A Time to Cry Out (Part 2): Weariness and God’s Strength

sherjc.com_dusk_ocean_ship_cirThis is the second post in a 2-part series. Read part 1: The Fight Against Apathy and Weariness

“Concerning this I implored the Lord three times that it might leave me. And He has said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness.’ Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses so that the power of Christ may dwell in me. Therefore I am well content with weaknesses, with insults, with distresses, with persecutions, with difficulties, for Christ’s sake; for when I am weak, then I am strong.” –Paul (2 Corinthians 12:8-10)

“I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.” –Paul (Philippians 4:13)

Did you know that it’s okay to be weary?

Really.

Although it hurts our pride (especially for us self-sufficient people!), we really don’t need to have it all together or have all the answers. We simply don’t have resources or power like that in our own strength and wisdom, but God certainly does.

When we’re confronted with the bigness of the darkness, trials, suffering, and pain in this world, it’s only natural to get overwhelmed. We really are not quite as “big” as we like to think, and to admit the reality of our proportion, our size in comparison to all that is wrong in this world, in our communities, in ourselves that discourages and overwhelms can be downright frightening. Continue reading

A Time to Cry Out (Part 1): The Fight Against Apathy and Weariness

sherjc.com_dry_trees_cir

This is the first post in a 2-part series. Read part 2: Weariness and God’s Strength.

It all started with an unsuspecting jaunt over to check some messages on social media for a few minutes on a low-key Sunday afternoon. Just a cruise through my news feed, I thought, to reply to a message I knew was waiting. But what then followed was curiosity about the current goings on of my “friends” (you know how it goes… 😉 ) and reading mostly upbeat posts, cheery statuses, insightful blog posts, and beautiful images of life from various sunny weekend spots.

And in the midst of this slice of life from my news feed, I was confronted by a jarring photograph of a woman’s bloodied face and the far away, desperate look in her eyes after airstrikes near her home.

It was arresting.

Haunting.

Unreal, but sadly, very real…

It captured my attention, and I couldn’t continue scrolling down the news feed without stopping and wanting to know more.

Continue reading

Through the Pain

treeLast December, I was at physical therapy for another appointment for my shoulder and knee. Oh the joys of arm bike, band work, weights, and ice and “stim” treatment!  I hadn’t been in for a while because of a few weeks of the flu and then stomach flu (yuck), so there was plenty of work to do.

As my PT was working on my shoulder, we were talking about how things were going and catching up on life. I asked her about her Thanksgiving, and she told me that her young daughter was sick over the entire holiday with a stomach bug.  As she described what her little girl went through, my heart filled with compassion, particularly since just a week earlier, I had had experienced the same, awful stomach flu. Continue reading

The Lord is Near… (or 6 Days Until Christmas)

In lieu of Christmas cards this year, I write. Reflecting on 2009, there’s a major theme I see in everything that’s happened this year: God is near. He’s in the midst of our most joyous seasons, but even more profound to me now, He walks with us in the midst of our deepest valleys. He is the compassionate God. Compassion. Compati… He bears our burdens. He suffers alongside. He feels our pain… our intense, difficult, personal pain. Continue reading