Sunday, November 11, 2012

What Do You See?

There's not too much down time in my life right now...was there ever? My sisters will never let me forget a segment of one of our family videos when I was about five. I was kneading bread for my business that I had back then while reciting all the things on my very "grown up" to do list. There was the bread to be delivered to my costomers and then amongst a couple other things there was my scrapbook. My scrapbook?!

 Oh that the pressing things of life were still that simple:)

But I wanted to write a few things I have been thinking about due to some of what I've read as of late and also some of what life's experiences has been teaching me.


Trails and afflictions are the lot of ALL. Everybody has them. The way in which they show up is different, and perhaps, even the heat of the furnace has varying degrees for everyone.

Most of my trials originated with mySELF. Pride, selfishness, guilt...yes, I've had  my fair share...and it's brought with it, it's heartache. BUT. It makes grace that much more beautiful to me. Grace that can overcome a child's hardened heart. Grace that can transform, change, renew. That's a grace I love.

 I know mirriads of people, though, going through pain right now, and I'd never say that's so simply their fault. It's not. Suffering is a result of a sinful world. There's no other way to say it.

For some the fire embitters. For others it shines, it purifies, it sparkles.

I've written about my grandma before... but as I've grown I really have come to appreciate her for way more than just being my traditional hug me, love me, give me "wet ones" kind of grandma.

If anyone has gone through trials, she has.

When she was a young girl, her father came to America from England and was preparing to move his family over there. Grandma still talks about that day when she waved good-bye to him all those years ago. She never saw him again. He died of a stroke or brain tumor shortly after he left.

Being one of many children, she knew what poverty meant. Life was not easy for her widowed mother.

Grandma and Grandpa lived in England during WWII. Later they married in Africa and experienced war there, also. They knew danger. They knew hardship. Eventually, they had to escape the country to go back to England with their first child.

Grandma was a nurse. (Nope, I'm not just following in my daddy's shoes:) She worked long nights while raising her five children.

Later, she faced fierce stresses at home because of her love for Bible truth.

She fought cancer, had strokes, been run over by she's survived all of it...that's partly attributed to her stubbornness but more than that it's faith.

With 90 years (next month) of facing the battles of this life, you could expect discouragement, scars of hurt, something to be there. BUT there isn't.

There's joy.

Grandma will tell the stories.

And if you've ever had the privilege to hear them, you have heard her say: "The Lord always provided for us", "The Lord is good", "He always takes care of His children..." .

For Grandma, the difficult things in life were just an opportunity to prove the faithfulness of the God. She won't ever recount anything of life without praising Him. Why? Because He's the one who has carried her through.

When you review your past, if you're like anyone else that I've met, you've had trials. Maybe you are going through the most severe ones right now.

When I look back, what do I see? Do I see the beauty of grace in every trial? And when it's been 90 instead of 19 years, will I still see His faithfulness?