Like Palm Trees

“For My strength is made perfect in weakness.”
2 Corinthians 12:9

Oh, how true this is. This verse has carried me through these last few months.

Transitioning back to Mexico with a six week old was a lot more difficult than I thought. I thought, “if we can just get through the first week and get moved into our new place it’ll be easy from then on.” What in the world was I thinking?

In fact, after the first week, I found days getting longer and harder. I cried a lot of tears the first month of being back in Mexico. Titus wasn’t the easiest baby having colic and I didn’t know how to drive our stick shift car around much less carry a newborn while trying to get groceries all while unpacking our new house. I felt so weak and vulnerable and had no idea if I was doing this whole “mothering thing” right. I doubted myself constantly.

During this time, Nate was gone on a trip and my friends came around me and brought me meals, helped me clean and unpack. My friends were truly Christ to me during this time! I finally realized that the place I was in was good. Hard, but good. I was completely humbled before God, recognizing how weak I am in my own flesh.

I realize now what a gift it is to live in Mexico! The culture, the friendships, the differences are all what make it so unique. I am thankful for the difficult transition and not being able to speak Spanish fluently or know what store to go to to get a certain item….or understand the traffic rules as I figure out how to drive on the roads here (surprise there are none)! During this time is when I grew closer to my Lord as I needed him every moment.

The other day, as I was walking past these huge palm trees, I couldn’t help but notice how tall and strong they were. I thought, “I want to be like these palm trees. Strong and secure and strongly rooted.” I found the verse in Psalms 92 where it says, “But the godly will flourish like palm trees and grow strong like the cedars of Lebanon.”

It’s funny, but these particular moments of difficulty and growing pains are when I felt most rooted. God didn’t stop Titus from screaming all day. He didn’t make him magically start sleeping at night. I found rest in Christ when I was trying to calm my colic baby, in the sleepless nights, in the fear of miscommunication when looking for something in the store and in knowing I was not enough as a wife or mother and certainly enough to pour into others around us.

Ironically, I found victory in this weakness. These moments are what help continue to build my foundation as a wife, mother, and friend. I don’t want my life to always be “one way”, whether that’s easy or hard. I want to be like Paul, who found contentment in every circumstance because of His relationship and commitment to Christ. Even now, as I continue to seek His direction and guidance, I remind myself it is not the answer I am looking for, but His face. As we seek Him, all of these things will come. Christ himself is our greatest victory in all things!

Haley Tew, GEM Missionary