A couple of weeks ago I was blessed with an opportunity to visit Joplin, MO. I had not yet visited since the terrible disaster of the 2011 Tornado. I wasn't sure what to expect but I knew either way, it would be something that would change my life forever. Driving around, it amazed me at how well the town had cleaned up. It hit me then what people can do when they come together for a greater cause. We have so much power in our hands if we come together in love. What happened in Joplin was a huge tragedy and driving around, I realized how God IS capable of turning mess into clean, tragedy into testimony, disaster into beauty.
It amazes me how a community can pull together to clean up a mess. Makes me think about our lives in general. Why is it so hard for us to stand strong by one another when personal disasters are going on in personal lives? I don't have the answer to this but I do know that I have personally tried to make it a point to stand strong by my friends and family "going through things". As humans, we have a tendency to run when something is not benefiting us in our own lives. We tend to be done with others if they bring no "value" in our everyday life. I have been guilty of this.
Recently, I have been faced with many decisions and many questions on who should or should not be in my life. I tend to go through this often and I think it is a part of my growth. Unfortunately some people should not be first row in our lives and this may or may not be for a season. I have battled strong battles with a certain family member and where my heart did not want to let go, my God finally forced it at no choice of my own. This hurt me for the first couple of days but then I realized, even some family do not have a "right" or "claim" to be first row in our life. Some people are better off to be loved from a distance and I am ok with this....now. It took some prayer and time for God's peace to come into my heart with this I mean, it's family, right?
Relationships are so hard and the hardest part for me is discerning when it is time to let go or hold on to somebody. I currently have a friend who has been battling alcoholism. Destruction is often the word I think about when I concentrate on what this friend brings into my life but I have no desire to let her go. She needs love and caring and there might be a season in the future where God does ask me to let her go and at that point, I will have to obey. Then I have a friend who brings zero destruction into my life and could possibly bring some sort of value into my life if I allowed it BUT I realize that there is not a place for her in my life and this isn't a good or a bad thing. So, I had to release the friendship. It is just so odd how God works these things out and I still do not understand His ways but I know I will continue to follow because eventually I WILL understand His big plan.
Life's choices can bring disaster, just like the one that happened in Joplin but together we can get through. Pray for God to give you discernment on who should or should not be first row in your life. This decision could make a huge impact in your life. Allow the ones who truly love you and want to see you grow be first row and allow yourself to love the others from a distance. Allow your family and friends who want to see you strive come together to help rebuild you. Love and encouragement is what it's all about! Be blessed!