A Reason, Not an Excuse
by Cindee Snider Re
I awoke to a dismal, rainy, gray morning. I usually don’t mind the weather, enjoying the variety of our mid-western climate, but this morning it absolutely annoyed me. I felt frustrated as soon as I stepped out of bed. I knew I was tired. It had been a long five weeks of sickness in our house. My oldest daughter had been hospitalized briefly because she lost the feeling in and partial function of her left leg, which thankfully reversed itself after a week. That left four days until my husband’s shoulder surgery, four relatively quiet days for me to finally come down with the virus plaguing my family.
I knew God had kept me healthy through the days I was most needed, so I trusted Him to handle the details of the next four days as well. By Tuesday morning, I wasn’t well, but improved enough to take my husband to the hospital. His surgery went well, and by week’s end we’d all settled into a bit more normal routine. Saturday I awoke frustrated by life, and grumbling aloud to God, “Why does everything have to be so hard sometimes.”
Throughout the morning, the apostle Paul’s words rang in my ears, “So I find this law at work: When I want to do good, evil is right there with me. For in my inner being I delight in God’s law; but I see another law at work in the members of my body, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within my members. What a wretched man I am!” (Romans 7:21-24) I felt as wretched as Paul. I didn’t want to be short-tempered, frustrated, and annoyed, and I didn’t want my words to hurt the ones I love, but they did.
Too often I fail to be the wife and mother my family desires and deserves. They try to be patient and understanding. They know the pain and frequent nausea, resulting from an accident four years ago, often causes my quietness, impatience and frustration, and they’re right, but that’s a reason, not an excuse.
God doesn’t excuse my attitudes because of what He’s allowed in my life. He’s allowed my injury for a reason, and He’ll use it if I’ll let Him, but there’s the rub. God knows I can’t struggle through this on my own, and He doesn’t expect me to. Instead, He asks me to take every thought captive to Christ, to lean on Him, because His grace is sufficient for me, His power made perfect in my weakness. (2 Corinthians 12:9) God wants me to do life with Him, through Him, in Him, for then He can redeem the pain, limitations, and even my attitudes for the glory of His Kingdom.
Father, teach me to willingly surrender to Your will. Grant me courage to take up my cross daily and follow You, for then my life will honor and glorify You, and whatever You allow will be well worth the cost. May I learn to walk worthy. Amen.
Cindee Snider Re lives in Sussex, Wisconsin with her husband, their five children and two cats. She enjoys quiet evenings, long walks, homeschooling her children, good books, lots of tea, and travelling on the Harley with her husband.
Cindee Re, July, 2010