Thursday, April 18, 2013



  As much as Jesus wanted to run away from His crucifixion He knew God wouldn't let Him out of this hardship. How much He must have wanted to run over the hill and escape. But His God would be watching Him. He followed God and we were given a savior. God knew this must happen for the world to be saved, but He still wept for His son. God may allow things to happen for our own growth or for reasons we will never know in this life, but He still weeps with us.

Jesus asked "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?" (Matthew 27:45-46) God did have the opportunity to save Jesus from this. But He knew without this we would not know God's love for us. We cannot grasp this without Jesus' death on the cross. In my own suffering I have gained knowledge of Christ's sacrifice and His love for us. Would I know this in my heart, mind and soul without my own suffering?

Suffering can produce a deep understanding of life and all it's beauty and a true knowledge of the beauty of heaven. It produces a spirit alive with the knowledge of heaven and that heaven is not far away and those we love are right now, in this very moment, alive. We can't physically see heaven but it's a place alive right now and a place alive in our hearts, minds and souls.

We may never have the "whys" of our sufferings fully explained. We can learn, grow and understand Jesus more through them. When Jesus' physical suffering and crucifixion ended, what came afterwards? Resurrection, joy and healing. And yet Jesus bore and still bears the scars of the crucifixion. Yet, He is not a man of bitterness or hate. He is a man of love, compassion, and forgiveness. His scars do not define His heart nor lessen the meaning of His life. Instead they enhance the beauty, depth and meaning of his life.

How much in our own life do our scars paralyze us? Do we live in the suffering or crucifixion or the joy, love and healing? Do our scars lessen our importance? Suffering produces a real and deep joy, love and healing. Without suffering we never truly know God's power and presence.  We cannot then without suffering know the beauty of the resurrection and the love of God.

Jesus' crucifixion and suffering did not make sense to many human hearts. It still doesn't today. We don't understand our own problems and suffering. We are doubtful, angry, scared, anxious, bitter and upset. We question our faith and we question God.  These emotions are part of the human experience. Even Jesus wept at the death of Lazarus. (John 11:35) It is as Christians that in our faith we have hope in these times. We can see that there is beauty waiting for us on the other side. Beauty we may have missed out on without walking through our darker times.

When I see Christ's blood on the cross, I see His suffering in a new light. For only now have I gained a small, human understanding of His physical and emotional agony. The way He must have wanted God to take away His suffering and yet God did not and Jesus still trusted in Him.  Jesus did not run away from the difficulty He faced. I see His blood shed for me, and for all. In the blood I see my sin, inadequacy, and unworthiness. After I see His suffering, I see joy. The joy of knowing I live in the freedom of God's mercy. I live in the freedom of Christ's love and death on the cross even though I know I will not be spared suffering in this life.

I know heaven and my children awaiting me (lost to miscarriage) are very close by and alive. How much I have wanted to run away at times from my own pain and suffering. Running would never work. Not knowing that Christ died on the cross for me and did not run. He trusted. I cannot be a coward. I must trust. And look at the beauty we can now behold if we take it, and hold on to it. Beauty after suffering. Heaven awaiting us after this life and our trials and sufferings.

Lord, help me to see through my suffering and pain. Help me to see the healing and beauty you will bring me. Help me to keep my eyes fixed on eternity, on You, so that I do not lose my sight in the blindness of my pain. Help me to see like Jesus did.

"In my Father's house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you.  And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am.  You know the way to the place where I am going."
John 14:2-4
"He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away."  He who was seated on the throne said, "I am making everything new!" Then he said, "Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true."  He said to me: "It is done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. To him who is thirsty I will give to drink without cost from the spring of the water of life.  He who overcomes will inherit all this, and I will be his God and he will be my son.  But the cowardly, the unbelieving, the vile, the murderers, the sexually immoral, those who practice magic arts, the idolaters and all liars--their place will be in the fiery lake of burning sulfur. This is the second death."
Revelation 21:4-8

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