March 23, 2012

a little Bible study for ya

I'm in the middle of a 2 month Bible study right now at a local church, we're studying the book of Ruth. We are going through the Bible story of Ruth but also reading a book that a gal wrote on her study of Ruth. This morning I was doing my homework and a paragraph really struck me so I thought I'd share:

"I have to ask myself how I can possibly expect to know Jesus as he would want to be known if my life remains unscathed by trouble and grief. How can I hope to grasp anything of God's heart for this broken planet if I never weep because its brokenness touches me and breaks my heart? How can I reflect his image if I never share in his sufferings? And how will any of us ever learn to treasure his hesed and grace if we never experience phases where these blessings seem absent? I wish I could learn these lessons vicariously, but I'm afraid this isn't the norm for any of us. Without knowing suffering and confusion firsthand, we're stuck in the superficial and we cannot know, much less express, the heart of Christ for others."

{from the book "The Gospel of Ruth, Loving God Enough to Break the Rules by: Carolyn Custis James}

So often the question is asked "if God exists why did this (insert bad thing) happen?" etc. etc. I think this paragraph does a good job of answering this question. I've been a Christ follower for as long as I can remember, I've logged many hours in church pews and have sat through and led numerous Bible Studies. This isn't "new" information to me per se but it is a great reminder. We are created for so much more than we even realize, God uses our hurts for his purpose, they aren't in vain. My sufferings don't even compare to those of most of the world but I have them, and I too am left contemplating the point/reason. I may never know this side of heaven but I believe there is a point and that it will be used for good. So thankful for this hope. If someone out there reading this is needing some hope this morning, I hope you found it here. You aren't alone, even in the dark place you may find yourself. I hope you all have a lovely weekend and relish in the hope of this beautiful day that He created! xo