Tuesday, August 7, 2007

lemonade drinker

when life throws you lemons, should you really make lemonade? maybe juggling the lemons would be more fun. or what if you threw them back? what would life do? would life make lemonade? it's clear to me that life has a very large lemon grove in it's backyard and probably has some sort of clue as to how to make lemonade, you would think so anyway.
lemons are sour, but when paired with the right amount of sugar, lemons are great and can be enjoyed by nearly anyone. lemon juice goes well with fish. a wedge of lemon is great in water or iced tea or even select beers. but the sheer thought that making lemonade from lemons as a cure for life's problems seems a little odd to me. if life were so simple, we would all be genetically addicted to massive quantities of lemonade.
some of life's problems are no fun. sweet, sour or otherwise. making lemonade might quench a temporary thirst, but when you get a real curveball in life, your thirst is probably not your first priority. in fact, if you have a real issue, you might reach for something a little stronger than good old lemonade.
when you are on the ropes, so to speak, you have many options on dealing with your problems. you could call your mom or your sister. your therapist or your priest. your best friend or your co-worker. the list goes on but we like to share our grief, it makes the pain easier to bear. you could write it down, sing a song or come out with another self help book (i'm sure we need more self help books). hey, you could tell the whole world.
the most difficult thing to do is carry the burden by yourself. walking around with a hundred pound weight on your back is no fun, but for the sake of martyrdom, some will do anything. it's as if by managing the pain alone you can somehow attach a special life badge to your chest to show off at parties. the truth here is that many do just that, for no other reason than to show how mentally strong they are. meanwhile they are a psychological and emotional mess that is one small problem away from snapping for good.
what if there was someplace you could go with this baggage other than the carousel at the airport. other than dropping it at the feet and heart of someone you know or are related to. have you ever considered that sharing your burdens with other people only adds to the burdens of that person? don't get me wrong, if someone i know is really suffering i want nothing more than to help if possible. but what if i am suffering too and my own emotional well being is spent on my own issues? how valuable am i to you when you need someone to talk to?
i am not suggesting that you have to precede all conversations with a probe. the fact is that we all have issues and demons and problems. some are bigger than others, but each person deals with these things differently. you and i may go through an event that looks exactly the same from the outside, but you may sink and i may swim. we are all wired uniquely.
the great thing about that is this; people who have been through certain fires and not only lived to tell about it but came through virtually unscathed, are the best candidates for coming along side someone else who is going through the same thing, and being the greatest help to that person.
however, while that sounds all warm and fuzzy it is not always the most realistic. we lead busy lives and there are days where we do not have enough time to deal with our own issues, let alone someone elses. so we carry the burden alone or we drop it at the feet of someone that may not be able to do anything with it.
if it's bad to carry this alone and possibly just as bad to throw this at someone else, what next? surely there must be ways of getting the issues of your day and life out into the open where they can be parsed and dealt with.
what you seek ultimately is clarity. answers are hard to come by and sometimes impossible. but clarity is what you have regardless of an outcome provided you fully understand the circumstances. and having clarity leads to having peace, something we all have a terrible way of taking for granted.

some will tell you that time heals all wounds, they are wrong. i will tell you that exposing your wounds to the one who has paid the greatest price and has scars to prove it is where the healing starts and ends.
in His arms we can feel safe, knowing that He can handle all of our concerns and problems, no matter how big or how small. you question that? give it a shot. there is no greater peace than when you have asked Jesus into your heart and allowed Him to bring clarity to your life. your problems are nothing, He carries the weight of the world on His back for real and has room for more. All He asks is that you believe, and in doing so that you share the good news with everyone you know.
so while lemonade is enjoying to drink, it will not bring you clarity, i don't care what you put in it. clarity can be had by laying your burdens down at the feet of the one person who can actually handle anything you throw at Him. trust me on that one, i have thrown Him some real doozies over the years and He is still standing there asking for more.
Peace to you.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I like lemonade... but real lemonade is never clear, that would be water! I agree that true clarity is only achieved through "Living Water".