Getting Unstuck

My friend Trudie just got a huge double stroller. Like the kind that might take up the majority of an elevator. Which is exactly what happened a couple weeks ago at a local science museum.

My husband and two girls got in first, followed by Trudie’s three-year-old, and then Trudie with her baby and stroller. (Did I mention this thing is giant?) The young maintenance man in the corner pressed himself into the wall and stared as I tried to squeeze myself past the stroller’s handle into the one empty square foot of space beside Trudie.

I tried.

And failed.

As the handle pressed into my rib cage, the elevator doors closed on my undignified hind end. Over and over. By the time I managed to turn the stroller just enough to let me in, my friend and husband were laughing out loud, while the maintenance man (bless his dreadlocked head) worked hard to hold it in. And all I could think of was how it must have looked from behind.

This is funny to me now, but in the moment I was pushing on that stroller and the elevator door was squeezing my rump, I felt a bit panicky. Being stuck is no fun.

Sometimes it takes some work, a bit of wrestling, to get unstuck.

Hard seasons come. This is a guaranteed part of life, one my family is walking through right now.

But hard times also go. And that can be easy to forget in the middle.

I’ve seen it happen. I’ve felt the pull of it myself – the temptation to believe that the hard things will always keep and define me.

The wounded missionary who had to come home.

The exhausted mom dealing with grieving kids.

The woman whose health has gone haywire.

We all have had areas like this, I think. Places we’ve been broken and feel a little crippled now.

The progress forward out of pain and into the next season can be excruciatingly slow, so slow that at times it may feel like a stand still.

And it can be awkward and pretty ridiculous looking from the outside.

But even slow motion is motion, and the friction that makes healing hard work is the same pressure that rubs us smooth and polishes us to shine. So let’s lean into the awkward, my friend. Our sense of balance may have changed, and our steps will probably never look quite like they did before, but you and I are free to dance. Our dance may be sluggish right now, but let’s dance anyway, one step and then another step forward. Let this season take the time it takes as we slow dance into the victory we have as passionately loved children of the Living God.

Because that, my friend, is who we really are.

“We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed.” ~2 Corinthians 4:8-9 (NIV)


  1. Shirley Hailey
    Oct 14, 2016

    I thank God for my precious friend, Marcia Parsley, who was obedient to His “nudging” to share this with me today. And even more, I thank Him that He ALWAYS provides the PERFECT “word in season.” The verse at the end was EXACTLY what I needed! I was fired this morning from a MUCH-needed job that I’ve only had for two and a half weeks, and I THOUGHT I was very secure. Being fired was the LAST thing I expected…I had been looking for a long time, and I TRULY thought it was an answer to prayer. I can’t share the whole story right now, but it would appear that my being there caused “connections” that have already lead to a BETTER situation — better than I could have dreamed. God’s grace and faithfulness to His word…how does ANYONE live without Him???

    Nov 3, 2016

    Is there a way to follow you, that is not through RSS Feed? The RSS feed will not load the page properly.

    • beth
      Nov 10, 2016

      I’m not sure what’s going on with the RSS Feed, but I’ll check into it. Thanks for letting me know!

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