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Showing posts with the label Trials

And in the Wind

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There is change in the air as a storm approaches. The wind picks up, clouds gather, there may be a distant clap of thunder. As lightning flashes around us, we race for shelter.

Monastery grounds and walls are as subject to storms as those of any other building. They get slapped with rain, pelted with sleet.  Inhabitants of the cloister might find themselves standing at a window looking out, maybe with a touch of concern. What are those chunks of hail doing to the roof? Are the windows secure against the wind?

The monastery of my life is vulnerable, too. I face storms, at times, of great magnitude. Sickness, sudden disaster, an unnerving news report. It helps me then to remember that I’m in the strongest cloister possible – the cloister of God’s loving embrace.  Everything that touches me must first come through His hands, through His “permissive will.” I can do as St. Francis de Sales advised, and say amid my contradictions: “this is the very road to heaven..  I see the door, and I am …

If the Season Finds You Hurting

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It's a bad time of year to be hurting.  Not that there is a good time for pain, of course, but the weeks around Christmas and New Year's can be particularly poignant for some.

I suspect many of us have had such seasons. Times when we can't be with loved ones, or a relative or close friend has died, or we've suffered a miscarriage, or we're sick, or we've lost our job, or there is illness in the family.  Even the time of year can make us feel blue.  Here in the northern hemisphere, night falls early in these months of bleak midwinter. We may be struggling to adjust to the long, long, long dark.

For anyone reading this who is sad, in pain, or maybe just wishing the holidays would be over and gone - know that you're not alone. In fact, you are so 'not alone' that I'm going to ask a favor of everyone reading this..... (continue)

Behind the Name, Beautiful Thorns

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Years ago I went through a severe trial and very intense spiritual warfare. After that happened, I cried out to the Lord and told him, "I just want a normal, leisurely life"!  Well, he heard my prayer and he left me alone for the next 6 years. Needless to say, I was miserable! There were no spiritual consolations; I did not sense or hear from the Lord at all during that time. The worst part about it though was my passion towards him was gone! I had no desire to pray or serve him. I felt like Jesus could have appeared in all his glory right in front of me and I would not have been moved. It was a very scary place to be and even made me question my salvation.

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Roller Coasters, Puppies, and Learning to Fly!

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The past eleven days has been a real roller coaster ride! I am not a big fan of roller coasters, either at amusement parks or in real life! They make me nauseous and I'm not a fan of the thrill. Sometimes however the trials of life that feel like roller-coaster rides can help us grow the most in faith. Hopefully the story I am about to tell will produce growth in me. After all, the Lord can use anything (Romans 8:28)!

Our children have been begging us for a while for a puppy. My husband and I have been researching what would be a good breed for our family. We have tried big breed dogs and they usually knock the children over and can be pretty destructive so that did not work for our family.

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