I hope everyone had a wonderful Easter, remembering in thankfulness, the sacrifice of love that Jesus gave to and for us.
As promised, my friend Pam Thorson, has graciously written a wonderful post for us. As I read her words, my heart was deeply moved, and I pray yours is too.
(Photo courtesy Grace Thorson/copyright2013)
Who knows how it grew out of the rock,
encased on all sides,
Gnarled branches bore stunted needles,
solemn witness to the battles it had borne.
Its tortured trunk twisted toward heaven,
bowed against the merciless wind tearing at its roots.
Always, it fought to right itself,
to reach again toward the light;
silent witness to the power of life;
a thing of beauty because of its scars.
-Pam Thorson, “The Beautiful Broken”
Excerpted from Out from the Shadows
It is Never for Nothing
Have you ever done something you regretted? Have you been scarred emotionally or physically by events beyond your control? Did you feel helpless and alone?
You would hardly be human if you haven’t experienced brokenness. We all live with regret. Most of us look back upon our lives at some point and struggle to understand where God was when we were hurting.
I had wonderful parents as a child. But in school I experienced much heartache at the hands of bullies. I was small and timid. We moved a lot, and I always felt so lost and alone—the outsider on every school yard.
That feeling followed me into adulthood. Then God intervened. I can still remember the moment, as a young wife and mom, that I comprehended the message of the gospel. The relief and joy of receiving God’s forgiveness for my sins was indescribable. Receiving a new identity and a new life was incredible. I was sure I would never feel lost again.
But I soon discovered that being a Christian didn’t exempt me from sorrow. I learned that walking with God is often a hard journey, and though He makes our paths straight, they’re still rocky. I realized that disappointment is often the companion to miracles.
Over the years, I learned to praise God for His deliverance through each trial. But I wondered how to live with the battle scars.
It never occurred to me to embrace them.
Now, years later, I’m beginning to understand. Nothing that has happened to me is without purpose. Everything I’ve experienced, good or bad, before and after the moment of my salvation, has made me who I am today.
In the same way that a tree is shaped by the elements as it grows toward the light, I am being shaped by the elements of adversity and blessing. All things work for my good, we are told in Romans 8:28. That means I can trust God to turn everything I experience into growth for His glory as I reach upward toward Him.
In the past, I was ashamed of the scars I bore from the twists and turns in my life. But I see now that God looks upon my heart and knows I’m shaping up just fine. I am the Creator’s masterpiece: the beautiful broken.
In her new book, Out from the Shadows, Pam shares how God uses our life circumstances to form the qualities He wants to develop in us. “Never for Nothing” and thirty other devotions lift back the veil on the struggles and joys of caring for others to reveal God’s great love for us. Pick up a copy ($8.96 paperback; $2.99 kindle) today at http://www.amazon.com/Out-Shadows-Pamela-Thorson
Pam Thorson is a licensed practical nurse, author, speaker, and full-time caregiver. She pioneered in the homeschooling movement from 1982-2006 and authored her first book, Song in the Night, in 2008. Her newest book, Out from the Shadows: 31 Devotions for the Weary Caregiver (Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas), released March 28. Pam resides in the Pacific Northwest with her family. Contact her at www.pamthorson.com.
What a wonderful God we serve! Make sure to check out Pam’s wonderful book, Out from the Shadows, and visit her website. She will also have another guest post for us later this week, so be sure to check back here as well.
May God cover you all with many blessings this week. – Amber
“Let no foul or polluting language, nor evil word nor unwholesome or worthless talk [ever] come out of your mouth, but only such [speech] as is good and beneficial to the spiritual progress of others, as is fitting to the need and the occasion, that it may be a blessing and give grace (God’s favor) to those who hear it.” (Ephesians 4:29 AMP)
Last night, an elderly woman that I admire and adore came over to me at church and prayed with me. Afterward, she hugged me and told me that I was special and that she really appreciated me and my friendship. I can’t even describe how wonderful hearing that made me feel inside! Her words caught me off guard and I didn’t know what to say, except a heart felt “thank you”. This woman’s words, though simply spoken, did so much more than just make me feel good. Her gesture also showed me just what it means to reach out to others and love them. She showed me a living example of how just a few words can say so much and do so much good in lifting up a person’s spirit. She and her daughter-in-law have been wonderful mentors to me, even if they don’t know it, and have given me great examples of what it means to be a virtuous woman. Not only in their words, but in their lifestyle as well. I greatly respect and admire both of these women, and feel very privileged and blessed to know them. And I pray that in the days to come, I will learn to follow in their footsteps with the examples they have given in living out a godly life, being helpful and edifying to others as Jesus taught.
I am not what would be considered a qualified speaker by most standards, although I can talk with the best of them. But the impact my friend’s words had in my heart last night is the kind of impact I want to share with others. I think this would fall into the category of “random acts of kindness”, and that is something the world definitely needs more of.
So, I pray today that each person that reads this will receive a blessing of kind, loving and sincere words from someone, whether it is from a friend or stranger, and that it will stir up and inspire their heart to do the same with someone else. Let our hearts be led by The Holy Spirit, and our lips always ready with His truth and love. Amen and God bless!
Good morning fellow bloggers! Well Friday is finally here, and we’re getting ready to spend another busy weekend. With Christmas just around the corner, we are putting on our final touches to the gift wrapping, baking and some much needed errands. (Being sick for the past week has put me dreadfully behind, but I’m on the mend, praise God, and trying to catch up now.)
In all honesty, I haven’t been able to keep up with the posts on here this past week, but I do have a few more blogs to add to the #TBSU (The Blog Scratchers Union) list. I do hope you will check them out, and share them with your friends if you like! And don’t forget to “like” and “follow”. It helps others to find the sites too. Thanks for helping to spread the word, and I wish you all happy blogging! 🙂
Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas and a wonderfully blessed New Year!!!
Blogs to follow: #TBSU