Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Wrapping up James 1:16-18


Some of these weeks are going to be rough.

I know verse 16 (how could I not? It's like eight words long!)
I know verse 17 - I have for years, which actually makes it all the more silly that I couldn't remember it earlier in the week.
But verse 18... nope. Some of these weeks are just going to be rough.

And it doesn't bother me so much. At least not this week (but sometimes the struggle does bother me.) But life happened. And isn't that part of all of this anyway?

Do not be deceived, my dear brothers and sisters...
It would be foolish to believe that this would be without flaw. 

Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of heavenly lights...
EVERY good gift. And EVERY perfect gift. And EVERY single last gift that we mistake in our finite minds as being less than good and perfect, there is something good and perfect to behold in those gifts too - something that has come down from the Father of heavenly lights. Like the rest found only in sickness. Like the quiet found in a windy, sleepless night. Like the togetherness of a couple sitting on the couch browsing the internet for new tires - togetherness that their busyness may have kept them from otherwise.

He does not change like shifting shadows...
This type of perfect goodness is always around us. We just have to open our eyes to see it, to really take it in for what it is. At first glance the gifts are hard to see. We see the circumstances and we see the negatives. Look harder though -- or better yet, get down on your knees and CLOSE YOUR EYES. Take in that breath and ask Him to reveal that perfect good gift.

This isn't prosperity gospel.
Life gets tough. Paths are slick and darkness creeps in. It can be hard to find that stable footing. It doesn't mean it's not there. You just have to LOOK HARDER. SEEK with MORE than what you may think you have within you. Because it's not you within you, it's the Father of heavenly lights, unchanging, ever illuminating.

He chose to give us birth through the word of truth, that we might be a kind of first fruits of all he created...
Open your eyes. It's like being born again, seeing this truth, seeing this fruit of creation right before you, right beside you, right in YOU. There's a newness and a beauty that you couldn't see before.

There's a perfectly good gift in that trial. Open your eyes.



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