Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Get Over It!

Get over it.  I despise that phrase.  Just typing it makes my red hair stand on end.  Though, to be honest, I don't think it's the phrase that bothers me as much as the attitude with which it is usually uttered.  I can't tell you how many times I've poured out my heart about an issue that was a heavy burden to me only to have some insensitive soul state, "Well, you need to just get over it."  Seriously?  That's the best advice or comfort they could offer?  No, what it says to me is "I don't have time to deal with your issue, and I don't really care enough to even pretend like I care."  Perhaps that is not what the person means, but it sure does come across that way to me.

However, as I listened to my pastor's sermon on Sunday night, I realized that there is actually some sound advice in that seemingly careless statement.  Isaiah 40:31 says, But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.  Notice that phrase, "mount up with wings as eagles."  The eagle soars high above the ground, over the valleys and mountains alike, just as God wants us to do.  He doesn't want us to be trapped beneath the weight of our burdens, but rather He wants us to soar above them.  From there, not only is our load lightened, but we also gain a different (and better) perspective on our situation.

Get over it.  Get above it.  Don't let the circumstances weigh us down to the point that we can't even look up.  Rise above them.

As my pastor pointed out, there is an odd placement of phrases in this verse.  It speaks first of flying, then running, and lastly walking when human logic would argue that one must walk before he can run and run before he can fly.  That's an interesting point, but even more intriguing to me is that the strength to mount up with wings as eagles only comes after we wait, but doesn't it take strength to wait on the Lord in the first place?  It feels like being caught up in a Catch 22.  You have to wait to have strength, but you need to have strength to wait.  So, how are we supposed to find the strength to rise above our problems if the strength isn't there to begin with?  Fortunately, the Bible covers that as well.

In Exodus 19, God is speaking to the children of Israel at Mount Sinai and reminding them of how He had brought them safely up out of their Egyptian bondage.  Notice what He says in verse 4: Ye have seen what I did unto the Egyptians, and how I bare you on eagles' wings, and brought you unto myself.  Did you see it?  God said, "I bore you on eagles' wings," not "you lifted yourself up on eagles' wings."  When Moses arrived on the scene to lead God's people out of Egypt, he found a nation who was tired, weary and discouraged.  They had no hope, no faith and no strength.  They couldn't free themselves, and they knew it.  As downhearted as they were with their complicated lives, they couldn't find the strength to rise above their circumstances.  They couldn't "get over it."  So God lifted them up and above their circumstances.  He bore them on eagles' wings when they didn't have the strength to mount up as eagles themselves.

And God will do the same for us if we'll allow Him.  Will the troubles vanish?  Not likely.  Will everything work out the way we want?  Probably not.  But God is in control, and He will ensure that everything works out as it should.  If we will surrender the situation to Him and trust Him to do what's best, we'll find ourselves rising above our circumstances.  And take it from a seasoned hiker, the view always looks better from the top!

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