Wednesday, February 18, 2009

How to Make It

I received this little poem in my e-mail this morning.

"There comes a point in your life when you realize:
Who matters,
Who never did,
Who won't anymore...
And who always will..
So, don't worry about people from your past ,
there's a reason why they didn't make it to your future.."

Names quickly appear across the pages of my mind as I read this. Yes, there are reasons that people from our past do not make it into our future. We make decisions about people concerning whether we remember or forget them based on whether our relationship with them was/is "good," or "bad."

Have you ever heard someone say, "I will forgive, but not forget?" I believe that forgive means, as though it didn't happen, or in other words, FORGET IT, let it BE GONE.  I do forgive individuals, but as hard as I try there are times when that individual, that I thought I left behind, that caused me pain,  just pops back up. How about you? Then, once again, I must deal with my feelings. 

You know, everytime, yes, everytime I deal with this, the Holy Spirit reminds me of Joseph when he was dealing with his brothers after they had hurt him so deeply.   Listen to this passage from Genesis 50:19-21, when Joseph told his brothers, "Don't be afraid. Am I in the place of God? You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is not being done, the saving of many lives... and he spoke kindly to them."

I believe that attitude of Joseph is what Christ had in mind when he said for us to "consider it pure joy...when we face trials...."So I am saying I am to fake the hurt during my trials and appear "happy as a Lark," even though I am crushed on the inside? Definitely not.  Trials are painful, at least mine are, but I am saying that it is possible to have a positive attitude (joy) because we know that trials produce in us perseverance, patience, and steadfastness (James 1: 2-15). 

As believers in God we should  try to look at our struggles as an opportunity for growth. As we pray, God will give us strength and wisdom to get through the difficult times and as in the passage today, to not just get past those difficult persons, but be able to look them in the eye and "speak kindly to them." Instead of looking at that individual and saying, "You caused me hurt in my life," look to God and say, "Thank you for using the hurt to accomplish your will in my life." 

James 1: 12 says, "Blessed is the man who perseveres under trial, because when he has stood the test, he will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him." 

How do you see those that hurt you or someone you love. How do you deal with hurt...tough times? Did you become better or bitter? Will you receive the crown?