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Pressed Not Crushed
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Photo: Studiomill
“Stop that!” I told my son, sharply reprimanding him for stomping on and crushing a flower during our afternoon walk. He looked up at me as if I had two heads on my shoulders.

“Why?” He quickly responded. He wasn’t disrespectful or obstinate in his tone, so I stopped and asked him to lift his foot off the flower he was so obviously treating with such disrespect and disdain . . . as soon as he did, his question became clearly apparent. He had stepped on a dandelion. He continued looking up at me and matter-of-factly stated “it’s a weed Daddy. It needed to be stepped on . . . it doesn’t matter how many times you step on it or what you do to try to get rid of it . . . Mama says they just keep coming back!”

His comments made me laugh out loud. As we resumed our walk the reality of the life lesson I’d just witnessed hit me with ever-increasing clarity and weight. That week had been a difficult one for me. I had found out that a close friend’s relative had died of cancer and there were some unfortunate and scary changes happening at work. I had felt stomped on.

I’m sure you’ve felt that way as well; and maybe you feel that way more often than every once in a while. Unfortunately, in this world, this is the reality of the human condition.

Stark Words

The Apostle Paul, writing to the Christians in Corinth about their present difficulties, reminded them of this reality in some very stark words: “We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed” (2 Corinthians 4:8-9).

Research shows that when we deal with depression and anxiety, it’s easy to quickly lose perspective and hope. Ultimately despair sets in. When that happens, there are some who will turn to unhealthy coping skills such as drugs, alcohol, food, sex, pornography, unhealthy relationships . . . and maybe even suicide.

Paul ends this chapter with these hopeful words—words that were written for you and me for such a time as this: “For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal” (2 Corinthians 4:17-18).

So when you feel stepped on, stomped on, pressed down and perplexed by life, never forget that no matter how many times it happens, Jesus has your name written on the palms of His hands. He made you and knows you intimately; knows how many hairs are on your head and has promised to return for you. (Isaiah 49:16, Psalm 139:16, Matthew 10:30, John 14:2-3).

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By Omar Miranda. Copyright © 2014 by GraceNotes. All rights reserved. Use of this material is subject to usage guidelines. Scripture taken from the NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION ®.


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