February 12, 2014.
I have a friend right now who is going through something I can’t even imagine living through. Her brother is in the hospital hanging on to life by just a thin chord. She is one of the most genuine girl I know about her faith, and it is so hard to see her go though this. We all ask your prayers in this time of trouble.
Last night was a time of family and fellowship at the CSC, and it warmed my heart to see the love that was evident throughout. I am now convinced that this what how the church is supposed to work and interact. We are truly a family. And that means when one of our own gets the news that my friend received last night, we are all there to drop everything we are doing in order to be with her and help her in any way we can, those most of us felt completely helpless and heartbroken for her. Regardless, the response I saw last night was no less than beautiful. God’s glory– all for his glory. We are family.
I have a bit of a difficult lesson today, but I think it is all the more relevant.
“Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing… Blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial, for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised to those who love him.”
(James 1:2-4, 12)
What would life be without struggles. Who would we be if we never went through hard times? I believe we would be a very shallow people indeed. James knew the power of hard times, that they can work for the ultimate glory of God or towards the detriment of ones faith. It is up to us to decide how we respond to them. And if we respond with a tightening of our faith, The Lord will indeed draw very near to us, and we will be proven, refined with fire. We will emerge stronger and more pure. Holy.
“A friend loves at all times,and a brother is born for adversity.”
If anything can be said to be good about trials, it is that they bring us as a family of God closer to one another. We hurt and are broken for one another. This too is beautiful. Wonderful. My heart aches for those outside the body, as they may have few to turn to in their times of need. Yet another reason the gospel is to be spread.
“Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep. Live in harmony with one another. Do not be haughty, but associate with the lowly. Never be wise in your own sight. Repay no one evil for evil, but give thought to do what is honorable in the sight of all. If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all. Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave it to the wrath of God, for it is written, “Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord.” To the contrary, “if your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink; for by so doing you will heap burning coals on his head.” Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.”
Times get hard. This is life. Let us pray that when we go through these times, we lean upon our God and our fellow brothers and sisters in Christ.
Suggested Daily Reading: Galatians 6, I Thessalonians 4, James 1, 2.
May The Lord grant us all peace.