My sufferings right now, are very small. But sometimes it can be the small things that we suffer that can trigger bigger trials. Because I make them big.
I'm wanting something usually that I cannot have. I cry out for it and my nature craves it. I'm deprived of some need, and I fight over it to get it. This is the picture of my small trial.
Now, my husband is a wonderful man given to me by the Lord. A dearer husband given, I couldn't find. I would be hard pressed to do so and am sure I never would.
He has always been what would seem to me to be very good to me, the best husband given to me by my Lord. I know this to be true.
But we were having some difficulties this year and I felt them enough to cry out to God in my frustration.
The answer was clear. I clearly heard the Lord speak to me, to give kindness to my husband. That was the answer to my crying out.
You'd think that would be all that was needed. You'd think I'd do back flips to be kind to him and to obey the Lord in His instruction He spoken out loud to me. The Lord God Almighty, Jesus my Lord, who loves me enough to touch earth to speak to me about a trial, twice.
Yet, I found it hard to give kindness. I couldn't seem to find the opportunity long enough to be in a good attitude of heart long enough to give kindness. I was really cranky over situations on-going, a lot of the time.
Finally, though, after about a year and coming to a place of saying, if this doesn't change, I'm leaving! (Daydreaming of some small room in which to hide my self- battered, emotionally battered self).
My remembrance came back to me clearly. How Sweet the Lord!
Was not my direction to give kindness during this trial?
So, after a day of trying, I made my way back by grace to stable ground and began to try to find ways to give kindness. And in my emotionally self inflicted beatupness, it was much easier to do so.
I thank the Lord!
Though this is truly a small trial, not one in which someone is really harming you at all, just a time of having my need for attentions withdrawn, it was a trial. Given to share just a tiny bit the sufferings, though very small, of Jesus.
I certainly didn't do the back flips I would have hoped to see me do or pridefully thought I could do, in obeying.
Quite the opposite, it took me forever and getting all self beat up in the process from going in circles of frustration.
And it took me a long time to come to the end of the matter in frustration and then to willingly participate in the answer to it.
I've spent the better part of a year flunking at this small trial.
My soul thirsted for kindness like a dieter that couldn't get away from the desire for food.
I rebelled at the thought of giving it when it wasn't perhaps being given the way I thought it should be.
And forgot my instruction through out the year that Jesus gave to me clearly, to give kindness to my husband.
Well, there's a joy today.
Even if I have been a failure in this and I didn't embrace it well, at all, there is a real joy today as I look at it in fresh eyes given from my Lord, to put me in remembrance how important it is to be willing to go through small trials or large, small sufferings or whatever He takes us through, it is for a reason. And giving is better than receiving.
It is to know Him more, and for others to know Him more.
It is through my small or large, sufferings and trials that I can truly come to know His life more, and become useful to receive from Him, something to give to others lives that are thirsting for Him.
Even in the small trials the outcome can be very large, because the outcome is more of Him. For us to know Him more, be partakers of His life, and for others to be drawn to know Him.
I pray my feet stay on steady ground. That I will not so easily forget that it is in giving that I am blessed.
The reality grip took hold today when I remembered something the Lord showed me.
I drove by a crafters Saturday market about a year or so ago.
It looked like it had been set up without thought to the people at all. It seemed like they were given spaces on hot concrete while cool grassy places were being used to put cars for someone else to park at.
My heart melted when I went by. I longed to give them cool grassy places and to show them kindness. I could see that whoever was running it had shown little kindness or care, to my perception, to the people.
I began to long to have a Saturday market to just be with the people to show them kindness. It was the Lord giving those hopes and desires to me.
I could see that in sharing that kindness, it would draw all men to Him. I wanted so much to share Him with others, that they might know kindness and be drawn to Him.
I could see by Jesus, that the kindness I longed to share, His kindness, giving that kindness to the people in the way I treated them and showed love to them, His kindness to people, it would draw all men to Him.
And now I found myself at the end of a trial that I just flunked horribly at.
I wanted to be treated well, and forgot to show kindness without anything in return, or more, perhaps just didn't know that that is what it is all about, even though it was clearly spoken to me.
I'm glad now though, as I see this and remember it, only by Jesus, that I gain new strength and determination to go through my trials, large or very small with knowing that a work is being done.
To gain, is to know His life, to share.
And in sharing His life with others, it will by that very life of His, which will draw all men to Him.
Our trials are important. Important to us, those with us, and those around us. I am so thankful for a caring and loving Heavenly Creator, Savior and Lord, Who so patiently waits for the crop.
Who works with us patiently. To help us to walk and to produce in us something good of Himself.
Do Not Love the World
Do not love the world or anything in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For everything in the world-- the cravings of sinful man, the lust of his eyes and the boasting of what he has and does--comes not from the Father but from the world. The world and its desires pass away, but the man who does the will of God lives forever.
This is an interesting piece. I found it easy to relate to, and it also made me think about areas where I might be expecting the same results without putting forth my own efforts (of dying to self/flesh and relying on Jesus).
There are a few areas that I had to read several times before I got the meaning, so I will offer one suggestion on wording.
I was confused by "And in sharing, it will by the life that He is, draw all men to Him." Suggested wording for more clarity - "Who He IS (emphasize "is" somehow)is revealed through sharing and will draw men to Him."
My suggestion may or may not work for this, but that is the jist of it. I do like your wording, but it took a couple times reading it to digest it.
Thanks for sharing this - it was a blessing to me this morning :)