“God has given us a purpose for our existence, a reason to go on, even though that existence includes tough times. Living through suffering, we become sanctified— in other words, set apart for the glory of God. We gain perspective. We grow deeper. We grow up!”—Charles R. Swindoll, Hope Again
9And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.
10Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ’s sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong.
“Whatever your particular calling, you are meant to grace the world with your dance, to follow the lead of Jesus wherever He leads you. He will lead you first into Himself; and then, with Him, He will lead you into the world that He loves and needs you to love. It is by invitation.”—Stasi Eldredge
A priest is sometimes described as one who represents God to the earth and the earth to God. But the reality is that that was the original job description of the human race. We were made in God’s image to continue his work of making the earth to flourish and then, by our flourishing, to give voice…
“When everything is going well, we often can’t hear God, because the music all around us is turned up too loud. But when the party stops—- in those moments of crashing pain, sorrow, and sudden silence—- we begin to hear His voice.”—Denise Jackson, The Road Home
“There is absolutely nothing wrong with setting aside a time when we focus on Jesus’ death and resurrection (Lent). However, these practices are things we should be doing every day of the year, not just for 40 days between Ash Wednesday and Easter. The key is to focus the time on repenting from our sins and consecrating ourselves to God, not on trying to earn God’s favor or increase His love for us.”—The Meaning of Lent
Contrary to what the world claims, beauty does not diminish with time; beauty deepens and increases. True beauty comes from a depth of soul that can only be attained through living many years well, in the presence of God.
Mother: Lord, I prayed for no rain on my daughter’s party. It looked really promising… the forecast a week before was sunny and temp on mid-50’s. I was convinced that You were going to answer my prayer. The bounce house was reserved and all the games were set to be outside. But what happened? You gave me 6 inches of snow the day before and a soggy and squishy backyard on the day of the party. I am so disappointed!
God: Hush, my child. Look around you. Look at your daughter. Doesn’t she look very happy to you? Isn’t that what you want? She even told you she really didn’t care that she didn’t have the bounce house, and the games weren’t outside. She’s content, very thankful, and very happy. Why aren’t you? I didn’t give you a dry and sunny day, but I gave you a wonderful daughter. Do you realize that?
God doesn’t always answer our prayers, but makes us realize that by saying “no”, He’s showing His deep and great love for us. His love is way beyond what we can see and can understand.