Hug Your Hardship

I read the following devotion yesterday and thought it was so good. It isn’t easy, but so many times we need to “hug our hardship” or like the devotion is titled “kiss the wave.” Whatever the obstacle is in your life, instead of fighting against it, go ahead and embrace it and allow it to teach you and change you for the better.

Habit 2: “Kiss the Wave”

The great preacher Charles Spur­geon, who suffered from depression and anxiety, said, “I have learned to kiss the wave that throws me against the Rock of Ages.” That is easier said than done, no doubt. But that is how spiritual growth happens. 

A few years ago, my wife, Lora, was diagnosed with cancer. Not long after, she came across a question in a piece of poetry: what have you come to teach me? It’s a difficult question to ask, but the answer might revolutionize your life! 

There is a God who can rebuke the wind and the waves with these words: “Peace, be still.” But before you rebuke the storm, you need to accept it. You can’t move past the pain if you ignore it or hide it or deny it. You have to confront the brutal facts with unwavering faith. 

Our ability to remember the past is a gift from God, but it comes with a caveat. We don’t always remember accurately. This fact reminds us that memory is both selective and subjective. As such, it can be a blessing and a curse. When we remember yesterday the wrong way, we live a lie. And living a lie undermines our ability to win the day. 

Sometimes we misremember—or try to forget—because the past can be incredibly painful. That’s where the second habit—kiss the wave—comes into play. You’ve got to own the past, or the past will own you. 

How? You have to accurately inventory your past, hiding from nothing. Then you have to own all of it—the good, the bad, and the ugly. It is what it is. Or maybe I should say, it is what it was. You may not be re­sponsible for what happened, but you are response-able. 

Two people can encounter the same obstacle—a difficult diagno­sis, a bitter divorce, or even the death of a loved one—yet come out on the other side, very different people. One person owns his or her pain, while the other person is owned by it. One person becomes better, while the other person becomes bitter. 

The difference? You’ve got to kiss the wave that throws you against the Rock of Ages. You’ve got to come to terms with the pain that has made you who you are.

It’s time to kiss the wave!

Think on this: The obstacle is not the enemy; the obstacle is the way.

~Mark Batterson,Win the Day, An 8-Day Reading Plan 

James 1:2-4

2 Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds,  3 because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance.  4 Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.

Your friend,


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