Sacred nonsense. Oh, for these precious, able-bodied days of grace to to whisk away my scallywags on adventures. Sacred nonsense. My favorite pastime. It is holy ground.
The older my boys get, the faster they move. Gone are the days of thoughtfully angled portraits and cultivated tableaus. Keeping up with the wild blur of boys, without a lens between us, keeps me in the moment -- one that I never take for granted.
Raising kids with chronic illness caused me frustration, until the Lord used it to bring me into a fuller knowledge of Him. The all-redeeming sufficiency of the cross is sovereign over every pain -- each one, an invitation to die to our flesh and bring about his resurrection in us.
Pain accomplishes his glory. It does not get in the way of it. Hardships are an invitation to understand the depths of God's redeeming grace. The humbling experience of pain and perceived loss is God's grace to mortify our flesh and its desires, so that we can gain the Kingdom.
Pain is a means by which God confronts the limits of our love, faith and "wisdom", so that we can gain his compassion and carry his love for sinners to a dying world in need of hope. Suffering humbled my prideful, judgemental presumptions about others, so that I could repent and be expunged in the forgiving blood of the Lamb.
Look to the example of Jesus, "who learned obedience by suffering." (Hebrews) I used to agonize, "I wouldn't wish this on my worst enemy." Yet, it was the very avenue that God used to flow the grace of Christ through my veins.
Our flesh is at enmity with God. To partake in his sufferings, with the joy set before us, is to be freed from the opposition of our flesh that resists the Spirit, so that we are called by him, "friend".
Suffering, betrayal, a broken heart, trauma, persecution or "impossible" circumstances reveals the limits of our faith, in order to cleanse and invite us into true faith in the fullness of Christ's finished work and his resurrection power, that is greater than any sin.
Brothers and sisters in Jesus, no matter what lying grave is pointing it's finger at you -- rejoice. The tomb is empty.