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This week I became aware of several things.  I don’t bounce very well at my age anymore, concrete parking lot markers are harder than they look, and I still have to fight to remember the truth.

I didn’t know it was possible to see stars until I tripped and fell in the dark in a parking lot and landed on one of those markers.  I felt like a cartoon character with little birdies and stars swirling above my head.  And somehow most every part of my body came in contact with the concrete marker.  The next day I ached in places that I know I couldn’t have possibly hit but still felt soreness there.

I stumbled around in the darkness of life this week too.  Tripping over something I didn’t expect, tumbling briefly to an emotional low, I ended up bruised and banged up to say the least. I lost sight of the path I should have been on and fell to my knees.

Ratings….reviews….opinions….
Inspections….disapproval….rejections….

Life is full of them.  Some expected, some not.

My job requires that I rate, inspect, and review another’s performance at work.  I try to do this carefully and to encourage the good, not just point out the negatives or weaknesses.

But what if your calling, or your life’s ambition, or even your dream is scrutinized and criticized?  OUCH!  Those low blows can cause your feet to come right out from under you and you will find yourself face down kissing the concrete.

In those moments in life of being face to face with asphalt, you hurt, wonder, doubt, ache, question.
“Why was I even headed this way in the first place?  I can’t stand on my own two feet, much less walk with head held high!”

These were my thoughts this week when my dream, my ambition, my calling was challenged, rated, criticized.  Even though I KNOW ratings and criticism is part of it all, and something I do and should expect, it appeared unexpectedly, like a parking lot marker in the dark.  Unseen and unexpected and unwanted.

I realize now the relationship between truth and darkness.  We always compare truth and lies, but truth and darkness seem to be in as close a relationship as truth and lies

Lies come from darkness.  Truth comes from light.  In the light, I can see.  I know the truth.  In the darkness, I can’t see and stumble on every obstacle in my way.  In the darkness, lies have a tendency to overshadow what we once so very strongly believed.

It’s easy to believe the lies in the darkness, especially face down on the concrete with ratings, reviews, opinions, and rejections SCREAMING or even WHISPERING in your ears.  Most everything we do will be scrutinized, from the biggest to the smallest of things.

The question is this:  What will you do face down on the concrete? In the dark? Bruised and banged up and hurting?

Stay down, listen to the lies, and quit? OR Get back up, wipe your tears, and remember? Remember the truth.

That’s exactly what I had to do this week when my dream seemed unreachable and insignificant to others.  I didn’t want to get back up, but if I don’t, I risk losing what my heart wants to do, to be. That’s not a risk I am willing to take.

In the dark, seek the light and truth.  
Here’s a list of some of my favorite TRUTHS:

God will go with you, sustain you, and strengthen you. (Psalm 89:21, 22)
You are His beloved, He believes in you. (Rom. 1:7)
He will be your confidence. (Prov. 3:21, 26)
He will deliver you—no matter what. (Psalm 18:19)
He will hear you if you ask for help today. (Prov. 3:21)
Even if chaos abounds, you will experience perfect peace. (Isaiah 26:3)
The waters may rise; but they won’t overtake you. (Isaiah 43:2)
You do not labor in vain. (Isaiah 65:23)
He will reward you. (Psalm 18:20)
If you are called to wait on Him, you’re gonna be okay there. (Isaiah 30:18)
He will fill you when you need it—just like He always has. (Psalm 81:10)
You will have the things you need. (Psalm 34:9)
God will restore your soul. (Psalm 23:3)
You will keep going and not grow weary. (Isaiah 40:13)
If you mess up, He will abundantly pardon. (Isaiah 55:7)
You’ve got blessings waiting around the corner. (Psalm 24:4-5)
He’ll guide you through the rough spots and help you do the right thing. (Psalm 25:9)
Your soul will be at ease amid the storm. (Psalm 25:12-13)
You’re stronger than you think—because He will strengthen your heart. (Psalm 27:14)
Angels are encamped around you. (Psalm 34:7)
The troubles of this day can’t stand up to His power. (Psalm 34:17)
You will experience supernatural peace. (Psalm 37:11)
He will be the order that covers your disorder. (Psalms 37:23-24)
He will deliver you from wicked, conspiring people around you. (Psalm 37:40)
He will hold all the pieces of your life together. (Psalm 46:1)
He will keep you safe under His mighty wings. (Psalm 91:1)
Carry on through sadness. He will replace your tears with joy. (Psalm 126:5)
He’s going to tame your doubt and fulfill that dream in your heart. (Psalm 37:4)
He will provide everything—He’s your need-filler. (Psalm 23:1)
Have confidence. He will make His words known to you. (Prov. 1:23)
Surrender your view of things and people—He will give you spiritual eyes. (Psalm 146:8)
If you seek Him, you will find Him. (2 Chronicles 15:2)
With each day, you are growing stronger and stronger. (Job 17:9)
He’s got wisdom ready for you to use. (Prov. 2:7)
You will lay down tonight and have sweet sleep. (Prov. 3:21)
He loves you to eternity and back. (Psalm 146:8)
His covenant of Love to you will never, ever fail. (Psalm 89:28)