You know when you are alone with your thoughts, and you start thinking of one thing and about 10 minutes later you realize like you couldn’t be thinking of something further from the original thing you thought about?
For example, you start thinking about haircuts, then you think about your last haircut, then you think about the magazine you read at the salon, then you think about the subscription you want to buy your brother for Christmas, then you think about your brother showing you an article in Sports Illustrated about people having to relieve themselves while running races*, then you think about the last time you had to go so bad you could barely hold it, then you think about Harry Potter, because that is the movie you were in when you had to go potty.
Somehow you just went from haircuts to Harry Potter in a matter of minutes on that thought train.
Well, my BFF from college and I like to call that our “Six Degrees of Concentration”.
Well, today my six degrees led me to somewhere I really needed to be and I know it was a God thing.
I was driving in the car thinking about being sugar-free this week. I’ve been drinking coffee with no sweetener for less than a week and I am already used to it. I thought about how it is the smell of coffee that I love and that if I had to hold my nose while drinking sans sweetener, I wouldn’t like it. Then I thought about how parents teach their kids to hold their nose while taking cough syrup. I thought about how nasty cough syrup tastes, but that it is only to help them feel better. And that thought immediately made me remember something I’d read about 7 years ago:
"Okay, then, imagine a bear in a trap and a hunter who, out of sympathy, wants to liberate him. He tries to win the bear's confidence, but he can't do it, so he has to shoot the bear full of drugs. The bear, however, thinks this is an attack and that the hunter is trying to kill him. He doesn't realize that this is being done out of compassion. Then, in order to get the bear out of the trap, the hunter has to push him further into the trap to release the tension on the spring. If the bear were semiconscious at that point, he would be even more convinced that the hunter was his enemy who was out to cause him suffering and pain. But the bear would be wrong. He reaches this incorrect conclusion because he’s not a human being.” (Strobel, 32)
The author is trying to say, that though we may suffer for a period of time through something, God is allowing us to go through this to get to where He wants us to be...somewhere better for us.
This was something I totally needed to remind myself of this week. My husband and I got some news that should have made us very happy for someone, but we both felt very sad for ourselves instead. I can’t go into detail, but it has to do with being childless. I was in a very “life is not fair” mood and thought more than once, “why are we made to suffer through this?” When I remembered this analogy this morning, I felt a bit more understanding toward our situation. I was quickly reminded of the verse:
“The sufferings of the present time are not worth comparing to the glory about to be revealed to us.”- Romans 8:18
Infertility and the adoption process require constant reminders that the best is yet to come, that there is a reason you are going through this, that God has a plan for you and it is glorious.
That is where my six degrees led me today- to God’s word and His promises.
*true story- look it up
-Strobel, Lee. The Case for Faith: a Journalist Investigates the Toughest Objections to Christianity. Grand Rapids, MI: ZondervanPublishingHouse, 2000. Print.