The Princess groaned inwardly and stared into her coffee mug as she sat on her veranda and listened to the Minstrel moan and complain about life as a single parent. It was discouraging. He wasn’t a special case. She was leading her family by herself, and working.
She wished for the man the King had promised her, but there were no signs. The King had said that he was out of sight. He certainly was. Perhaps it was because he did not exist. Perhaps she had imagined the King’s promise. She felt discouraged and worried about the future.
She knew that the Minstrel wasn’t the one the King had promised, especially after meeting his father, a forceful man with an aura of violence about him. The father believed that she was the wife for his son he’d prayed for. She had a dream the night after meeting the father, of two bulls butting their heads together. She consulted her dream dictionary; “If a woman encounters a bull, she will be likely to receive a proposal of marriage, but she should not accept it. It was a good enough warning to “steer clear”.
After she had skirted around the bulls, and their droppings, the path led through a place called “the Flatlands”. There, the land was bland and featureless, the path flat. She wearily trod through the unendingly monotonous landscape, accompanied by other negative people. A few months into the journey through the Flatlands, her head dropped, her feet dragged and her morale flagged. She cried out to the Lord “My God, I cannot stand this place anymore! This must be the wrong path. Please, help me return to the Kingdom across the Tasman. I know I will fare better over there!”
The King came alongside the unhappy Princess and listened to her complaint. All she could see were obstacles. “Look at my limitations” she cried. He challenged her and encouraged her, saying;
“Look to the rock from which you were cut, And to the quarry from which you were hewn;” Isaiah 51:1
The King was speaking of the people she had come from. She knew that her Great-great Grandmother lost her hearing from sea sickness, after enduring 105 days at sea. The King told the Princess that she knew she would forever be a stranger in a strange land, prevented by deafness from ever learning English. In the silence and the loneliness, the King’s voice became the only voice that she could hear.
Her Grandfather was struck with blindness in his late twenties. He accepted his cruel world of darkness stoically, with courage and no complaint. He adjusted and carved out his business farming an unseen land. The King remembered him with compassion as He said “Your grandfather spent over 50 years having to watch every step he made.”
The Princess knew her Grandfather had great difficulty in coming to the King at the end of his life, because of his suffering. Only when the Minister told him that “Christ had suffered too” was he able to trust the Lord.
The Princess met the Kings eyes as she said “The deaf and the blind are a hard quarry to be cut from.” The King replied “My righteousness will last forever, my salvation through all generations”. Isaiah 51:8
She bowed to the King and said “They were no strangers to suffering. If they could overcome those giants, then I can overcome these small ones. I am sorry I was negative. Please forgive the pity party I threw for myself.” The King instantly forgave her, and bade her to remember that she could do all things through Him who gave her strength.
“I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” Philippians 4:13
In a more positive frame of mind, she said “My only troubles are my perceived limitations. What can I do to get out of this place?” she asked. The King replied “There are others on the path you will soon meet. Go and meet them. Also, go play your favourite sport. Leap and run!” She acted on His advice, joined a new home group and a netball team. In little more than a month she found new and interesting people on the path, who loved the King. The sport provided another outlet for her. She was soon back on track and very busy.
She felt she was slowly being restored to life, albeit a different life than the one she led when she was married. One day in early autumn she listened to the cicadas as they sang of their brief life in the sun, and thought about the future. “I want to be true to myself” she told the King. “I want a life lived not just for the sake of other people, but for me as well. Thank you for helping me to get to a more positive place.” Smiling at her, the King spoke “I am your Lord. When you take one step towards me, I will take two steps towards you.”