Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Get Up!

I watch in wonder as my 14-month-old rise once again from the concrete tennis court outside our home where she enjoys hoisting herself up by the wobbling tennis net, and then landing heavily after a few minutes.  Almost every time she stands, she looks about to see who has witnessed this great feat, and is rewarded with an applause and verbal affirmation that she is indeed spectacular.
"When do we lose our ability to keep getting up?" I asked my husband one day while we watched Mari as most watch their most enthralling favorite series on TV.  With such zeal, excitement, and pleasure, she gets up, and inevitably, falls down!

Why does she do it?  Why don't we?

I've come to the conclusion that Mari, like so many of us, is spurred on by those around her.  The 2 year old that buzzes by makes her squeal with pleasure, and the 10 year old sister zooming around her on her bike makes her dizzy with the possibilities of what tricks she may some day perform.  She is inspired by what she sees, and motivated by the triumphs of those around her.  She is aware of them, tunes into them, and allows them to drive her forward, despite her own ability to measure up.  Oh, and don't underestimate the unbridled enthusiasm and pride of her doting parents.  We see her, we know her, we rejoice in her every effort to become great, as I imagine we will do until the day we die.  No one can convince me that my little girl is anything but magnificent, and I let her know it.

Why don't we?  I think we stop looking to be inspired.  We forget to be in wonder of the victors around us, those with challenging stories and overcoming spirits.  We overlook the extraordinary faithfulness of ordinary people that we encounter every day, and therefore cheat ourselves out of hearing and being inspired by their walks of love for God and others.

So, how will I become more resilient?  I asked two friends I see regularly for how God has been touching them lately as a spark to my own heart and a way of spurring myself (and hopefully them in the sharing) to carry on.  I'm allowing myself to hear and feel deeply the sorrows and vitality of a friend with HIV, a widow who can't pay her child's school fees, a friend living in a two-room flat with his growing family, and a colleague who fears entering public transport after being thrown from a vehicle.  I also pray that I will look for opportunities to spur on my brothers and sisters in this rocky walk of faith.  Of being the loving Father's voice to them that sees their efforts and applauds their strength to rise again.

Pray that we can can be faithful to get up, and help others to do the same! 

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