GOOOOOD Morning friends!
Praise the Lord for another day! A new day….new mercies!
At 6:01 this morning me eyes opened, a small glimpse of light was coming in the bedroom windows through the closed curtains of yesterday. I closed them around noon when I went to bed with a migraine. I hesitated for a moment before deciding to get up…Donna and Allison are not starting their run until 6:20…I have time! Sending a quick text to say I would meet them along the road I slowly lifted myself out of bed and headed toward the bathroom. Groggy and grumpy…whew…they may not want to run with me. Sitting to put my shoes on I felt the need for my prayers to be NOW, not after the run. I bowed my head and began to talk to God. My phone buzzed…my friends would not be running. Perhaps God sent them a message of my grumpiness?! Well, why should I go? With a little determination I thought, I am already up…and I did eat ice cream last night (drat!). I took time for my bible reading, a confirming message from God that we are on the right track for our fall Faithfully Fit session (thank you God). Fixed my husbands tea and out the door I went. At the end of the drive I pondered just a moment before deciding to turn left. No need to go right if I am not meeting anyone. Beautiful, cool morning, perfect. My heart readied for running and more prayer. Time to lift others I know who are hurting. Making my way around the loop I knew that I was in the right place, there along the road, by myself, time with God, to praise, to intercede.
My turn was nearing. I was hearing a rush of water…what is that? The river? No, too far from it now. The storm drain? Hmmm…I think it may be rain. My house was within view, the “short-way” home was in sight. No. I turned to make my normal loop back. God had heard me say, I will just walk this one out today, no need to run. But He knew. And He sent the rain. Turning on my heel, picking up the pace, anticipating the sprinkles to turn to the full-blown rain I was hearing in the distance. Ahhh. Refreshing. New mercies every morning. God with me. Near me. I smiled, I laughed, I thought, “you knew I was going to walk this one out and then be disappointed”. With determination I ran. The cool rain a sweet reminder to me that God is always near. In His goodness it was light and cool, no thunder, no lightning, just right. As I rounded the corner it was harder, the rain dripping from my eye lids and my nose (thank goodness I picked the dark purple shirt instead of the light pink!). Three gifts in difficult. I already knew today’s Joy Dare topic. The verse I read in my closet last night…”for when I am weak then I am strong”. How true the Word of God. The truth penetrating my soul. Every run on the road has taught me that my strength is not mine on my own, it is from God; “for when I weak then I am strong”.
Are you able to even begin thinking of gifts that come from difficult? Do you even like the word difficult? As much as we may wish to avoid difficult, it is there. In all shapes and sizes. Difficult rears it’s head. Cancer, loss of life, job-loss, strife in marriage, rebelling children, rise in cost of living, loss of pay, loss of love, abuse, addictions, the list is long and DIFFICULT. ” I delight in my weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong” (2 Cor 12: 10). Paul delights in those things that I may cringe at…delights. Two verses previous he pleads with the Lord. Pleads. Take it away, take this thorn from me, take it Lord. What are you pleading for the Lord to take away? What difficulty do you want, desire, need to have removed? Trust that God knows. Trust that in your weakness He is strong. Delight in the hardship knowing that God will send the refreshing rain that you need to know that He is near. You are not alone in your struggles, you are not running alone. He is near.
Delight in your difficulties. Look for the gifts. Have a heart of gratitude because joy is the result.
I pray that today you are able to see a gift in difficult, perhaps even three.
Rejoice! Be glad in it,
Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness. Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.  That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong. 2 Cor 12: 8-10

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