Thursday, August 12, 2010

Challenges? God's gift.

What or who reminds you about God's grace and love.

I just read a quick story (in one of my textbooks for this fall) of the author's dog who was more than a nuisance.  He threatened to take the dog back to the pound, but recognized the fact that the dog needed his family and that his family needed the dog, if only to recognize the profound gift that God gives each of us ... forgiveness and grace ... even when we are annoying, break things and generally cause a great deal of disorder in His world.

So, I thought about this and was reminded of a family I knew in one of our churches with a daughter who was born with Down Syndrome.  It's a story I hear over and over again from parents with disabled children, how they learned more about love from that child than they had ever known before.  The family I knew didn't have a lot of money, could barely cover their own healthcare, yet dealt with everything their daughter needed with great joy because of what she meant to them.  If they were resentful because they had been presented with what society termed a 'less than perfect' child, no one never knew that about them.  There was no public complaining and they ensured that she was exposed to as much as she could handle.

What in your life challenges you beyond your sensibilities, yet is there to remind you of God's grace?

Or do you find it easier to eliminate challenging and difficult people and things from your life?

Life is so much smoother if we get rid of those distractions.  It is also easier for us to focus on ourselves and all of the problems that we have if we're not distracted by the needs of someone else. 

What if we were to consider that those distractions, challenges, and difficulties are actually gifts from God to help us recognize our humanity, our absolute need for Him and are there to remind us to be humble before Him. 

I don't like thinking that a problem is a gift.  But, that's ok.  I never liked it when Dad told me that he disciplined me because he loved me, either.  That's a story for another time. 

The author of the text book is about to teach me about Greek grammar ... I think I'll keep reading.  So far, he has me thinking!

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