Online dictionaries tell me that the origin of the phrase, “…come Hell or high water…” is used when you intend to do something regardless of the difficulty involved. It might be something like the settlers in the American West of early Nineteenth Century undertook. Certainly, the trek of fifteen hundred miles by wagon or on foot, across a wilderness, forests, plains and deserts to find a new home qualifies. In my lifetime, overcoming a fear of heights by ascending a mast to perform routine maintenance as a Sailor in the Navy was my ‘high water’ mark. A year ago, my challenge was to lose thirty or more pounds, eat healthier, and change the old man I saw in the mirror to someone I happily recognize.
I feel a little sheepish writing about difficulties on a Saturday, when the worst my dogs and I face on a walk is the probability of getting wet. Yet this is a day that I promised myself and my wife to perform some routine maintenance in the house. For the last few weeks I have been discouraged, inwardly, as confidence in my abilities, and my memory (misplacing things like car keys, very expensive company hardware, etc) is challenged. Whether home, with plumbing issues, or at work, performing tasks I should know expertly (it has been my profession for thirty years), I am catching myself procrastinating. Lately, I now have to decide what my family is able to do in a matter involving an aging relative. My last foray into a difficult family matter resulted in strained finances and relationships.
After spending an hour this morning in a Bible study, prayer and walk along Lake Murray in La Mesa, I realized that the right heart and mindset is half the battle. Monthly, several of my church brethren gather over donuts and coffee to hear the Word of God. And pray. At the park, Dexter and Comet get attention and a long walk with men they excitedly greet. With the scripture upon our hearts about running the race marked out for us, and persevering, I was less apprehensive about tackling a toilet, or deciding what I could do to assist my relative ( I am 1800 miles away on the other side of the country).
An hour after a visit to the local hardware store, I had repaired both toilets that were causing us a high water bill by leaking. I am taking the necessary steps to deal with other home maintenance issues including getting lots of advice. And leaving certain situations up to God by specifically-focused prayer. That was the encouragement I got from one of my Brothers this morning.
12 Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us,Hebrew 12: 1 (NIV)
As the rain begins to beat down this afternoon, I am in a better frame of mind. The roof is solid. The house is warm and dry. Our grandson is spending the day with us, and whenever he is with us, I am encouraged. Let the winds blow and the rain fall, Dexter, Comet and the family are on high ground.