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“Why is this blessing happening to Me?”
And for some on the other end of the spectrum, those who have always lived under pain, bearing up under sorrows of sadness and affliction, when joy comes, when God answers the prayers, when the river turns around and runs in the other direction, when blessing arrives, when the ship laden to overflowing docks in the harbor, when promises are delivered, rewards distributed, do some also cry out, “No, Lord, not me?” Often–yes.
Change of any sort is hard.
Those who live happy and successful lives find the change to hardship difficult, and those who live difficult lives of sorrow and trial find the change to joy and blessing hard to receive.
Challenge: I want to challenge and encourage you today–if you are one who has learned to live a life of strong faith, inner fortitude, and grace under trial–when the end of the road of travail arrives and the promised blessing comes, receive it with as much faith in God’s goodness as you learned when things were tough. Don’t feel you are not worthy. Don’t feel destined to disappointment. Not one of us is worthy. It’s God who is good. Don’t sabotage your own blessing because you are used to suffering. Receive the reward of your faithfulness with belief, trust in God’s trustworthiness, rejoice, and keep on giving thanks. Yes! This blessing is for you. Your day has come, and Christ is distributing his reward. Hallelujia!
Matthew 25:23 His master said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant. You have been faithful over a little; I will set you over much. Enter into the joy of your master.’
Harry Potter’s Sorting Hat illustrates how predestination (Calvinism) and free will (Arminianism) can peacefully coexist.
I see the sky
The hills are green
I sleep and rise again
For at each turn
I find a friend
Always the same
The same friend
Who knows my name
Who watches over me
Waiting, singing, for me
To greet me finally
To welcome me…
…my dear friend.
Difference between Men and Women:
Men shower their bodies; women shower their emotions.
I love to take a long, very warm (some might say hot) shower. It relaxes me, and I find the hot and steamy environment great for meditation on whatever my chief concern may happen to be. My daughter, while still a young woman in high school, regularly used to take little early morning naps curled up on the shower stall floor, water running of course, both to keep her warm and as a buffer for her day.
Men come in and their nearly cold shower is finished before one really notices it began. The only reason a man showers is to wash off the day’s dirt and, as some do, to soften the beard for a shave.
Two entirely different approaches.