This originally was written for Western Hills as a weekly devo.
Allow me to introduce you to some English family slang – pear-shaped. When something goes pear-shaped – it means that something or some experience had the promise of being very, very good but it didn’t. It went…pear-shaped instead.
The term works on a couple of levels. First, pears look incredible beautiful and their taste isn’t. Second, the appearance of a pear is basically an out of shape green apple. A green apple gone bad. Hence the term – Pear-Shaped.
Maybe the metaphor isn’t doing anything for you but you get my meaning, right? Something goes bad, an expectation isn’t met, a reality that isn’t good sets in.
Could be as trivial as the water intake valve on your washer is messed up and you need to replace it. Or it could be a bit more serious than that. A job that is sucking the life out of you. A marriage that is dieing. A relationship that has soured. Poor health. Dealing with mean people.
…Don’t worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink; or think about your body, what you will wear. Isn’t life more than food and the body more than clothing?
Look at the birds of the sky…aren’t you worth more than they? Jesus
It’s hard to keep this perspective when things go south. Who are we kidding? At times it almost seems impossible to believe those words.
Yet…they are true. And those who HAVE preserved through the pear-shaped experiences will attest to this. They also have a couple of disciplines and practices that help them through their pear-shaped experience.
1. The real battle is spiritual. Whatever is going on in the physical, remember the real battle is spiritual over more than just temporal things. I can put on the armor of God when things go bad and it always helps. (Ephesians 6:10-18)
2. Eat something. Not physically, spiritually. Get back in the Word, get back in prayer. Read a biography or other good back that is going to put fuel back inside your soul. My staple – My Utmost for His Highest.
3. Stay In The Car Don’t quit. God uses all of these experiences for our good. Doesn’t mean he caused it or is responsible for it – although he MAY be. It does mean that God is using this experience to shape something in or out of you. He can shape you if you leave or quit. Stay in there.
4. Get some teammates. Ask for help and prayer. A life group is HUGE in this area. You will see the different when a group of people start praying and encouraging you.
5. Lift your eyes up.
I lift my eyes towards the mountains. Where will my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, the Maker of Heaven and Earth. Psalm 121:1-2
Perspective is everything. Being able to look up and be reminded – God is still God. He still loves people and is pursuing them. He’s still working through me and on me.
Big breath…yes, He is.
Then maybe those pear-shape experiences won’t be so…well…pear-shaped.