“Observe the ant,” the great oriental conquerorTamerlane told his friends. In relating a story from his early life, he said, “I once was forced to take shelter from my enemies in a dilapidated building,where I sat alone for many hours.
Wishing to divert my mind from my hopeless situation, I fixed my eyes on an ant carrying a kernel of corn larger than itself up a high wall. I counted its attempts to accomplish this feat. The corn fell sixty-nine times to the ground, but the insect persevered. The seventieth time it reached the top. The ant’s accomplishment gave me courage for the moment, and I never forgot the lesson.” (Quoted in Streams in the Desert devotional, from The King’s Business.)
Tamerlane was a Central Asian conqueror and a brilliant military leader in the late 1300s who fought without wavering and gained control of a vast region including Iraq, Armenia, Mesopotamia, Georgia, Russia, and parts of India. He died on an expedition to conquer China.
So how do we relate Tamerlane to our stepfamily journey? Stepparenting requires unwavering effort. And we may not accomplish all that we desire in our lifetime. But that doesn’t mean we quit.
We may not see the rewards that Tamerlane did either. We might see very few earthly rewards. But God recognizes our efforts and will reward us.
I’ve been praying for a precious two-year-old girl, Stella, who was recently diagnosed with a brain tumor. Her parents lost her sister, Charlotte, a few years ago to a different illness and were devastated when yet another child was handed a dismal prognosis. Yet, despite the overwhelming odds, their prayers for their daughter’s healing are unwavering.
As I read the mom’s CaringBridge post this morning, her raw emotions tugged at my heart, but she doesn’t stop asking for a miracle for her baby. Here is an excerpt:
“So it seems the cancer cells are putting pressure on the brain causing Stella to have seizures. They currently have her heavily sedated while they attempt to control the seizures. As far as I am concerned nothing revealed on the current MRI will change that this is a setback and we have to push on. Dr Saylors confirms this and we are not quitting hoping and praying that our final result will be the complete healing of our Stella Rose.
We are battered but not broken. So many parts of this are reminiscent of watching our Charlotte and I can say this is difficult for everyone who sees her. She is hooked up to a lot of tubes right now, had many fluids and is swollen because of this. …
Pray for the seizures to get well controlled with medications, pray we get to start chemo as planned and pray we get our Stella back before the next step begins. As always ask God for a miracle.“
Does your stepfamily need a miracle? Will you commit to unwavering effort and prayers on your stepfamily journey?