Sunday, September 11, 2011

Joy in Suffering

There has been much talk recently of trials and suffering.  As a world class complainer, I find the topic difficult to wrap my thoughts around.

Why can’t we just fix it?  Why does it have to be this way?  It must be my fault because this doesn’t happen to people who do it “right” or “better”.  I do not understand.

This morning I tried to explain 9/11 to my 8 year old son.  I couldn’t do it without tears.  The fear I felt that day came rushing back.  The memory of standing with co-workers watching the news in a large downtown area far away from home surrounded by strangers was overwhelming.  Trying to keep it together as I rode back with a gentlemen my father’s age across the deep south was difficult.  The man was born in Iran and fled decades ago because the same thing that happened that day in our country happened in his country to a much greater degree.  He understood what had happened.  He already knew what it all meant that day.

I am working on understanding and by working I mean praying.  I know seeing the joy in trials and rejoicing at my pain when the suffering is unbearable will not come from me.  It will not come from my heart.

It will be gift, a blessing.  To rejoice in God being glorified during tragedy, to embrace pain as a gift, as an opportunity is not in my nature.

10 years later many blessings can been seen.  The gifts shining against the backdrop of such pain makes them shine that much brighter.  Embracing my children that did not exist on that day and to count my blessings since then is overwhelming.DSC01470

I pray I can look faithfully to God during trials, large and small.  I pray I can thank Him for His gifts even when I do not understand them.

Today I am thankful for brothers building memories.

I am thankful for father and son making memories.  Memories made not on my timeline but His.DSC01381

DSC01429 (2)Today I am thankful for brave men who run toward the sound of battle. 

I am thankful for the pain of that day and many since.  Those wonderful days have molded and changed me for good.  Not goodness from my own heart but goodness given to me by the only One who has any to give.

I pray it is the same for you.

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