Over the weekend I read the chapter (Change Your Heart, Change Your LIfe by Dr. Gary Smalley). It entitled, "The High Value of Trials". What timing! Last Friday, my knees started hurting. I've been blessed to live a fairly pain-free life (unlike my husband who is constant pain.) But since Friday, I've been in great pain. Both of my knees hurt: when I walk, when I full extend, and when I bend them. Also, my fingers are going through varying degrees of pain. Sometimes I can't close them without pain. Last night, I had to take of my wedding ring (which left an impression). Just a few days ago, my ring was loose enough to spin. Today, nearly every joint---knees, ankles, wrists---are in great pain. I looked so bad John told me to come home from work. My doctor can't see me until Wednesday afternoon. (Although the original date was a week from Friday! Thankfully they got me in early!
Anyway, in this chapter, Gary talks about "treasure hunting" during trials. He talks about how the Bible promises rewards as we go through trials. He suggests that we start giving thanks for the pain as soon as the trial starts, and then look for the gold nugget in the trial.
Okay. Sounds a little crazy. But today, as I drove in pain, I started praying that God would reveal the work He wants to do in my life.
This week, the verses I'm hiding (some I already know!) are:
* And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to His purpose. (Romans 8:28)
* Be joyful always, pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus. (I Thessalonians 5:16-18)
* Consider it pure joy, my brothers when you face trials of many kids, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. (James 1:2-4)
* Not only so, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us. (Romans 3:3-5)
* But [the Lord] said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weakness, so that Christ's power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ's sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong. (2 Corinthians 12:9-10)