“But you must continue in the things which you have learned and been assured of, knowing from whom you have learned them.” 2 Timothy 3:14

What Have You Learned?

Part 1

This month marks the 10thanniversary since I acquired a chronic health condition that drastically changed my life. I was unable to work for several years; my family had to change/get rid of a wide variety of things: vehicles, pets, and fragrances to name but a few.

I took the day off from work and asked the Lord where He wanted me to go—to reflect, mourn (this and multiple other things that had happened during that time) and then move on. His reply was “Whiskeytown Lake.” My first response was, “Really?” but then I realized what better place to mourn and, with God’s help, move on. I hadn’t been out there yet since the Carr Fire, and I started crying long before I actually got to the lake.

The first burnt house was enough. The lake, once so busy you could hardly find a parking place, was almost empty, only a few boats here and there, a few cars parked along the highway. As I sat under a blooming manzanita bush and looked out over the lake, I could see how clear and blue the water was (I had been told by several people it was still murky from all the silt). I could see trees along the shoreline that were still green, but the mountains behind them were filled with charred sticks of what was once an incredibly beautiful forest. More tears.

As I pondered exactly what I was doing there, God asked me, “What have you learned?” I was able to immediately respond, “I’ve learned You are the same yesterday, today and forever (Hebrews 13:8).

I’ve learned, “You don’t love me any less 10 years into a chronic illness than You did before.”

I’ve learned to appreciate the little things more.

I’ve learned it’s okay to be broken.

I’ve learned, “You take care of things in Your timing and in Your way, not mine. I’ve learned that’s best.”

I’m reading through Exodus. Chapters 7-11 are about the plagues the Lord sends on Egypt before the Israelites are led out of 400+ years of slavery. Six times in those five chapters God says in some form, ”You shall know, recognize and acknowledge, that I am the LORD.”

That’s probably the biggest thing I’ve learned. Circumstances don’t matter; things happen and will continue to happen until we’re home in heaven. But I know, recognize and acknowledge that He is LORD above it all.

Tomorrow we will continue looking at what I’ve learned. I pray you’re already thinking about the things you have learned, the things the Lord has shown you…please share them if you feel led.

“Father God, thank You for the questions You ask, often in hard places, helping us realize what we have learned there, and helping us move on. Amen.”