Monday, March 7, 2011

Sucking the Snot Out

Will has a stuffy nose. He has had one for quite awhile now, and it just won't go away! He's not fever, no other symptoms...just a stuffy nose. Unfortunately, babies can't blow their noses. Believe me...I've tried. I will hold the tissue up to Will's nose and say, "Will, blow," but apparently that means nothing to him.  So, I've spent a lot of time lately sucking the snot out.

I bought a cute little kit with some saline drops and a small nasal aspirator (which I refer to as "the sucky thing"). I squirt one drop in each nostril, then do my best to suck all the snot out with the sucky thing. Will hates this. HATES it! He kicks and screams and moves his head away, and I feel like a horrible person for trying to suck the snot out of his nose. Every time I do it, I tell him..."I'm only doing this because I love you. I know you hate it, but it's going to make you feel better."

Yesterday, in the high school Sunday School class Theron and I teach, we were talking about dealing with difficult times in our lives. The lesson was about placing our hope in Christ and in our salvation through him. As we discussed how we deal with the difficult times in our lives, we started talking about why God allows us to go through these difficult times in the first place.

Suddenly, sucking the snot out of Will's nose popped into my mind. It only could have been a thought from God! It made so much sense, though. I suck the snot out of Will's nose because I know what is best for him. He doesn't like it. It probably hurts, it's irritating, and it's just no fun at all. Will kicks and screams and fights me the whole way, but in the end, he can breathe! I get the snot cleared out, and he feels so much better. His breathing is better, he can eat better, sleep better, and so on.

Sometimes, God has to suck the snot out of our lives. He allows us to go through difficult times because He knows what's best for us. We may not like it. It might hurt. It might be irritating. It might be no fun at all. We probably kick and scream and fight Him the whole way. However, we're only looking at what's going on right then (the snot sucking), and we can't always see the end result (the clear nose). We may not see the end result for a long time, and we may never fully understand it. In the end, though, God knows what's best for us, and He knows exactly what we need. Allowing us to experience pain, suffering, turmoil, and all sorts of difficult times, helps to strengthen our faith. Romans 5:3-4 (NIV) tells us...we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope.  

Having our snot sucked out may not be fun, but we have to trust it is what's best. Oh, the lessons you can learn from a 3-month-old.

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