A dear friend has entered a new season of her life: caring for an ill and aging parent. She has become the juggler with too many balls in the air. She is loving on her mom while navigating hospital hallways and deciphering doctor-speak. All in crash-course style. She is a blessing to her mom, but she is exhausted.
In a recent email, she shared how she is ‘getting by’. Isn’t that our goal when life throws us a curve ball? We just want to ‘get by’. We know our energy reserves are depleted and we desperately need to just ‘get by’.
What is her strategy? She hunkered down. Yep, she got down and dirty God-style. She intentionally surrounded herself with sermons, praise songs, and kept the line of communication to God Almighty open 24/7. Bravo!
Hunker down: to hold resolutely or stubbornly when confronted by unfavorable circumstances. (It can also mean to squat on one’s heels but that sounds painful and uncomfortable for my arthritic knees.)
When, not if, our lives get hard and down-right tough, hunker down and dig in. Dig into some Ben and Jerry’s while digging into His Word. (True friends applaud this kind of behavior. You go, girlfriend!) Belt out those lyrics to your favorite praise songs; it is all beautiful music to God’s ears. Soak in some truths online from Andy Stanley or Bill Hybels. Circle the wagons. Bring in the reinforcements. Whatever it takes to hold resolutely in the midst of craziness.
In the Old Testament, we find out King Hezekiah hunkered down too. With the arrogant yet mighty Assyrians lobbing threats and bearing down on Jerusalem, King Hezekiah dug in. What was his battle plan? He went to the Temple and spread out before God the latest threatening letter. In my paraphrase, he said, “Here you go, God. This is all too big and scary for me. There is an army waiting to destroy us. This is all yours.” King Hezekiah didn’t panic and run; he prayed and stayed. He hunkered down before God and poured out his heart.
Lord, the God of Israel, enthroned between the cherubim, You alone are God over all the kingdoms of the earth. Give ear, Lord, and hear; open your eyes, Lord, and see; listen to the words Sennacherib has sent to ridicule the living God. 2 Kings 19: 15, 16 (NIV)
King Hezekiah held stubbornly in the face of very unfavorable circumstances. He hunkered down before God and waited. And God showed up.
That night the angel of the Lord went out and put to death a hundred and eighty-five thousand in the Assyrian camp. When the people got up the next morning – there were all the dead bodies! So Sennacherib, King of Assyria broke camp and withdrew.
2 Kings 19: 35, 36 (NIV)
My friend is functioning on little sleep and using her family leave days to serve as her mom’s caregiver. But she is holding resolutely and stubbornly in the middle of unfavorable circumstances known as ‘life’. And God has shown up. Her latest email update included, “God has been so good in a difficult situation.” Amen and pass the ice cream.
Let’s Walk Worthy!
photo credit: gettyimages.com