I walked around carrying a weight on my back, baggage assembled in my passage through life - a care, a worry, a regret, a boatload of dread. I rolled it all up in a blanket of anger and stuffed it on top of the hatred and ire that supported the entire package.
It was all mine. It was personal. No one would get to me without going through all the junk.
Problem was, I couldn't get out for all the junk either, nor could I protect myself from the elements. After all, it wasn't a raincoat. Water seeped in around the edges, drenching my shirt, my pants, pooling in my shoes until sodden, soggy, I slopped through muck and mire, ankle deep in bottom of the river I was supposed to be swimming in.
And the inevitable happened, I tripped and fell flat on my face, nose buried in the soil, unable to breathe, to contemplate another step, another hour, another day.
"What was this all for?" I asked. "Why am I here? And what kind of God does these things? Why bother to try if I'll only rise up early to sit up late and suffer in the end?" (Ps 127:2)
I became afraid. Afraid to move. Because what if I did and in that moment I fell again? Worse, what if someone saw me? And what if while I'm down there they laugh? I couldn't bear it. Couldn't contemplate being a fool any longer, but the pull of the current was tugging the pack from my back.
No, these are my things. This is what's saved me all these days, months, years. This moment when he said that to me. That one when she should've done different. This animosity. That indignation. And I scrambled for it, clawing outward to snag even a shred of self-respect. Self-satisfaction. Self-regard. Selfishness.
But brought to my knees, held by the washing of water stronger than I, I could only lay there and watch it all ... float away. Away. Gone. All I'd gained taken in an instant. My heart heavy, I pulled myself up on my knees. (Eph 5:25-27)
And found in kneeling, I could stand. Minus the load on my back, I had new strength. I could stand taller, walk straighter, see further. I could reach out and touch him and her and them over there. Arms extended, legs striding forward, I took up the race across the sand, through the valley of death I'd been wandering in, and up onto a rock where I could see for miles. (Heb 12:1;Ps 23:4;Ps 91:14)
Miles. A marvelous view with promise before me, my failure beneath me, and a very strong hand laid firm on my back.
-------------------------------Suzanne D. Williams
Suzanne Williams Photography
Suzanne Williams is a native Floridian, wife, and mother, with a penchant for spelling anything, who happens to love photography.