As a saint of God, my attitude toward sorrow and difficulty should not be to ask that they be prevented, but to ask that God protect me so that I may remain what He created me to be, in spite of all my fires of sorrow. Our Lord received Himself, accepting His position and realizing His purpose, in the midst of the fire of sorrow. He was saved not from the hour, but out of the hour.
We say that there ought to be no sorrow, but there is sorrow, and we have to accept and receive ourselves in its fires. If we try to evade sorrow, refusing to deal with it, we are foolish. Sorrow is one of the biggest facts in life, and there is no use in saying it should not be. Sin, sorrow, and suffering are, and it is not for us to say that God has made a mistake in allowing them.
Sorrow removes a great deal of a person’s shallowness, but it does not always make that person better. Suffering either gives me to myself or it destroys me. You cannot find or receive yourself through success, because you lose your head over pride. And you cannot receive yourself through the monotony of your daily life, because you give in to complaining. The only way to find yourself is in the fires of sorrow. Why it should be this way is immaterial. The fact is that it is true in the Scriptures and in human experience. You can always recognize who has been through the fires of sorrow and received himself, and you know that you can go to him in your moment of trouble and find that he has plenty of time for you. But if a person has not been through the fires of sorrow, he is apt to be contemptuous, having no respect or time for you, only turning you away. If you will receive yourself in the fires of sorrow, God will make you nourishment for other people.--
This was a devotional I read while we were camping last weekend. It was so convicting to me. We've been struggling with Austin lately. It was affecting me more than it should have. I was begining to be grumpy, and just plain negative. I was not liking the affect it was having on me. One day Austin started crying because he felt like noone liked him and that he drove everyone crazy. Well, he does, but that is besides the point. He is such a likable kid, everyone likes Austin. Okay, when he was upset, I had absolutely no compassion for him. That is horrible, but I was being selfish--again--and was just feeling worn out from him that day. I finally talked to him and he went to bed. Well, of course it is our human sinful nature to feel sorry for ourselves at times like this. Why me? Well, I was there. Then I read this devotional. It told me all the things I knew already, but was failing to life by at the time. I'm so thankful that the Holy Spirit continues to teach me things each day, even though sometimes it is the same thing over and over, he never gives up. It is my prayer that I will bring glory to God in all things, even through, or should I say especially through the sorrows of this life.
Heavenly Father, please forgive me for my selfish attitudes. Help me to remain what you created me to be in spite of all lifes sorrows and sufferings. It is my desire to glorify you in all I do. Thank you for your gentle guiding when I am falling into to my selfish ways. You alone are holy and worthy of my praise. Amen.