Thursday, August 29, 2013

Fort Bliss

"Man the fort!"
Nahum 2:1

When my sweet girl was younger, we had a conversation one day, when she was having a bad day.  I went into her room where she was sniffling and grumpy, and asked her what was wrong.  And she said she didn't know.  She didn't understand.  She just felt cranky and impatient and mad at everyone. 

And haven't we all been there?

We talked about a few things that might be the cause:  not enough sleep, being hungry, and how some days are just bad days. 

And I told her she needed to find a way to help herself.  She should read something in her Bible, and pray, but that she could also play some music, or read a book she loves, or draw for awhile.  I said, "You need to find what will help you.  I can't do it for you."  And I gave her a kiss on the head, and walked out of her bedroom.

About ten minutes later, I came in to check on her, and you know what she had done?  Built a fort out of blankets and a chair or two, and brought every stuffed animal she owned in there with her.  And a little while after sitting in her "happy place," she was feeling better. 

I thought of this recently, when I read a great quote by Booker T. Washington ~ "Lay hold of something that will help you, and then use it to help somebody else."

I think it's important to know what helps us when we're discouraged, or faithless, or just plain grumpy.  Know what music, what Bible verse or Scriptural truth will bring our minds back to Him, and what's important. 

But that quote reminded me of our responsibility to others.  It reminded me of 2 Corinthians 1:3-4 ~ "Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort those who are in any trouble, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God."

Comfort others with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted.  I know the wording is a bit like a tongue twister, but it's such a beautiful passage.  It's both a reminder to be grateful for the ways He comforts us, and to see what we can do for others. 

My girl is one of the most compassionate people I know.  She not only thinks of others, she hurts when others hurt.  And she reaches out in ways she thinks would help.  She blesses me every day.

And I know, that if what I needed was a fort full of stuffed animals, she'd be the first to provide it. 

~ "that I may be encouraged together with you 
       by the mutual faith both of you and me" ~
Romans 1:12

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