Don’t let a few bumps stop you

Published 1:25 pm Friday, June 7, 2019

Raegan is approaching nineteen months old, and in less than two years it is amazing how much she has learned.  Among those things, she has discovered what the rest of our little girls have found—a lot of good stuff is to be had at Nana’s and Papa’s house.  Included in the treats at our house is those little inexpensive popsicles; you can buy a big box of them for just a little money but the amount of enjoyment that those little girls get out of them is priceless.  So when she gets to our house she knows where the freezer is and she quickly makes her request for a “possicle”.  And Nana and Papa are always willing to grant her request.

But everything that she has experienced in her nineteen months has not been pleasant.  In fact, at times she looks like she has experienced some horrible neglect with all the bruises, scratches, and bumps that her mishaps have inflicted on her little body.  Obviously, none of those minor injuries have anything to do with neglect, they are merely evidence that she is experiencing the realities of life—which includes a few unpleasant episodes.  In fact, I witnessed one of them a few weeks back when she was at our house.  As she tumbled off the couch in what looked like slow motion, I was on the other side of the room and could not do anything to break her fall.  Her little head took a bump on the floor which resulted in a loud crying episode that quickly passed and no serious injury was inflicted.

I am sure that none of Reagan’s little accidents were pleasant and I am equally confident that there are more of those to come, but the good part is that none of them have hindered her from continuing to experience life and learn new things, even if some of those lessons and encounters come with a little temporary pain.  She does not let a few bumps stop her.

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We all have discovered by now that the bumps of life do not stop at age two, or twenty, or sixty—they come with the deal of life.  And in our spiritual journey of growing in our relationship with God there are some painful lessons there too, but the solution is not to quit but to continue on with God’s help.  Many Biblical characters were familiar with the growing spiritual pains that were necessary to get them where God wanted them to be.  One who could speak with experience on the topic was a great man of God by the name of Paul.

In Acts 20, Paul wrote of his determination to keep following God’s plan in spite of the bumps that he was sure that he would experience.  On one occasion he wrote to a group of church leaders, “And now, compelled by the Spirit, I am going to Jerusalem, not knowing what will happen to me there.  I only know that in every city the Holy Spirit warns me that prison and hardships are facing me” (Verses 22-23, New International Version).  The warning of hardship ahead did not deter him from pressing on with God’s plan for his life.  And he was indeed met with hardships and imprisonments as he advanced ahead in his work for God, but neither did that stop him from preaching the Gospel.  Quite the opposite, for he saw those hardships as not hindrances but as opportunities to enable him to more thoroughly tell others about the way of Christ.  He even declared from prison that “Now I want you to know, brothers, that what has happened to me has really served to advance the Gospel” (Philippians 1:12).

There will be a few bumps in life.  They didn’t stop Paul.  They didn’t stop Raegan.  And don’t let them stop you either.  Press ahead with God’s plan for your life.