A few weeks ago, my German shepherd chow mutt mix, Max, discovered up in a very traumatizing experience for him. It was another lovely sunny cool (low 70’s) day in the Phoenix area. Hot air balloonists were enjoying the perfect weather.
Late in the afternoon, we began to hear this rather loud sound, much like what I image a fire-breathing dragon might sound like, coming from what we thought was our neighbor’s yard. Imagine our surprise when we ran out into our back yard and watched as a hot air balloon tried not to land in our tiny 20 ft. by 60 ft. backyard.
Max and Ginger (our boxer mix) began barking furiously at this strange and frightening thing in the sky. While we were side tracked with taking pictures of the hot air balloon, Max, our scaredy-cat dog, jumped our 8 foot brick wall fence—yet again.
When we got him back two days later, he was much mellower, but he constantly looked up—something he had never done before. He would look at the ceiling fan, the ceiling, the dining room light, and the sky. He discovered up as a result of his hot air balloon experience.
After a long week at work and dealing with my recurring back troubles, I have been rather discouraged. Then, as I was reading my morning Bible study, the author asked the question: Can you think of a time in your life where you experienced a trial? Was your faith proved true?
Immediately I remembered Spring 2010. I started having trouble with my back again. Over the course of several months, I went through many different forms of treatment which finally led to a diagnosis. The source of my recurring back pain came from a ruptured disc.
As I was going through this tough time, I came across Isaiah 41:10, which has become my theme verse:
So do not fear, for I am with you;
do not be dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you;
I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.
I learned through those difficult times that God was my strength and that he would not leave me. However, over the course of a year, the lesson faded. Until this morning.
I rediscovered up when confronted with the question of whether my faith proved true. My faith had been tested and proved last year. But what about now? The past few days I’ve been discouraged and dismayed. I’m tired of dealing with back pain and I was beginning to feel sorry for myself. When I was reminded of a time my faith proved true, I was also reminded to look up, like Max does, and seek my source of strength again—God Almighty.