Wouldn’t it be neat whenever we sense a need for renovation to do a flip? I’m not speaking in terms of real estate. Sometimes I think I’d like to trade any bad, static experiences in life for good, seeking a fresh perspective. A few words sweep into my mind for how to get there. “…be transformed by the renewing of your mind,” (Romans 12:2) and, “…in all things God works for the good of those who love him,” (Romans 8:28). The motivation of flipping negatives for positives rather than flipping out holds a more promising outcome, for sure. On the other hand, the ability to appreciate the good things is oft times amplified by having encountered the bad. Yin and yang, as many would say. #iamonlyhuman
The Unspeakable (Puma) is now in its second edition, a version with the same storyline but repackaged. Newly categorized under Christian Suspense, and International Mystery & Crime, if you have not yet read this book I invite you to do so – though it might keep you up at night.
When bad things happen to good people, what then?
When a furtive conflict is pitted between violent leftist guerrillas and a rightwing paramilitary group in Colombia, a North American woman mistakenly gets caught in the middle.
“I spent four months, one week and two days in a clandestine prison referred to as The Water Cave. Every day I stared hell in the face, and each day I wanted to die. I don’t want to share too much too quickly. To understand fully, you must join hands with me, fasten your heart to mine, and course through my book. Stumble over the incomprehensible human rights journey with me. I've pondered it to the brink of questionable sanity, and it's the only way to explain. I suppose I should consider myself lucky I survived at all—for many did not—yet, perplexingly so, that’s not the premise of this narrative.
He altered my life, marked me forever.
But it’s not how you might imagine.
This is a story involving Horacio Botello, my torturer known as Puma.”
Might be overused, but I still favor the phrase It is what it is. In some situations it’s really the best description. For example, when a circumstance is such that you pray for change yet change doesn’t come. In spite of valiant efforts, if something doesn’t transform, at some point you have to toss your hands to the heavens and say, “It is what it is,” in order to move forward.
There’s something of a comfort in the act of simply accepting a condition even though it’s not at all what you desired.
It is what it is . . . a reminder, a mindset, that I’m not the one in control. I never was nor will be. The One who holds the fact, future, and hope is what it is. I could choose to fret and clamor for something evidently futile, or trust to learn from, grow, and progress through an experience. Fretting or
trusting today, which will it be?
Lightning struck the house. Well, the bolt actually hit a tree next to the house, but it went to ground and fried all electronics not surge protected (use those surge suppressors, they work!). As the week progressed, more items lengthened the “all-lost” list—including heating/air-conditioning units. Let me tell you, it added up fast.
Without much rehashing, I’m just going to vouch that it’s been a stormy season for this family, and I wonder when, when will things stabilize again. . . . In a very human moment I whined, “God, why are you knocking us down at every turn?” As I asked this while outside, surmising the strike zone, something dawned on me. The second highest level to that towering tree was the peak to my son’s bedroom. Suddenly, I had a different outlook - one of protection and gratitude.
It’s all about perspective, because no matter how bad things get it could always be worse. You know what they say . . . “When down in the mouth, remember Jonah. He came out all right!”