I’ve tossed around these words a lot today via social media.
I’ve looked them over in scripture, and found them to be a couple of my favorite phrases found in the bible. But not for the reasons you may think. I find them helpful, but I have to admit that I also generally laugh at them.
Let me explain.
See, I have a bland, Paul Rudd-like sense of humor. And these two phrases always seem to represent a moment when someone is being told something truly frightening or terrible, but in a way that kinda says, “Yeah, but you’re gonna have to man up about it and it’ll be cool in a bit.” Or, they tell the person to “take comfort” in some small consolation that pales in comparison to whatever badness is about to go down.
Now, while reading these passages, its usually the people being told this stuff that usually get me scratching my head, because (with the exception of Jonah) they never seem to say, “Um, no…I’m going to freak the heck out and do something else until you get this sorted out.”
And THAT confuses me more than anything.
I mean, if we’re being honest, we all want to do that, right? We see the humongous homework assignment in front of us and we’d much rather accept the failing grade. We think about cleaning our kitchen, and instantly remember the pizza coupon we got in the mail. When we think of things that seem difficult, we immediately try to think of how not to do whatever that thing is.
So the idea of being told to take comfort, when clearly all the alarms are ringing, feels like insanity.
But then I started to really focus on the words.
I’m a stickler for a good literal translation.
Nobody ever says, “Try and get comfortable”, or even, “Hope for comfort’. They flat out tell you to take it. And I agree with them there.
It is ridiculous to think that these things we’re going through, from the insane diagnoses to repeated failures, are going to make us comfortable. For most of us, even being “fine”, is a stretch. But I refuse to accept any station that leaves me feeling hopeless. And you shouldn’t either.
The holidays bring out the best and the worst in people. People are going to be bubbly in their emotions and want to wish all kinds of miracles into your womb. They’re also going to smile lovingly at you and your partner and ask sweetly what you’re waiting on.
YOU, yourself are going to wonder why you couldn’t have this ONE thing you wanted most from Santa and the Stork.
You may get to feeling down.
You may begin to get depressed.
You may begin to question any and everything, and it may make you lose sight of the goodness you do have in your life.
When you start to feel that way in these next couple of weeks, I want you to pause for a moment and do me (and yourself) one favor:
Don’t think about it. Don’t wonder about what to do next. Don’t worry about what people are going to think.
Find a way to make this year different. Take your comfort, and KEEP taking it.
And while you’re at it, Fear Not.
If you must be afraid, that is, Fear Not enjoying your life. You only get one.
Fear NOT being thankful for where you are RIGHT NOW. It’s a good place to be, regardless of how you feel.
Fear NOT finding your strength. You have more of it than you know.
Fear NOT believing. Hope is a terrible thing to lose.
I love you more than you can even imagine. Have a happy holiday, Eggshells. From my (two person) family to yours.
Townsend Family Portrait by LloveStudio.com Ornament Photo Credit