Life Trials: Looking Beyond the Fog

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The other morning, I peeked out our window at o’dark hundred. The weak glow of the nearby street attempted to cut through the fog on our street. A couple hours later, I drove four active children to school in soft sunlight and no fog in our neighborhood. As I drove, I glanced toward the mountains.

What met my eyes took my breath away. A clear blue sky and the largest mountain in our area stood proud, crowned with a covering of snow. But below it, thick rolling clouds blanketed the western side of our city. The sun shining on the clouds from our vantage point reflected off the tops with a shine. Whites and grays—some clouds resembled waves rolling into shore. It looked beautiful from outside the fog.

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Image courtesy of Evgeni Dinev at freedigitalphotos.net

Now, that being said, I’ve also been the one driving in the fog. In the middle of it, gray dominates everything. It mutes colors, hiding all but vague outlines of homes, streetlights and other things along the side of the road.

It got me thinking about the “fog” I face in my life sometimes.

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Image courtesy of mack2happy at freedigitalphotos.net

  • Being in the middle of a fog for long enough can steal all the color, the joy of life. When I’m in the middle of a fog-inducing trial, I need to choose to keep my eyes on Jesus. It’s only by looking at my circumstances through His lenses that I can see life’s vibrancy in the midst of the gray.
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Image courtesy of Evgeni Dinev at freedigitalphotos.net

  • Fog doesn’t stay around forever. The sun will burn it away, or temperatures will warm enough to cause it to dissipate. When fog descends in my life, I can remember it’s only for a season. The Son walks with me through the trials. When my eyes are on Him, I find hope to bring me through the thickest fog.
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Image courtesy of Evgeni Dinev at freedigitalphotos.net

  • When driving in fog, I must stay alert to other vehicles, signs and stoplights so I don’t run into something or someone. When walking through a trial, I need to remain alert to those around me. Rather than keeping my eyes on myself, I can look two places. First to Jesus, who will guide me through the most difficult circumstances. And second toward others. I’m learning that no matter what trial I’m walking through, someone else is going through a harder time. Sometimes joy hides in the places where I look beyond myself to encourage and walk alongside another for a little while.

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  • I will come out of the fog. Jesus will guide me through the trials and struggles. When I look back on that season, I will see the beauty He crafted in the fog.

What about you? Have you ever driven through fog? What helps you get through trials?

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12 thoughts on “Life Trials: Looking Beyond the Fog

  1. The past few years have been pretty foggy!

    In 2011 I lost my college teaching job, and the way in which the termination was handled wrecked my prospects for another. My health also went downhill, and the loss of insurance made treatment impossible.

    I really didn’t know what to do, until the fog began clearing, and I realized that it wan’t really about me.

    The change in circumstance allowed my wife to land the kind of job she had before we were married, and she’s happier now than she has been in years.

    Would I rewrite history to give me back my career?

    No way. Mine had to die so Barbara’s could live. I’d walk through that fog again.

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    • Andrew, I love the perspective you bring to this post. And the ways you are able to fulfill your wife. Sometimes it takes time to see our way beyond the fog. It sounds like you’ve been able to do that.

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  2. You know I’ve had some fog over the past year myself! It’s been interesting how my focus has been narrowed so extremely….to what I can accomplish in a day. (A lot less than in all the other years of my life!) Yet you are so right, Jeanne; Jesus is with us in the fog….waiting, loving, holding our hands to lead us through. Wait, watch, pray, seek, rest. Fog is not such a bad thing.

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    • Yes, it’s interesting how when the fog obscures the less important, we develop an ability to focus on what should be our priorities. Having Someone walk with us through the fog comforts and reassures when it’s at its thickest. 🙂

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  3. Fog always gives me a soft, comfy feeling. I have no idea why…maybe on the mountains, it makes things seem smaller and cozier. But that metaphorical fog in life stinks! That not knowing…but maybe that’s the time, like you say, to feel CLOSE to others and reach out to them. In our pain, we can touch others. Then when the sun blazes into our uncertainty, we can feel our waiting time wasn’t wasted. Great thoughts today, Jeanne. Love visuals like this!

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    • Heather, I’m so glad you stopped by! I love watching the fog and the pictures it paints when I’m inside my warm house. 🙂 Walking through a foggy patch in life doesn’t leave me with that same feeling. Waiting and uncertainty are difficult types of fog to wade through, aren’t they? I loved this: “Then when the sun blazes into our uncertainty, we can feel our waiting time wasn’t wasted.”

      Thanks for adding to the conversation, Heather!

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  4. Growing up in Vancouver, right beside the ocean, fog was a huge problem. In fall especially. The upper elevations had bright blue sky and the sea level parts of town were dreary, cold and dangerous.
    Driving in fog is deadly and everyone knows to go slow and maintain a safe braking distance. But there’s always someone who thinks they are invincible.

    But ahhhh, when the sun breaks through? You can hear the collective sigh of relief!!

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    • I think driving in the fog at night can be a most eery, scary thing to do. It’s even harder to see people then. Gotta love the marine layer. 🙂 Yes, when the sun breaks through, it really frees something within us, doesn’t it?

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  5. I’ll be honest…fog freaks me out. We don’t really get it here, but I’ve driven in it before and yeah…the whole “I can’t see where I’m going thing” is not so good. BUT when applied to life, like you have done, that’s such an incredible message. Because even though we can only see three feet in front of us, God can see a mile (well, further actually). And if I trust him, He’ll navigate me safely through the fog.

    Love your thoughts on keeping others safe. We can’t let our own freak-out moments hurt others. That feeling of insecurity and doubt are no excuse.

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    • Loved this, Lindsay: “We can’t let our own freak-out moments hurt others. That feeling of insecurity and doubt are no excuse.” Sometimes those create their own fog in our lives. And you’re right, we can’t let them obscure the truth and keep us from living in it. Love your thoughts!

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