God Can Use Our Suffering

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♕ Today's Promise: "And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast." 1 Peter 5:10

~ Liora in Texas

☊ PRAISE from Liora

I wanted to thank the Lord today for the good and close relationship that I have with my earthly father. My father has always been a part of the church but like most of us, was just hearing the Word but not living it, until a few years ago when he went through some trials. He has always been there for me through everything, especially the many difficult years that I spent very ill. When I went through my illness, he says that that is when he grew closer to the Lord because he says he used to argue with God about what was happening to me. He would get angry and cry and ask Him questions and the Lord was always there holding Him up, showing him that He wanted my dad to trust Him.

My father has said that that is when he believes we grow closer to the Lord, in the suffering. I think he is right, because that is when I finally, truly came to know the Lord, when I had lost my marriage. Suffering causes our focus to turn inward, to face those parts of ourselves we might otherwise ignore. God can use our suffering then to develop us into better people and to grow with and in Him.

We have always been a very close family but I believe that with my separation and divorce, The Lord has let my father and I become even closer. My father tells me that he saw my pain and that he prayed for me because he did not want me to be a lost soul, because he knew that's where I was headed before I turned back to the Lord. So I know the Lord answered his prayers.

Now I have the time to help my dad fix up his home and take him to dr. appts, pick up groceries for him and take him everywhere he needs to go. We share our faith together, even though he is Catholic, I just agree with him when he tries to sway me. I don't believe its about denominations or anything like that, it's about our personal relationship with the Lord no matter where you are or where you go to church. Sometimes I have to stop myself when I feel that he is reading the Word but not living it in some aspects of his life but I'm then reminded that we are ALL a work in progress (even me and especially me) and that it is God who convicts, not me. My job is just to show love and compassion so that people see the Lord through me.

The Lord has allowed this time for me to spend with him, enjoying being his daughter and as he gets older and is in his seventies now, this is the time that I thank the Lord for because I love spending time just being with him. I don't ever want to take it for granted because I lost my mother in a car accident as an adolescent and that was very painful for me.

The Lord wants to restore and strengthen every relationship in our lives but sometimes we just have to wait. Sometimes the Lord has to bring these other people through trials and suffering also so that they will turn back to Him and we must not get in the way of what He is doing. Thank you Lord, that in the wait, you grow our faith and strengthen our relationship with You. My dad and I are still a work in progress as our relationship with the Lord grows everyday and we have faith that in our wait, our entire family will come to know Him also.

"All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to himself and gave us the ministry of reconciliation." 2 Corinthians 5:18

We must pray and trust the Lord that He will call back all of our family members to reconcile with Him.

"And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast." 1 Peter 5:10

The trials in our lives allow us to become ever so close to our Lord.

"When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze." Isaiah 43:2

God's mercies are new every day. He is with us every step of the way and even when things look bleak, God has promised joy will come in the morning.

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