There is beauty in being present, even in the soul-piercing moments of life. Today, I celebrated being eight weeks post-surgery. These weeks have held several experiences that have left an indelible mark on my heart. Some moments were joy-packed, overflowing with gratitude, and smiling from ear-to-ear memories I will cherish. At the same time, some left me agonizing in sorrow, questioning my place in this world.
I wonder how many times Mary pondered moments that gutted her to the core? In Luke 2:34-35 we read,
Then Simeon blessed them and told his mother Mary, “Indeed, this child is destined to cause the fall and rise of many in Israel and to be a sign that will be opposed — and a sword will pierce your own soul — that the thoughts of many hearts may be revealed.”
Luke 2:34-35 CSB
Mary would have had first-hand knowledge of how the swords of life can mold and shape us into the people God designed us to be.
What is a soul-piercing moment?
A tragic loss. Or a handwritten note that expresses heartfelt gratitude for how you’ve impacted someone’s life. A child’s gaze. Or a painful visit to a physical therapist. Achieving your long time fitness goal. Basically, it’s a moment that tranforms our faith in God’s sovereignty.
Now that I have a name for these experiences, I’m learning to embrace the moments that penetrate my core beliefs. I believe that these teachable moments guide us higher up and deeper into His presence. Where we are stronger, gentler, and loving…more like Christ. In those times that knock the wind out of our spirits, or leave us breathless with gratitude, we discover what we are capable of and the depth of our faith.
Soul-piercing Makes Us Vulnerable
Vulnerability can break our hearts but fix our vision. The heights of joy and the pit of pain have one thing in common, God is in them in equal measure. And in the presence of the Lord our souls prosper. We gain compassion, empathy, wisdom, and insight. Let’s stop leaning on our own understanding and come to know Him in every aspect of ourselves. It’s not always an instantaneous event. Sometimes it’s a process. A tedious unwanted journey. But, like Mary, we can learn to treasure each experience, turn it over and look at it from every angle in order for our Refiner to smooth over the rough edges of life. I’m grateful that we can transform and evolve through the soul-piercing moments God allows into our lives.