably. The weight of the world, which was on my shoulders throughout the hospital stay, begins to overwhelm me. When I finally collect myself, I go directly to bed and sleep for hours.
Last Tuesday, I unexpectedly found myself in the emergency room with my younger daughter. When she was well enough the next day (evident in the pic above), we went home. As I stood in the shower, memories flooded of how I typically responded. And you know what? I didn’t cry or sob or feel overwhelmed. While I was sad that she caught a stomach bug, gratitude and praise were what flowed forth. You see, fear and anxiety did not have the same grip on me as they have had in the past. Therefore, my perspective of how I saw everything had changed as well.
I just looked at my baby and trusted that she was in God’s hands and in His care. In fact, it was evident through every person who worked with her during our stay. When I came home, I was grateful it was a quick visit. I was thankful that the last time either child were hospitalized was two years ago. I was grateful for God’s hand of protection over our children. I was thankful for every single person who prayed for us and supported us. We walked through the same set circumstances as we have for a decade, but my response was different because my perspective changed.
What is clouding your vision and preventing you from seeing what God wants you to see? Do offense and unforgiveness cause you to see people negatively? Does worry cause you to view situations with doom and gloom? Do guilt and shame cause you to see yourself as unworthy? Be willing to release those issues to God today and ask for help to move your eyes upward and fixed on our Heavenly Father. Psalm 121:1-2 says, “I lift up my eyes to the mountains—where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth.” Dear Friend, when you release such baggage, your response to the very same situations will reflect His joy and peace. This is what God’s desire is for us as His Son came that we “may have life and have it abundantly.” (John 10:10)