Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, 1 Peter 1:3 NIV
It has been a while since I have posted. Particularly since I was formerly writing and posting five days a week. I am happy to say that we are past the crazy part of the move with looming deadlines. I have been going pretty much non stop all month. Today is the first morning that I have moved at a leisurely pace. We still have a house full of boxes to unpack but there are not trucks that need returned the next day or houses that need emptied and cleaned so we don't get charged another month of rent. Moving three houses has been a tremendous undertaking. My family has all pulled together on this effort and everyone has helped and worked together to accomplish this move.
If you are new to this blog, we have moved to a larger home that could also accommodate my mother and aunt. They are both needing more help and we decided that it made more sense to create one big happy family.
Our verse today is about how we have been given a new birth into a living hope. If you have ever given birth you know that there is a preparation stage that starts at conception and labor and delivery. Waddling around with a growing baby and hormones that are all over the map is not always the most comfortable time. Labor and delivery is down right painful. In the end or in the new beginning there is this wonderful new life, full of hope and potential. One quickly forgets the 9 months and the pain of labor and delivery. This move has been a bit like labor and delivery. I have known that God has given us a wonderful blessing, but this blessing has not felt all warm and fuzzy it has been hard work. I think we have this idea that God should just download good things into us - like in them movie the Matrix. Oh you need to fly a helicopter, lets just download the program. I am pretty convinced that most of the time God does not work like that. Most of the time healing is a process. Most of the time developing our skills, abilities and talents takes work.
Relationships with others and with God takes time and commitment. God gives us gifts but we must activate them in our lives.
With my massage school training, it seems I have some natural abilities. I am still having to work to refine and to understand how to use them. I can give you a violin as a gift and it is certainly a beautiful piece of craftsmanship but if you want to use that gift to make music one must embark on the journey of learning, practicing, developing ones ear. I think too often we want God to give us easy gifts that come with instant gratification. Most of the time His gifts and blessings come in odd packages and circumstances in our lives often push us to leave our comfort zones and to find new answers, and solutions as well as to turn to God for help in the process.
There are things in your life right now that are gifts. They may presently be difficulties that are pushing you to change. Skills that you are having to work to master. They may be people who are hard to love and a pain in the neck. Yet God is using those things to refine and develop His plans and purposes in your life. He is using those things to create deeper character and humility. His goal is not your comfort - it is to conform you to His image.