He explained it like this: You can have one neighborhood child come over to play with your child, and you won't even notice they are there. You can have two or three more children come over to play, and you will know they are at your house but they don't really bother you. But, when you have four or five children over to play, you will know they are there and they will drive you crazy.
It's called the "cumulative effect."
I've thought about his explanation and decided that it doesn't only apply to allergens, or neighborhood children, but also to my trials.
I'm not talking about the big ones.
I've lived through those and I know people, loved ones, that are trying to find their way through them now.
I'm talking about the trials that are considered little, only when compared to the life shattering trials like we experienced seven years ago.
These little trials won't go away. They have the ability to wear you down.
Weather specialists will tell you that weaker sustained winds during a hurricane do more damage than the stronger gusts. The relentless pounding loosens nails and roofing materials. The sustained winds weaken trees, causing them to fall. Trees that had previously withstood much stronger gusts.
These sustained, relentless trials have certainly weakened me.
I am certainly aware of the potential for a fall.
Many of these trials come from trying to find experiences and opportunities to help Ethan reach his full potential physically, and to keep him challenged mentally.
The other trials are personal. The One who knows them all is the only One who can do something about them.
To keep them from controlling my life, I must draw boundaries for them and keep them there.
Yesterday morning as thoughts of kids and trials and quieting and boundaries were running through my head, I asked God what to do.
I remembered all the years I taught four-year olds and the times I needed to settle them down, and keep them within boundaries that were safe and that would encourage appropriate and respectful behavior.
As their teacher, I had a secret weapon. When nothing would settle 14 or 15 four- year olds after a field trip, a holiday party, or an unusually good time on the playground, I used it.
My secret weapon was to sing.
I would choose a favorite CD, usually something by Raffi, and before long everyone was listening, doing what I ask them to do. I was back in control.
So yesterday morning I put on my shoes, grabbed my I-pod, and I took the little
The trials didn't go away.
I wish they had.
But they were in their place, and I was reminded Who is really in control.
It's not them, and it's definitely not me.
"God made sky and soil, sea and all the fish in it.
He always does what He says-
He defends the wronged,
He feeds the hungry.
God frees prisoners-
He gives sight to the blind,
He lifts up the fallen.
God loves good people, protects strangers, takes the side of orphans and widows,
but makes short work of the wicked.
God is in charge - always.
Zion's God is God for good!
If you need some songs to sing to your trials, I have lots to suggest. One of my favorites, that I sang to the
kids trials on my walk yesterday, is "HOLY CAPTIVATED" by Nicole Mullens.
Enjoy and be blessed.
*Psalm 146:6-10 from The Message