Shadow Of Victory

Monday, 16 February 2009

February 16th THORNS

This entry will let you know in a bit more detail where I am going on this journey. Today I am looking at these scriptures:
2 Corinthians ch. 12 ...verses 7-9 Paul writes

"To keep me from becoming conceited because of these surpassingly great revelations.... there was given to me a thorn in my flesh...a messenger of Satan to torment me. 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."

and...

Romans ch 7 verse 15 Paul writes

"I do not understand what I do , For what I want to do ...I do not, but what I hate...I do."

I often look at Paul and think about his "thorn" I guess like most of us we would pay a lot of money to actually know what the "thorn " was....we could all make suggestions but we will never know. My main thought when reading these verses is ..."huh! at least he only had ONE thorn." whereas I have a veritable rosebush of them.!!!"

I seem to have so many weaknesses and I have seasons when I am praying daily for God to remove them and at times I sense him saying.."my grace is sufficient"...Other times I just let them have their way and follow the pattern suggested in Romans..."I do ...what I hate doing" . One of the aims of this blog is to look at my THORNS and in doing so perhaps I will gain some fresh understanding and if you journey with me perhaps it will open up new insight for your THORNS, and together we can keep walking .

So....I will list my thorns and give a brief explanation and then open them up over the next few weeks....stay with me...feel free to drop in ....leave a comment ...email me....hang out.....or ignore.!!!

THORNS....

1) Childhood.....I didnt have the best of childhoods and I am sure I didnt have the worst...but mix together ...divorced parents...childrens homes...multiple schools and homes...abuse....abandonment and neglect and you get a fairly complicated and damaged adult.
2)Significance and Affirmation....we all yearn for these two very important ingredients in the formation of our lives.
3)Self Image...growing up with no real sense of identity left me with an extremely warped view of myself.
4)Friendships....I will spend some time on this THORN....building relationships when a damaged person is fraught with danger....for everyone.!!
5)Marriage....I am so very grateful for Chris ..he is Gods gift to me. I will be looking at how to live with the consequences of trauma within the blessing of marriage.
6)Trust....How does one learn to trust....other people...God ..ourselves??
7)Love...what is love....and how do we learn to love if we havent experienced it ?
8)Character...How is it possible for God to change our character??

I will no doubt find some sub plots going on in each area...so stay tuned.
I do want to say at the outset that I have known Gods Healing in many ways....I have learned about the gift of Forgiveness both for others and for myself..I know the scriptures that say "all things work together" and "I am a new creation" and I am further forward today than I was 10 years ago or 20 years ago for which I am truly grateful to God.
But it has to be said that I still live with some of the consequences of my past life shaping my inner being...and whilst I have seen much progress in becoming all that God wants me to be...I know that there are still areas within me where I live in the "Shadow of Victory" and for this season I am content to live there...knowing its a safe place for me to rest awhile.

4 comments:

Ruthie said...

7 out of 8 thorns I identify with....I'm loving walking this part of our journeys together. I'm gain hope, strength & encouragement just by being with you....thank you. As always, with love.

Anonymous said...

Were we separated at birth?! I wonder just how many of us are going through all these things but think that we are on our own. It feels a bit like I'm taking the easy option - letting you do all the hard leg work while I tag along! So much of what you say is so much of what I am or have gone through. I promise not to lean on you or be a burden, but I will probably look to you as someone who is going before me, so I get to walk in the footprints you leave behind. One day maybe I can do the same for someone else. Once again, thank you for being you, and being willing to be 'out there' for the rest of us.

Geri xx

Heather said...

Hi irene, thank you for your comment and encouragement - it's nice to have a space to organise my thoughts.

I think sometimes God gives us these thorns and weaknesses as a gift. We may not see why he's given them to us but ultimately he uses the thorns for good. The price of progress is pain. We can't progress our character without pain, we can't grow without pain, we've just got to learn to play hurt. If we look at Jesus, God gave his own son a crown of thorns as a gift for us, that we may ultimately have eternal freedom. Jesus could only progress by going through pain on the cross & being flogged (physical pain), criticised, rejected and mocked (emotional pain). If God had removed the thorns when Jesus asked for another way then we wouldn't have eternal life. Our whole faith is life through death and death through pain.

Sometimes I forget that we worship a real, living God who calls us to challenge and pain, and that we don't worship a false god of comfort.

Amidst the chaos and pain of thorns, we have to focus on God and why he's given us these thorns.
Thank you for sharing your thorns and your painful experiences with us Irene, your experiences are a gift to us as you pass on your wisdom, your advice and your thoughts. Your honesty is a real blessing, I relate to the majority of your thorns and your pain is helping us progress. :)

Love Heather xxx

Sandra in Bonnie Scotland said...

Hi my friend, as you know it's my birthday as you blog this day, and my best present is having our friendship still so much alive through all the decades we've been pals. Looking forward to catchng up with you again at Easter, lotsa loves, Sandra x