Adversity!


Insane! Stupid! Crazy! (oops, that’s redundant, but you get the idea). I chose to hop on the old bicycle and run errands around town. And I made a dumb decision.

At this point, you may be thinking: What’d he do? Pull out in front of a semi? Is he writing this from a hospital bed? With one arm and two legs in traction? Using some pointy thing to tap out the message? Oh, that poor man!

Well, you’re probably not going there at all. I just like being overly dramatic. It’s a writer thing.

The dumb decision was getting on the bike in the first place. I mean we didn’t just have rain in the forecast. We had a steady rain drizzling down as I mounted up.

And Wisconsin seems to have its calendar stuck on winter (at least from my misplaced Texan perspective). We didn’t have snow but another drop or two in the temps and we would have.

I pedaled miles. Seriously! Miles…and…miles. Very dumb. And cold. And miserable. All because I made a poor decision.

When I made my final stop at the bank for some cash, I wanted to just stay in the lobby. I’d been wise enough to put on a heavier coat under a bright red windbreaker, but the rain soaked through everything. And the only way to get both warm and dry was to leave the lobby and go home.

The conditions outside hadn’t gotten any better during my five-minute break from the cold and the rain. Those adverse conditions spoke loud and clear. “Buster, you best get on home now.”

Talk about a heart hungry for home. In fact, every part of me yearned to ride like the wind (which was pretty strong and not blowing in a favorable direction). My soul longed, yea, fainted for the living room recliner.

But for a moment, with rain dripping down my back and a cold wind blowing in my face, I recognized the importance of adversity.

Adversity gets our attention.

Adversity makes us uncomfortable.

Uncomfortable enough to move.

Or change.

Or listen.

Which reminds me of something C. S. Lewis said.

“God whispers to us in our pleasures, speaks to us in our conscience, but shouts in our pains; it is his megaphone to rouse a deaf world.”

I became uncomfortable. Uncomfortable? That’s an understatement. I was miserable.

And…I wanted to go home.

The ONE often speaks to us through adversity.

Like disappointment.

Or disillusionment.

Or disaster.

Or disease.

Or dis-ease.

Then we respond.

Sometimes we rant.

Sometimes we rave.

And sometimes we listen to the ONE and we continue on the JOURNEY.

We desire all the more and go toward HOME.

Question: What are the questions raised by adversity in your life and how do you respond?

About tnealtarver

I've traveled and spoken around the world but always love to come home. There I eat exceptional meals, drink coffee to my heart's content, and get loved like nowhere else on earth. I believe a community centered in Christ should be all that and so much more.
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