Bella Photography

Fetal Position

 

Bella Photography

Daddy’s Shoulder

Crisp colored leaves are falling on my street and the air in Colorado is a little frostier. White snow has even fallen once already in our neighborhood, and even trees have snapped from the weight of the wet and heavy blanket of flakes. The seasons are changing right before my eyes.

Because all of my babies were born in autumn, in just a matter of months our house will be filled with a 6 year old, a 12 year old, and a 16 year old…yep, time just doesn’t stand still. These children are growing and maturing and changing, just like the scenery that surrounds them.

Our family is also undergoing a major change: we are moving.

After 11 years in the Denver Metro area, we find ourselves at the end of one chapter in the story of our life, as well as beginning a new chapter in a new location. Here’s what it looks like…roughly:

Prepping our house for sale.

Coaching our kids through the upcoming changes.

Finding new schools, resources, hang-outs, and health care providers…you name it.

Plus trying to navigate how to finish well where we are currently planted.

We are discovering what a new normal looks like while we are in the “in-between” stage altogether:).

Lots of change. Lots of unknowns.

Now, not all of this is difficult, but my mind hasn’t been able to correctly communicate this to my body. After feeling out-of-wack for a few weeks, I decided to visit a massage therapist. I asked my therapist why I was slouching. Their words haven’t left me:

“When we are experiencing mental, emotional, or physical stress, our bodies naturally will try to revert back to a fetal position to provide us with some sense of comfort.”

Yikes. Fetal Position.

The truth is, we all experience stress. Even the people that look as if they have never had a stressful day in their life deal with it. We may all experience stress, but how do our bodies process through it?

Apparently, my body is trying to fold under the pressure, much like the tightly tucked-in limbs of a baby.

Now, I love to see brand-new babies all bundled up. But I recognize that those precious little limbs were meant to grow, and stretch beyond their original position. It’s even a little funny to see a newborn try to stretch; their body doesn’t gracefully extend out…it jerks and even shivers into new positions. Sometimes I wonder if that is what my season looks like to God:

-While He is allowing my season to change, and while I am figuring out how to process through stress the right way, am I jerking around into new positions or am I gently bending into the form he so desires my heart to have? Am I allowing myself to fold under the pressure or am I allowing my heart to be transformed by His hand?

Now let’s be real, and answer these questions together: Have you ever felt the weight of the unknown on your shoulders? Is anything weighing heavy on your heart today friend? Is your physical body trying sending you clues about the condition of your heart?Me too.

The circumstances around us, the news and media coverage of tragic events, the prayer requests from friends, and the great unknowns of upcoming changes can all weigh on us; pulling and tugging our hearts and minds into positions they weren’t meant to stay in.We may feel distressed – but we don’t have to stay there. I’m a huge believer that many times what is happening in our physical being is just a representation of what is happening in our spiritual being. Our bodies might look weary and bent out of shape because our spirit is crying out to change or shift position. It is a measure used when we want to revert back to feeling secure, known, and fully held. And Who knew us in the womb when we were scrunched up in our mama’s belly?

God.

“For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place, when I was woven together in the depths of the earth. Your eyes saw my unformed body; all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be. How precious to me are your thoughts, God! How vast is the sum of them! Were I to count them, they would outnumber the grains of sand— when I awake, I am still with you.” (Psalm 139:13-18 NIV)

Friend, He knows us and nothing was hidden from Him.

God, Our Father and Creator, saw the entirety of our life before any of the cells formed. God saw every detail; the steps we’d take, the missteps, the dreams, the hard times, and the tragedies that would surround and affect us. His watchful eye saw the decisions we’d make, the adventures we’d go on and the times of obedience we’d walk through. He saw all the stress that would pop up. He also saw how we would choose to let it affect us.

Before we had a heartbeat He saw how we would raise our hands in praise and in surrender. He saw how His strength would rise within us. Before we drew our first breath, He saw how we’d choose to straighten up from our fetal positions and grow and mature and stretch out our hands before him while bowing our hearts in reverence. He beheld how we would not be over come by fear and stress, but how we would overcome fear by the powerful truth of His Word. He saw it all then and He sees us now friend.

Let’s pray:

Lord God, I choose today to evaluate my posture before You. God, my whole being may feel like buckling under the pressure of my current stresses but I choose to remember that my comfort and security comes from You alone. God, change the condition of my heart and make me pliable in Your hands. It was Your hands Lord that formed and fashioned me in the secret place, and it is Your hands that are holding me still. Thank Your Lord for being my strength, and for surrounding me with Your love and mercy and tenderness today just as you did when You created me. I will praise You because You are God and You know exactly what You are doing – no matter the season or position I may find myself in. Let Your will be done Lord. May my posture reflect a heart that trusts You today and everyday. Amen.