Last night my hunky husband and I bumped out of the ‘boro for a bit. Our destination was the new outdoor amphitheater in Nashville for the Tour De Compadres. John Mark McMillan and Matt Kearny set the stage for the headliners, NeedtoBreathe.

My soul was transported by the beloved band’s passion, creativity, but most importantly, their GRIT.

I have grown up with this group, seeing them in small shows in rustic venues to the swanky stages they shared with Taylor Swift. But the lyrics of their new song: Hard Love, resonate with the raw parts of my heart. Each note and word strung together to form the current theme song of my life as of late, a season that is far from ease.

No one thing, in particular, is impeding my life with sorrow, but the daily grind has done its job in making me that last little nub of cheese. Picture it: the last little cheese from the block that can’t quite grind down without nicking your knuckles.

My whole life feels like that right now.

With each swipe of the life-grinder, I’m rationed to the needed area. But, what happens when I run out of cheese? I mean really – I need to know! Because trust me, I am not done eating Italian.

With a phone in one hand and my taco bell dinner in the other, I heard my momma whisper words I knew she had once worn, “It’s building character, sweetie.”

In immaturity, I delicately declared that I did not want character! I had not asked for it! But my mom was right. And last night I heard her words echoed in the lyrics Bo & Bear penned, “But there’s a reason that the road is long, it takes some time to make your courage strong.”

Dang it.

God has seen fit for this season in my life. It’s needed. There is reason and purpose in this grinding and refining.

You see, Jacob had to wrestle with God to receive the blessing the Lord had for Him. Jacob had chosen to believe God, but fought in faith, working out his instinct to doubt. It was not easy to grab hold of the Lord’s truth. In contrast, Jacob rolled around on dirt and rock to fully grab hold of faith in God’s plan (Genesis 32:24).

Dirt? Rocks? No thanks. That’s my instinct, too!

But God is cultivating something here, people. He is developing a necessary character trait for what is to come. Do I know what that is yet? No! But I am choosing to trust a God who promises to equip me for the road ahead (Heb 13:21). The truth is Love bled out for us. Love stopped at nothing to win us. We are too, called to fight, press on, and endure.

So I’m going to quit whining. I’m going to quit resisting the resolve the Lord requires, and I’m getting gritty. It’s going to be freaking hard. But guys, anything worth having is challenging to gain at times.  It’s worth it. You coming?

“This part of you has gotta die to change; It’s not enough to just feel the flame, you’ve gotta burn your old self away” – Hard Love