The Pen

A sword to stab into the mire of thoughts
A point to seek their worth
A blade to test their balance
The sheen to illumine confusion

A swipe to wipe out obstinance
A slash to cut off the pain
A parry to ward off futile thoughts
The sheathing to wait and to trust.

To write thoughtfully, honestly, and forwardly (Christwardly)
about the changes and challenges you most resist
takes greater courage than samurai seppuku.

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Getting all discouraged about being discouraged

Genesis 50:20

Perhaps you know this verse by heart just from seeing the reference, or perhaps the image helped jog your memory, because it is one of those verses we use very often to illustrate the necessity and fruitfulness of faith in our God despite dismal circumstances, and is a reminder of the existence of purpose somehow behind seemingly meaningless suffering.

“As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good, to bring it about that many people should be kept alive, as they are today.”

Joseph’s words, “you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good” don’t often get quoted with the pointer that there was a time of probably 24 odd years between his being sold into slavery by his brothers and his saying these profound words. Time is a great teacher and counsellor, and I’m sure it took Joseph a while to ‘get it’. Hence, in regards to trusting in God for redeeming our messes, the lesson is this…

Don’t be discouraged about getting discouraged.

It will take time and then more time and then some for us to see some of the good God intends and ordains. I don’t think this means we have to repress hurt, and then smile and laugh for the sake of showing joy. Rather, it seems appropriate to me that God is pleased when we are faced with gut-wrenching, forehead-holding, tear-jerking situations, sob the sobs and still maintain that God Himself is sovereign and good. Being discouraged is not good, but God’s grace covers that just like it covers everything else, like the mistakes you make along the way. In any case it could take anywhere from a few days to twenty-four years to see how God meant it for good. I’m betting that discouragement will recur between now and then. His grace covers us even as we use what seems like our last reserves of energy to live zealously, proclaiming God’s perfect kingdom still to come.

[Note: Click the image above for a further interesting blog post on the Joseph situation that I read re: prayer. The rest of the blog is good too.]

 

Urgency and Patience

Here is a thought: not sure what the train was that inspired it, but it’s probably something to do with purpose/meaning, and I was also reading Exodus. Here goes.

Urgency and patience.

That is the difference between how you make choices and how you sit in expectation of results (perhaps from those choices).

Urgency to please God and ‘wait on him’ in obedience.

Patience in waiting for God’s plan to unravel and play out.