I’m sitting on top of my favorite hill. One at the back of our property. One that gives a great view of everything. Breathing hard. A lingering cough from our bout with the flu tearing up my chest with each breath.
It’s no wonder I’m up there, all ready for a perspective change. You can certainly get one just being up there. Of course, the change of perspective I was searching for had nothing to do with landscapes. Unless you count the landscape of my mind and the huge earthquake of bitterness splitting it down the middle and devouring all peace.
Days on the farm can be stressful. It’s not all just picturesque. And when you live in a small house with eight people, things tend to go wacky sometimes.
This time around wasn’t so bad. Not nearly as bad as I first made it out to be. Not as bad as I had taken it. Basically I was having a moment of self-pity.
I kept it inside. Did my work. Ran around in circles trying to save my baby sister and everyone else from the destruction she was causing on those fast-moving little legs.
But I had to get out and get it out before it got the better of me. After finishing up the dishes, I grabbed my jacket, flung myself out the door and off the porch, and ran all the way to the hill I just told you about.
For me, sitting on an old pile of wood on a really big hill while the cold wind blows my hair and cools my “fire” is one of the best ways to “let it go.” As a Christian, some would automatically think that in times of trouble I could just call to God and He would make it better. But that isn’t always how it goes.
Am I saying I don’t think God hears me? No. He always hears me and everyone else. Am I saying that He doesn’t care or that He can’t always help me? No. God cares. Always. That’s why He sent His Son as a sacrifice for us — He cares. Of course He can help me. He made me, for gosh sakes. He made the wind in my hair and the pond down the hill and dirt forming this hill and the world this hill is bumped out from.
Of course He can help. All I’m saying is that sometimes, even though He’s always there, I, as a mess of a human being, don’t always feel Him. I know He’s right there. Right next to me. But by running out here to sit against the elements, I’m merely asking Him to scoot closer so I can feel that hand on my shoulder. Or maybe it’s vice versa. He’s drawing me out on a hill so I can see better and hear His voice in the wind. He wants me to scoot closer.
So as I sat there griping about everything from my family two hills away to the finches watching nearby and the mud on my boots, I comforted myself with the thought, “Just a few more years.” And just when I was asking myself, “Why is life so unfair?” from out of the blue a huge gust of wind flies up from the valley behind me and slams me. I creak forward and grab a board to steady myself. It whistles past, stirs the sleeping trees, scares a few birds and kicks up the leaves…and then disappears. Quietness reigns again. The birds return. It was like God had said, “Why indeed?”
I suddenly got chills up my spine as it hit me. Jesus died for me–wasn’t that unfair? Kids all over the world are suffering from hunger and abuse and godlessness–isn’t that unfair? Yep, Maddie, your life is so unfair. It just blew me away.
Guilt took over. Apologies followed. And I left the hilltop feeling somehow as though I’d relearned a lesson. A lesson God continues to patiently show and reshow to me. I was so busy thinking about how unfair my life is–this life full of comfort and safety and friends and family and everything I could need–that I didn’t see just how unfair it really is.
I don’t deserve all of this good in life. I don’t deserve this life at all. But Someone gave me both.
All I can say is: You’re right, God. Life is so unfair. Thank you.
Written by PI Girl Maddie, who recently started a blog where you can find this post and others.
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