As we know, the greatest gift that can be bestowed upon humankind is love. It is the most delicate and priceless gift ever given. But it does not always come in fancy wrapping paper with brightly colored bows; rather it can come with the ugliest wrappings and trimmings, which are also called human nature.
Is there someone in your life that has inflicted great pain on your heart and spirit? Has this someone caused you to stumble in your walk with the Lord? Have you gone from a dislike of this person to a dying decay of resentment, bitterness and even hatred??
I’ve had this experience and I finally realized that this was a God given gift to me showing me His infinite mercy and wisdom. Yes, He has blessed me with the spiritual gifts of prophecy and wisdom and I have faith that moves mountains but with this one life that He put into mine, I could not love with a pure love, and thus, I became nothing.
Time has gone by while I have attempted to give this thorn to my Lord over and over. I testify to the fact that if we do not learn the lesson well the first time, the school master will return the lesson more severely and more painfully. The small thorn that once was a mere splinter had grown into the insurmountable weight of a cross and I had taken upon myself to bear the weight and after a time it had caused me to stumble.
I cannot change this person no matter how much I wish or try but God can change me and there lies my only hope. Hope is standing in the dark and looking out and seeing the light. I realized that to move forward I must surrender all of my emotions and feelings… I must surrender myself and put this person before me and above me in every way. I must reach out and hold them in my arms with an embrace and whisper, “I will never let you go for without you, without love for you, I am nothing.”
Friends, a new year begins along with a new day! Let us remove the weights of bitterness, resentment, and hatred, and begin anew! All the ugliness and trimmings of your gift will be made new when you realize the person that causes so much pain in your life is a gift sent by the hand of God to show you that all you do and all you behold is nothing…
… but the greatest of these is love.
The Excellence of Love gives all and expects nothing nor seeks anything by its giving. Love is simply giving while forsaking looking for anything in its return.
We seek to be a vessel, an outpouring of God’s love, to bring the good news to the afflicted, to bind up the broken hearted, to set the captive free, to comfort those who mourn, and to bring the oil of gladness and the mantle of praise to all that we meet and serve.
We undertake our mission through our outreach of ministering to the spirit, mind, and body, whether it be in renewal through silent retreat and prayer at WaterBrooks, through encouraging those with deafness and other physical challenges at Kennels of Levi, or through meeting the needs of our brothers and sisters among the homeless with Operation Silent Night.
We strive to fulfill our mission, not through our own might and power, but by resting on the firm guiding hand of faith in God’s providence, provisions and promises…for what He has started, He will so complete.