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Wednesday
Mar072018

Building boxes

One of the things I struggle with the most, (always have, likely always will) is being able to compartmentalize things. I have been told that men do this better, but one of my classmates (a man) says he struggles with it as well. When there are burdens, I find it hard to concentrate on anything else, and sometimes, I accomplish absolutely nothing because I can't stop thinking of those burdens. 

In the past year, I have been given progress in that struggle. I don't remember praying specifically, "Lord help me to compartmentalize things," but in this past number of months, I know he has granted it. Burdens are never gone. For those who think parenting ends when the kids move out, think again. Sorry; it only gets harder. Parents age. We age. Friends age. Friends get sick and die. This side of heaven, there is no end to burden and struggle. I can't let each and every burden flatten me. I have to be able to put them away in a box and focus on each day ahead. For me, at the moment, it means school. I have waited a long time for this, and I want to do well. If I let the things I cannot change drown me, I may not do well with this opportunity God has granted me. Right now, I am so thankful for seminary because it gives me incentive to compartmentalize. And I'm beginning to see the tremendous benefits. Those burdens are there, always, in the background, but if I want to do well on tomorrow's Greek quiz, I have to stop rolling them over and over in my head, and close the lid to that box. And I have to trust God.

This morning, my dear friend Persis wrote a beautiful post about a burden she's bearing. Her comments are worth thinking about:

When circumstances are overwhelming, walking by sight is next to impossible because the way seems so foggy, but that's where faith comes in. It's not faith in the strength of my faith or even how well I can recall God's promises. It is the hand that reaches out and clings desperately to the One who is really holding on to me and not letting me fall.

The only way we can shut up those boxes is what Persis talks about: reachig out to God. As we place our burdens before him, we ask him, knowing he can, to bear them. 

And then we close the box for a while and get on with things.

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