I swear I had just been on a mountaintop. Matt had been travel-free for 4 weeks. I felt full and able to handle the busy travel season coming up. Then, in what seemed like an instant, I felt myself spinning in a downward spiral. Matt had been gone 6 of the last 7 days. And it didn’t look like it was going to slow down. I was having a full-on pity party for myself. I felt alone and isolated. I was grabbing at branches and rocks on my way down the mountain. Friends. A good book. A new project. Kids. Anything to fill this lonely feeling. The branches would hold for a short time before they broke and I was sent careening down again. The anxiety I had dealt with several times, threatened to break through again.
One day, feeling I was about to hit bottom, I forced myself to go for a run. It felt like there were weights on my legs and weights on my heart. But I turned on music that would reaffirm the promises of God and forced myself to move. With each pound on the pavement and each song, I could feel the truth breaking through, like the sun shining bright after a day filled with rain. God loves me, He is for me, He is my strength. But more importantly, He wants to be number one in my life. Too often I get busy with other things and slowly crowd Him out. When things are moving along smoothly, I being to think too much of myself and my ability to handle things. I become too confident in myself. The truth is, however, I can do nothing on my own. And God uses the moments when I reach the end of myself, to remind me of how much I need Him. I was reminded how important it is to check in with Him each day, to ground myself in what He says. Then I am less likely to believe the lies the devil is telling me.
I was grateful for the humbling I felt and even more grateful for a loving, gracious Father who didn’t shame me. He gently pointed me back to the truth I already knew but so often forget. This time, instead of a flimsy branch to grab onto, I saw a hand reaching down for me. And as I took hold, I knew I could rest assured it would hold firm.