"Difficulty is actually the atmosphere surrounding a miracle, or a miracle in its initial stage. Yet if it is to be a great miracle, the surrounding condition will be not simply a difficulty but an utter impossibility. And it is the clinging hand of His child that makes a desperate situation a delight to God." Streams in the Desert October 14th
I have been ruminating on these words for the past few days and finding them to be completely counterintuitive because when the situations in my life look like they are breaking down around me, my natural impulse is to freak out. When things look bad my spirit fills with dread. I feel myself losing control as I slide towards the edge of the cliff.
The words above remind me to see life's troubles as opportunities for transformation and renewal.
I think a large piece of this whole process has to do with being redirected. We make our way through life repeating our daily routines, when suddenly something unexpected happens that changes everything. This change in trajectory may happen with the loss of a job or in the death of a loved one. Perhaps it comes to us in the loss of a particular freedom and measure of independence. When I was ten years old my mother suddenly died in her sleep. It was completely unexpected and it changed my life forever. Two years later I would be living in a brand new house in a different neighborhood, riding in a brand new car sitting with three new siblings with a new mother sitting beside my Dad. It was a drastic redirection of my life that was both terrible and wonderful -- mysteriously woven together.
This whole notion of life difficulties setting the stage for miracles to happen is about us coming to the end of ourselves. When we find ourselves in situations were we are suddenly powerless, that is the place were God's power will manifest. These are the conditions for the supernatural to break through. This is where things get really interesting. Think of the story of David and Goliath. David, a boy with only a few stones and a sling coming into combat with an armored professional soldier who was also a giant. Seen from the perspective of common sense David's complete failure was eminent yet that's not what happened that day. Little David walked off with Goliath's sword and massive head. David stepped into the situation without fear, knowing God was with him. That's the way I choose to live my life... which is often pockmarked with trouble and impossibilities -that are also windows of opportunity, miracles waiting to happen.