Last week Aaron spoiled me and took me to Cozumel, Mexico. It was .... amazing. Dare I say ... epic. Throughout the trip, Aaron kept commenting on how he noticed that we both kept taking deep breathes. It's almost as if we've forgotten to breathe for the last 18 months or so, and then all of a sudden we came up for a breath of fresh air and found more than we bargained for.
There was no time in Mexico. There were no decisions to be made (unless you count whether to swim in the ocean or swim in the pool a decision). There was no whining, no complaining, no tears, no fighting, no struggle ... no hard. (Unless you count me on the last day there when I was throwing a temper tantrum about having to leave.) It was .... heavenly.
Aaron and I had time to reflect, re-connect, relax, read, be bored (when is the last time you were truly bored?? It is great fun, actually.), laugh, eat, drink, dance, and well - breathe. It was ... heavenly.
On my last day there, I was not happy about having to leave. "Just one more day?", I kept asking. Aaron, being the mature man that he is - kept telling me to just be thankful that we had this chance to hit the reset button before the busy fall/winter months. Hmph. I don't want to. There is no beach in the fall/winter. Actually, the truth is - I was realizing that I was scared to death to go back to "hard".
Don't get me wrong - we don't have a HARD HARD life. Just a hard life. You know, the normal hard that is accompanied by a gaggle of kids, normal marriage stuff, normal family stuff, normal financial stuff, normal moving stuff, normal health stuff, normal ministry stuff, and normal adoption struggles. All normal, but all hard at times....sometimes more than others.
As I sat in my private pool (yes, we had a private pool!!!) overlooking the ocean, I began to search my heart and ask God to reveal what was really going on. He quickly showed me that I have chosen to make "hard" my home. The daily routine of life, the daily struggles, the NOW...I've forgotten that the hard of NOW is not my home. Heaven is my home. One day there will be no more hard. There will be no more time. No more decisions to be made. No more whining, no more complaining, no more tears, no more fighting, no more struggle .... no more hard. I have much more than Mexico to look forward to.
Upon this realization (or more like a reminder), I began to ask God to help me live out the days ahead of me remembering such truths. I've grown weary of being weary. I've grown tired of taking myself so seriously. It's time to start laughing again. Time to find joy in the hard rather than drowning in it. So I asked for this. I asked for a renewed heart and a renewed mind to go home to a life that will still look the same on the outside, but with the ability to see HEAVEN in my days. Or at least the hope of it. I asked for the ability to live out the hard with such an eternal perspective in mind that the hard didn't seem so ... hard. I couldn't believe I had forgotten such simple truths - but alas, I'm human.
So if you are struggling....be it actual HARD HARD, or just daily hard - ask God to give you a glimpse of Heaven today. Ask him to remind you in a way unique to you that this too shall pass. Get away if you need to. Turn everything off (including the kids). Remember why you love your spouse. Remember why you love your God. Remember why you love your kids. Remember why you do what you do. Remember that HARD is not your home. Heaven is.
And if all else fails - go to Mexico.
|It was fun getting dressed up.|
|Breakfast view each morning. Not too shabby.|
|Our "glass bottom boat" that we took out for our snorkeling excursion. We got to hold star fish, saw a few giant turtles, and floated in 30 feet deep water that was crystal clear all the way to the bottom. God's creation is stunning.|
|View from the balcony of our room.|
|Our private pool.|
|We had a romantic dinner on the beach to celebrate 14 years of marriage. We arrived to this set up for us.|
|Table for TWO|
|Our sunset dinner|
|Amazing Spanish wine on the beach. Yes, please.|