A light at the end of the mud tunnel?

First, I want to say that it is a rainy Saturday morning.  My boys (the little rancher and the little cowboy) are actually getting along quite nicely and only once have I heard the word “idiot” while they’re playing WII Sports Resort.   I’m making little sausage and cheese omelettes in one of those sandwich-maker thingies and I’m almost done with my first cup of coffee…  Happy days.

My fanatic style hatred for mud can only be accentuated by the storm that is upon us now, right?  6 inches in 6 days or something like that?!  I stopped listening to the reports and delete my rain alert updates from my inbox before I read them now. 

But I was reminded the other day of how soon it will be when our days gradually start to lengthen again.  And even though the horses have a pit that is sticky, stinky, foot sucking muck all the way up their fetlocks, they still don’t have any mud fever or scratches or any such nightmare going on (knock on old, weathered barn wood) and their bodies seem to be keeping thrushies under control because there is no stinky mess coming from their beautiful bare feet. 

So, I think I can hang for the rest of the season.  I’m sure I will have to come back and read this post again and again to remind myself of the weird peace I have about it right now.  Especially if my trimmer comes and uncovers some nastiness or if one of the horses ends up with a cut/infection on their legs. 

God uses the weirdest circumstances to speak truth to our hearts… I hate the filth that mud brings.  Like sin, it seems to cling to the clean, vulnerable parts of our lives.  Allowing a breeding ground for other nasties.  Drying to hard clay that has to be removed with a metal curry and lots of sweat and hard work.  While most of the seasons of our lives are not filled with this kind of mud, there is a rainy season for each of us.  Sometimes it is a raining-and-pouring season where the mud seems so deep and thick we just can’t see how it is possible to survive.  Sometimes we are called to don our muck boots (or even hip-waders) and trudge through it.  For me, these seasons are marked by an intense battle between the mud and I- with moments where I feel as though I will actually get sucked under and my lifeless body will give up.

But the problem with that is that we’re never alone in the mud.  You see, some people have that foo-foo vision in their minds of the 2 sets of footprints in the lovely sandy beach.  And the classic story that goes with it…  My version is a little different.  My version involves the deep, water filled ruts left by my muck boots.  The stench of every other winter mess deep in my nose.  And a God that is bigger than the rain, bigger than the mud, bigger than the freezing storms, bigger than whatever havoc these things can create in my life.  He is a God that is there with me, when my arms begin to ache from digging the soaking manure out of the mud.  When I sweat even though I can see my breath because scooping and moving the thick mud is hard work. 

There is also Hope.  The wonderful, glorious Hope that the sun will shine again.  Even when today seems like the sun barely exists and may have abandoned us for good… the days will gradually get longer.  The weather will gradually get warmer.  And the mud WILL dry out.  He will be there shoveling crap along side of us until we get through this storm and then He will bring us spring and shine the warmth on our faces… where we will delight in the feeling it leaves on our cheeks and our closed eyes as we marvel that we really did make it through. 

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