Does the moth really want the flame?
How I desire that which is not good for me, that which is not beneficial to my good life! This is my earthly, not eternal, weakness.
“Until the return of Christ, we will always have the battle with the flesh, but we must not let it consume our lives… [we must instead] turn to the unlimited power source of the Holy Spirit.”
Continue reading “…Which Clings So Closely…”
I have wounds, major and minor, which have healed to beautiful scars. They are a road map to my life.
Every slice, from the shallowest paper cut to the deep lines left by surgery, is a stroke of the Maker’s chisel; the Healer’s paintbrush. Of course, they hurt to different degrees when received.
But all leave the same white lines.
Consider my experience:
- In the past twenty or so years, we’ve had six kitties with sharp needles for claws. We also added a dog. So here’s a typical scenario: cat startles dog, dog scares cat, cat digs into whatever he’s on for maximum escape velocity. Usually it’s me.
- Mishaps with knives and other sharp things, accidental or not: from reflexively trying to catch a dropped kitchen slicer to intentional slashes (I once used my finger to test a razor blade I’d found.)
- Invasive incisions from the inch-long fistula site (a joining of a vein and artery to improve blood flow for dialysis) to a foot-and-a-half cracked-open chest.
I like to think I bore the big ones well. I pray they’ll remain once-in-a-lifetime events. The little nicks seem an almost daily occurrence, and they can cause the most noticeable, lasting pain.
(I think it’s more the annoyance than anything else. The location of a pinprick can be most inconvenient.)
Naturally, I find physical injuries analogous to emotional offenses.
And when I’m feeling particularly sore over some lingering snub, I look at my marks and am reminded:
- that I am healed (healable?), from even the most severe damage. (James 5:15)
- life will have troubles of all sizes (John 16:33)
- God’s grace will find us whenever we need it (Hebrews 4:16)
- to treat others as I would have them treat me (Luke 6:31)
He comforts us in all our trouble so that we can comfort others. When others are troubled, we will be able to give them the same comfort God has given us.
2 Corinthians 1:4
Recently, I heard a great example describing a point of view which summarizes an entire outlook on life. The topic in which the analogy was used was a lesson on finding and keeping an attitude of gratitude.
Close your eyes and imagine a bush in full flower. Roses or something extremely pretty and sweetly fragrant. Look closely at the stems and see the thorns, sharp and painful.
How do you think of that plant? Is it a flowering bush with thorns, or a thorn bush with beautiful flowers? Do you see the bad in a good situation or the beauty in a broken world? Do the thorns drag your spirit down to anger and disappointment or do the blooming colors and pleasing smells uplift your spirit and give you hope?
Now, can you consciously change your attitude about it?