Nothing is wasted

We were on vacation and rushing out the door to go white-water rafting when our 10 year old couldn’t put his shoe on. Like the ‘good’ mom I am, I told him to hurry up or we were going to be late. He finally picked up his shoe and jumped in. He continued to struggle so I turned to deal my whiney child and got stopped me in my tracks. His foot was nearly twice its normal size. A wasp bite on the ankle the evening before had turned into much swelling. I don’t like to see him go through such pain like bee/wasp stings. However, since I hadn’t experienced anything but just a bee sting I didn’t really understand what he went through… until yesterday.

I was sitting at the admission gate taking up money for the soccer team when I saw a bee buzzing around. Sometime later, my hand came down on my chair and intersected with what I came to learn was a yellow-jacket. A friend got me ice, the swelling began, and then shortly after, I went home. O MY GOODNESS! Yellow-jacket stings are painful! Maybe it is normal or maybe it was a mild reaction but at one point I laid on the couch in tears b/c it felt like a knife being thrust into my hand. Aaron helped me with more ice and pain meds then told me he usually hurts that way for a while then by morn just has swelling and soreness. After the pain meds kicked in, I finally went off to sleep. Just as Aaron said, this more I am sore but not as swollen as I expected.

In the mist of the pain, I told Aaron I had a new appreciation of what he has gone through b/c of wasp stings. As the pain meds begin relaxing me, God brought to mind a passage –

“Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God.” 2 Corinthians 1: 3-4


God reminded me nothing we go through is wasted. As a loving Father, God hurt with me last night just as I hurt when I see my children endure pain. Yet my experience created in me a greater empathy of others who suffer in similar situations. I can make a long list of trials I do not want to endure… cancer, car wrecks, losing a child, etc. Yet people who have walked through such pain are able to reach out to others in similar situations in ways people who have not walked it cannot.

Even now God is taking me through a valley I would have been happier avoiding… yet I’m learning so much about walking in faith. I know that when I come out on the other side, I will be able to minister to people in similar struggles like I wouldn’t have been able to otherwise.

Lord, I would rather have skipped the yellow jacket sting. Yet I know you were there and using the everyday to remind me of an important lesson and building in me a new sympathy for others. Thank you for not wasting our challenging but instead making good things come from them. Help me to walk on in faith especially during the struggles! Amen!

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