Thursday, July 19, 2012

Learning the Hard Way

I've spent a few years learning things I didn't want to know. 

Sting. Shame. Shunning. 
Remember Who holds you, never leaves or forsakes you, never betrays you and NEVER forgets you - Savior, strength, surrender.

Hypocrisy, hurt, heartbreak.
Remember the One well acquainted with grief and sorrow. Remember His Spirit sent to comfort, guide, lead and teach us -
Healing, hope, help.

Failings, fear.
Remember the One who calls us His friend and is always faithful, even though we have not been faithful.
Friendship, forgiveness.

Grungy, garbage.
Sometimes we are a little messy. Sometimes we feel worthless.  If you see a hurting brother or sister, I pray you'll be kind. Don't treat each other like trash.  Goodness, grace - We will be hurt by each other. Let God perfect His work in you and in each other. Don't isolate yourselves. We are living stones which can smooth each other's rough edges. Don't cut each other down.

Jaded, jagged.
In Revelation, John sees Jesus standing in the middle of seven lamp stands which represent the seven churches. As imperfect as they are, He still chooses to standing among them. He sees it all. Trust Him to sort everything out in His perfect and righteous timing. Jesus, justice, joy.

Painful, prickly, petty.
Some days are plagued with trouble.  So what do we do? Press in. Worship Him. Prayer, praise - to the One who is our peace.

So yes, I learned some things I didn't want to learn the way I didn't want to learn them. Yet these things others have meant for harm, God has used for good in my life.  In the way which only He can, He's used them to grow me in ways I wasn't expecting. When you feel like you're sinking, call out to Jesus. He will hold you through the storm. He will bring you to safety. He'll meet you in your pain and sorrow. He will heal you. And you'll know what real love looks like. 

Monday, March 5, 2012

Growing Pains

Have you ever have one of those days where God sends someone to speak right into your heart and life, to let you know He hears you and He cares about *y o u ?* To remind you what matters to Him is your heart? To reassure you that He is in control, He has a purpose and a plan, and He gets you? And loves you still?

Spend time with Jesus, and let Him encourage your heart today. It seems so overly simplistic, but it isn't. It's simplistic in our heads, but not in our hearts. In our hearts, He overflows and pours into and out from our lives. In our hearts, we can't hold unforgiveness, because His love is bigger and has squeezed out the ugliness of bitterness. Let's be people who forgive and put all our pain, hurt and injustices on His alter and release it to Him. Let's grow up. Let's be people who trust Him. Completely. People who can love others because God loves us. Let's be people who know we will be hurt and choose to love anyway. Do you want to be a grown up Christian? Let Him heal your hurts. Ask Him the "big picture" questions. Wait to hear His answers. Understand life will sometimes be entirely too difficult, and that's okay. Our God is bigger. Let Him be bigger in our lives.