It was 2:45 AM one morning when the phone rang in that hospital room. It was the boys’ night nurse calling to wake us so we could go to care time. As my hubby and I wandered down that hallway I remember thinking, “When am I ever going to see light at the end of this tunnel?” As I washed and scrubbed my hands at the door and walked into their little room I picked one of them up while Chase the other and my mind immediately transferred from that thought into action. Doing what they needed, it was all that mattered during those days. But as the days went on I kept thinking about that light. People would say not to worry that there is always light at the end of the tunnel, but I wasn’t sure. Then one day we got to start the countdown, seven days “event” free and the boys could go home!! That light! Finally! (An event was when they would stop breathing for lack of development and their oxygen dropped quickly) Qwade only had one event after that and was released eight days later. But Carter, he had trouble keeping his oxygen up, his heart rate up, and breathing without an event from the time he was born. But we kept praying and kept believing every day he would make it through and eventually he did. We got to bring them both home on Christmas Eve. Walking out of those hospital doors and walking through the door of our home was light at the end of that tunnel…. but it wasn’t there long. Just the beginning of another tunnel we would soon come to find out.
That light at the end of the tunnel… What is that? A survival tactic? Something to keep us persevering forward? At the time it was almost like an ending point in my mind, the point when they became healthy and strong. The point when I could relax as a new mom and settle into routine. And we did eventually get there, settled in I mean, but it took years. Seriously. And this whole time we were just surviving. Surviving one day at a time. One doctor visit at a time. One night at a time. One hospital visit at a time.
It wasn’t until recently that I really felt the Father say to me, “It isn’t about surviving anymore Tana, it is about thriving”. Wow, did that catch me off guard! We were used to surviving, it had become comfortable to us and it had made its home in our minds and our hearts. And I believe there is seasons in life where we do all that we can to just merely survive. But it was time for us to move on and the Father was urging us forward. He is calling us to move toward the Promised Land.
What if, as Christians, we decided it was time to move forward? To advance? To get moving toward all that it is Christ died to give us? God is love (1 John 4:8) but God also showed love by sending his only Son to die on the cross for us. Salvation is found in Jesus. And most believe this is the “light at the end of the tunnel”. But truly this is just the beginning! This is the beginning of a journey, a journey filled with mountains and valleys but all encompassed with love. His love. If we stopped at salvation how would we find freedom? Find hope? Find peace? Find victory over our survival seasons?! Just like if my hubby and I had chosen to stay in survival mode, would we enter the promised land that Jesus wants to give us? I don’t want to be the believer who dies saved, but lost in the wilderness broken and full of pain. It took the Israelite’s 40 years to make an 11 day journey to Canaan because they refused to break out of their bondage. I don’t want to spend the next 40 years lost and just trying to survive. I want to thrive.
What mountains in your life have you been stuck on? Take heart, Jesus is right there holding out his hand. Can we accept his invitation to move forward? To advance? Let’s get brave and press in and make that 11 day journey into the Promised Land.