'It will produce thorns... for you.' Genesis 3:18 NIV
Yesterday, we thought about how Heaven’s answer to a thorny existence is a thorn–crowned Saviour. Now, there’s another part to that story. There is, shall we say, another set of thorns. After Jesus wore that crown and beat the consequences of sin, God decided to use thorns for His (and our) good. Being a Christian doesn’t mean that we get to entirely avoid all difficult stuff. It means we know Who we turn to when the difficult stuff happens.
Look at 2 Corinthians 12:7–10. Paul mentions ‘a thorn in the flesh’—something that really made life hard for him. Something that was trying to get in the way of his relationship with God. We all have those thorns. And God allows them for one reason: that we use them as inspiration to look to Him. We can’t beat thorns in our own strength. The only thing to do is to turn to God and ask Him for help. He may not remove them straight away, but He’ll certainly strengthen your relationship with Him while you’re dealing with them. And look back at yesterday’s reading—Jesus who bled from the thorn of death in our place. The ‘thorns’ of this life don’t last for eternity; they help prepare you for it. As long as you’re truly striving for the life of love that God asks for, He’ll make ‘all things work together for good.’ (Romans 8:28 NKJ) So, chat to some wiser/older Christians you really trust about your own ‘thorn in the flesh’. Get them to pray with you, asking for God’s strength in dealing with your personal thorns.
SoulFood: Job 8-10, Lk 1:39-56, Ps 57, Ecc 7:19-22
word4U2day (an adaptation of The Word for Today authored by Bob & Debby Gass) is published under licence by UCB Australia. 2014 UCB International Ltd