Mustard Seeds

Mustard Seeds

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Replacing Thorns with Beauty

"Joy is the echo of God’s life in us."
- Abbot Coumba Marmion
Look at this thistle. Deep purple and unique. It could be called beautiful in its own right. You would never anticipate the thorns hiding below the purple petals if you only looked at the top. At least you would not expect that the thorns would be as painful to the touch as they are (take my word for it, I got one in the leg).

This is how happiness is. Surface level. From the top I can look put together and fine. But without Joy it doesn't go any deeper then that. Underneath I feel prickly and scary. Inside I am barely holding it together. That is where Jesus comes in. He is perfection and because I am like a thistle I cannot be near Him with my prickles. Don't get me wrong, He accepts us for who we are, thorns and all. But he does not let us live with those barbs. He removes them. He works on us and refines us till we are beautiful all over and makes it so we can experience Joy in our lives no matter what thorns may be growing in us. Joy is not contingent on everything in our lives going well. It is instead a deeper rooted faith in God's plan and understanding of his love.

"Joy is not the absence of suffering.
It is the presence of God."Robert Schuller
"In thy presence is fullness of joy." - Psalms 16:11 
"Heaven, the treasury of everlasting Joy." - Shakespeare

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