Perspective really changes things, doesn’t it? Our house in Maryland was old. It was built in the ’40s and had a ton of “character” and “charm”, which if you know anything about real estate you know that means old and weird/dumpy. We loved our house! It really was charming to us. There were so many imperfections in that house, that you couldn’t really just notice one thing. We had plaster walls, so our walls weren’t even straight, much less smooth. Sometimes a nail hole dressed the wall up and distracted from the years of peeling paint and the fact that it bowed in the middle. I never even thought twice about our walls in Maryland. We had much bigger problems. Like totally renovating the kitchen before we moved in. Or getting electrical stuff safe and up to code. Or cleaning… A LOT.
We live in a new house in Tennessee. Well, it’s not brand new — it’s 8 years old, but to us that’s pretty spankin’ new. And I have been getting worked up over these places in the walls where nails are showing. It’s just a few spots where the paint over the nail has chipped off. It’s where the dry wall is nailed in. Dry wall. Our walls are smooth as butter. Yet for some reason, this imperfection has been driving me crazy. I found myself thinking it was ridiculous and we needed to fix it.
Then I remembered where we used to live. I remembered how our walls looked before. I remembered the details of how the living room wall would look at night in the light of the lamp because we had no overhead lighting. The way you could see the strokes of paint and plaster, the texture showing through. And I stopped. How could I really be getting worked up about some nails showing? A year and a half ago, I would have smacked myself upside the head for such ridiculousness. But it’s all about our perspective. Where we are and what our daily view is. Now that I’m used to looking at these perfectly straight, smooth walls, I notice the slightest imperfection. Before, all there was was imperfection, and that was what I was used to looking at.
Six weeks ago I was talking about how huge I was when I was pregnant with Jack. Whenever I tell people that, they never believe me. Yes, I am a little person, but y’all know pregnancy can do some things to the body. My husband, who is never one to talk about weight and things of that sort, will be the first to admit that I was gigantic in those days. I’m sure every woman feels huge, but I literally felt like a beached whale at the end. And in my mind, since then, I’ve always talked about it in a negative tone. Thinking about how big I was and how hard it was to get around, etc. etc.
Now my perspective has changed. I would love to be big. I truly hope I get to be pregnant with Gabriel long enough to get big. I wish I had a pregnancy where my biggest concern was how big I was. I wish I was growing a big baby who made me look huge. Instead, I look small because I have a small, sick baby. And I have no promises that he’ll keep growing. No guarantees that I’ll be pregnant to term. I hear pregnant women talking about how big they look and how they look full-term even though their not. And it breaks my heart. It hurts to hear those things now, knowing that I may not have them. Knowing that these women don’t know the weight of what they’re saying.
My perspective has been rocked in so many ways. My life has changed. It is changing. And while I’ve never been one big on change, I’m realizing that my natural tendency is getting in the way. My natural tendency says to just buckle down and get through this. Not to let it change who I am. But how could I not? How could my core be rocked and my heart broken and I not be completely changed? And the beauty of it is that God is in the business of healing hearts and changing us. He wants me to be completely changed by this. He wants to use it to make me more like Him. And I’m so thankful for that. My flesh fights against it, but my heart is hopeful knowing God will change me.
And we know that for those who love God all things work together
for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.