Here is the scene: Days into labor, and I mean about five days. Finally, my midwife and I decided it was time for her to come, ready or not (I was only 10 days overdue), so after a few doses of a terrible tasting drink (herbs to get labor going) around 9:30 that morning, I was in heavy labor. Hannah is my fifth child, so I knew what to expect. But this just went on and on and on... I would set a goal. I can make it until 5:00 pm. I can make it until 9:30 pm. I can make it until midnight... At some point, I quit trying to see the end and just tried to make it!
It was about 2:00 am and I walked out of the bathroom into a HOT bedroom. Our bedroom door opened to the sunroom where the wood stove is and that was now stoked high and very hot. I remember so well saying, "You guys have got it entirely too hot in here!" My midwife answered, "I want it warm in here when the baby comes."
"BABY? Who is having a baby? Where is the baby? OH, that is what is going on here? This labor is going to end soon and there will be a BABY?" I will never forget those thoughts!
In my hours and hours of labor, I had forgotten the goal. I was so consumed with labor that I had lost the vision of the baby. As REO Speedwagon sings so well, "I've forgotten what I started fighting for..." There I was with a belly so big, I couldn't see my toes, and I was so distracted by my pain that I let go of the joy to come.
I remember when I went through a season of healing in my heart a few years ago that I thought the pain would never end. But I trudged everyday, sometimes taking a step back, but always moving, not stopping, trusting that Jesus was a Shepherd that knew where He was going. And now that I have walked all that healing out, I can say that whatever form the pain comes in, it never compares to the joy on the other side. Don't get distracted by the pain, press into the vision that there is healing on the other side.
I feel like that about a lot of things in my life lately. I get so consumed with the day to day that I forget why I am doing all this in the first place. Days of breaking up fights, cleaning up spills, folding clothes, washing dishes all make it so easy to forget that the children that require my endless time and energy will one day be adults. All that is being poured into them today will come back out tomorrow on the world. But how easy it is to get caught up in the fifth load of laundry of the day or the seventh time I have asked someone to clean up that mess!
This is my prayer for all of us: that we would be able to see beyond ourselves. That the Holy Spirit would give us vision so that we could run with endurance toward our goals. I pray that whatever situation you are in, your vision is as clear as your sight.