Thursday, July 10, 2014

Biweekly Bits #12: Things Taken Away

After writing 26 bits, I realized that there is so much I could elaborate on with each of my bits. So I decided to turn them into a biweekly (i.e. fortnightly) series, for the next year.

There's a blessing in things taken away too. Most of the time, when we think of God's blessings, we think of things given to us. Blessings are indeed gifts from God, but there are times when the "gift" is something being taken away, instead of being given.

I think very often, particularly in western Christian culture, we are taught to believe that God blesses us by giving us things, whether it is by providing material things or giving us less tangible spiritual blessings. And it's true, God gives us many things which add to our lives. But when God takes something away from us, we almost without exception see it as a negative thing, a burden of the human condition to be borne. Yet we forget to consider, to remember, that sometimes the blessing is in the things that God takes away from us.

Here are four points to meditate on when it comes to the things that God may take away:

Sometimes God takes something away to give us something greater.

Sometimes God takes something away to change our perspective.

Sometimes God takes something away to change our focus.

Sometimes God takes something away because its season is over.

I remember a few years ago a friend of mine lost his job, rather unexpectedly. He was pretty upset about it, and very disappointed, but I remember saying to him that losing that particular job was a good thing, because God was taking him to new places in his ministry, and the job would have been a burden. And sure enough, my friend has been richly blessed in the years that have passed since losing that job. Every step of the way God has provided.

We always think of loss as something to be sad about, and many times it is. It's a scary thing to lose a job, or for a relationship to end, or even to lose a favourite item that you own. But sometimes, even in the midst of losing a job or an opportunity, or having a friendship or relationship end, there is joy, because the Lord has still blessed us.

Be blessed and shine with joy!

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A person finds joy in giving an apt reply—
and how good is a timely word! -Prov 15:23