Photo by Gabrielle Allman
Can you be grateful for everything that has happened in your life-not just for the good things but for all that has brought you to this day? Remember, it was the suffering of God’s Son that brought forth a family of people known as Christians. My own suffering is what God used to bring me to where I am today.
Right in the middle of the tears, the dance of joy can be felt. Seen from below, from a human perspective, there is an enormous distinction between good times and bad, between sorrow and joy. but from above, in the eyes of God, sorrow and joy are never separated. Where there is pain, there is also healing. Henri Nouwen
I found an old photo album that I had made my husband for his 4oth birthday. I had asked people to write him notes or letters of how he affected their life. I peppered the letters with pictures of the writers and our family. Looking upon it made me smile and I was so grateful that I had the thoughtfulness of mind to do that when I did, for our mothers are no longer here with us. Their letters are especially special!
But looking at the album also brought a deep sense of gravity to all of the trials and tribulations we have been through. There have been so many, down- right, ongoing, hard times, with little release. I haven’t always handle them with grace. I have had an emotional break down and I have tried escaping. I understand what Nouwen is saying about our perceived distinction between good times and bad times. And I can also bear witness to what was the apparent worst time of my life, bringing the exact change and healing that I needed.
We are all on this journey together. We can help each other become more grateful for life even with pain. God is hidden in the pain and suffering of the world, and we get to reach out in compassion and show our love to others…that is the point<3