Tag Archives: struggle

Blessed Are You NOW

blessedIn a recent article in Living Lutheran magazine, author Tiffany C. Chaney makes an interesting observation about the Beatitudes found in Matthew 5:1-12. She writes,

“The text doesn’t say ‘Blessed are those who used to mourn or those who were poor in spirit or those who made peace before.’ The blessed are in the midst of serving God now; they are deep in the trenches. They are being persecuted and reviled and more, even now. And yet they are blessed” (“Living Saints,” Living Lutheran magazine, November 2017, p. 23).

The present-tense reality of being blessed in the midst of trials really struck home to me. I realize that in the midst of struggles, I often look toward to some future time when blessings will come my way. But the fact of the matter is that blessings come when I am feeling sad, when I can feeling a lack of spirit, when I feel far from peaceful.

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Maturing in Faith

Philippians 4:13Andrée Seu Peterson, in an article entitled “Learning Curves” in World magazine asks the question. “Why would you ever assume that you can’t do all things by Christ who strengthens you?” (World Magazine, March 4, 2017, p. 63). The Bible tells us we can, of course, but the devil and our human nature keep telling us we can’t.

We should never let stumbles or setbacks along the way in our Christian walk prevent us from moving forward, from carrying on, from dusting ourselves off and getting back to work. We must always look at any failure (large or small, real or perceived) as a learning experience. “How can I do that better the next time?” “What can I do to adjust my approach?” “What do I need to avoid?”

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Struck Down but Not Destroyed

birdMy mom gave me this little plaque during a stretch when I was unemployed for several years after college and unable to land a full-time job.

The image of a squat and forlorn little bird and the text of 2 Corinthians 4:8-9 seemed to capture my predicament at the time exactly.

But I have kept that plaque and referred to it often through the years when I encountered  other struggles and trying times that my 22-year-old self could never have imagined.

It reminds me that the Word of the Lord can meet us again and again with the same words in whatever plight we may be experiencing and their effect on us can be just as powerful and uplifting as it was before.

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