Words For Courageous Living

> I don't care who you are, or where you are..as a human being on this planet life could be better, huh? The bottom line is the word AFFLICTIONS. I put it in caps because I am persuaded that everyone has afflictions. Of course, they vary in degrees from 1 to 10!

But, what to do with AFFLICTIONS? That's the question. First of all, one must realize and KNOW down deep in their inner man that good will come from it - and further God has ALLOWED this affliction to come. Let me illustrate.

It has to do with a pomegranate tree. Even as I type these lines, I recall a color slide that I have of my son Bryan in the back yard eating this big red pomegranate. It is literally all over his face.

Back to the story. This man who was completely dejected by his afflictions was walking one day in one of the botanical gardens of Oxford. He noticed this really pretty pomegranate tree. It had a stem which was cut almost through! He asked - what has happened?

The gardener replied with an answer which explained the wounds of this man's troubled spirit. "This tree used to shoot so strongly that it bore nothing but leaves. I therefore had to cut it in this manner. Now, when it is almost cut through it has begun to bear plenty of fruit."

It is like my lawn which was cut yesterday. The lawns which we want to keep in the best condition and look good are the ones which are mow often. While the tall "proud" weeds of the field may say I have never experienced the blade of a lawn mower, they obviously do not have the appearance of my lawn.

Bottom line: Cut grass is more beatiful and - let's say - more "serviceable". I don't think that we as human beings have any more say than the grass does in the matter of cutting. My friend, afflictions are a matter of fact to we humans on this planet. Please accept it and with the grace and power of the Holy Spirit endure and see how God can use it. This is, indeed, a hard saying! But they said that about some of the words of Jesus also. Scripture speaks regarding God saving us out of afflictions; upholding people IN affliction; being a refuge for those afflicted; God remembering their afflictions and God considering them in afflictions But I quote Isa. 49:13,


Can you trust Him in that, my friend?


Lord, amid it all - the bad and the "worst" you are there for this friend. Please have mercy on them - sustain them IN the affliction and give them the faith to believe that as in the case of the pomegranate good will come from the bad.


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