- Jennifer Z. Major
Swords are heavy, and if you drop yours, you'll slice off your foot.
But sometimes, as strong as you are, as patient as you are and as unflinching as you might seem, you get tempted to swing yours and do some damage, inflict some pain, and just for a minute, bring on the same world of hurt that you feel all around you.
(Because it hurt, losing my safety net hurt.
Trust me, it was better to stay quiet over the summer than to snipe like a child. Also, it's hard to be sociable when you're sad.)
Anyway, as much as you daily pick up your fight, and you make sure your armour is in good condition, and as perky as your pep talks to just keep fighting are, and as hard as you pray, and you do your level best to stay on the path that you know you were meant to stay on, no matter how people tried to persuade you to try something else??
Well, right now, everything is hard, and it hurts. That whole "keep pressing on" thing is exhausting and at the end of the day all you have to show for it is fatigue and the shriveling of your once iron will. Your heart is pondering how much longer this will take, how much more you have to give, how much deeper you'll have to dig, when you thought you'd already reached the magma and the heat is making you want to climb back up into the cool air and just toss it all and find a corner and cry your pitiful self into the bottom of a bag of chocolate chips...
Then you do something as innocuous as check your social media and there's your lovely friend Jeanne T posting about an egret being an answer to prayer and you cry like a baby because even if God has taken away your comfort zone, which had become an idol in and of itself, He has not taken away His promise.
So you rise, and check the blade of your weapon, and you lift that sword and you remember that promise that your friend Ronie taught you, from Exodus 14:14...and you raise your sword to heaven and wipe away the tears, "I will stand aside and let you fight for me."
So, you shake off the self-pity and the sadness over what is gone, you put one foot in front of the other and you follow, because you've gotten this far, and things don't really hurt as bad as they did before, do they?
So, you keep going. You send out queries to agents and you do what good hockey players do and leave it all on the ice. Because backward isn't an option, sideways is a pit, and forward is where the prize is.
But you remind yourself, the prize is not the sparkly thing with your name on it, because you HAVE TO BE CONTENT TO NEVER HAVE THAT, the prize is the journey.
As Siva says, "the walk is part of the gift."
But in this situation, Who you walk with and who you become, ahhh, that is the gift.