I really had looked forward to this past 4 day weekend! I was thinking how wonderful it was going to be to have 3 whole days with my husband to shop and put up the Christmas tree and celebrate being together!

I had it all planned out. Friday we were going shopping for a while, and I wanted to go downtown to see the lights and the storefronts all dressed up for Christmas. The weather has been nothing short of spectacular for the past two days and it would have been perfect.

Saturday, I was making a turkey with all the trimmings dinner. We were going to decorate the tree and the house for our first Christmas here. It was supposed to be just us two enjoying our time together.

Instead, he spent the weekend in the garage putting in a new fuel pump on the car, and I spent the days in the house alone. I was bitterly disappointed at this turn of events. God used it to reveal to me yet more ugly gunk that lurks in my heart. Man, I am so tired of that!

I don’t have any other explanation for why God allowed things to go the way they did other than to cause me to look at my sinful self and see how much I need the cross. I continue to see my need for His sacrifice as the Lord allows more and more adversity into my life, and more and more of my sinful heart is exposed.

These times of trial and testing press me hard and squeeze out all the sin that can normally be hid behind self-control and self-righteousness. The exchanged life I am to live as one “in Christ” is much harder than I could ever have imagined. I never thought it would be this way, and I bet you didn’t either!

Suffering and trial and sorrow and even misery mark our days here. All these never ending annoyances that cause us to long for our heavenly home. They remind me that all this is temporary and of no consequence in my future. I wish I would think that in the heat of the moment though…

My responses to them are not always good or glorifying to God. But even they are allowed to show me I must glory in the cross, in His sacrifice, in His life given to me and never in myself or my own perceived righteousness. Lord, may it never be that I become deceived into thinking that I am righteous of my own accord!

When I look upon the wondrous cross I see that my suffering is but for a moment (2 Cor.4:17) and that the glory that is being brought forth from this human wreckage is going to be for a lifetime.

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