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Archive for January, 2009

istock_000000391369xsmallLife is so bizarre sometimes. Here we are at the end of 2008, moving into a new year. I had a terrible year in a lot of ways, but God turned everything around in the most unexpected way. In fact, He used a near-catastrophic accident to wake me up to see just how blessed I am. I struggled through months of serious depression, and just as I was starting to get back on my feet, I had an accident that could have ended my life or left me disabled. But it was through this accident that God showed me some very important things.

He showed me that I really am loved – by Him, by my family and by my friends. People from church fell over themselves to help me, bringing meals, driving me to appointments, visiting me – really taking care of me. As a result of the accident, I’ve had some wonderful, priceless time with my elderly parents. Another thing God showed me is that life is so precious. Every moment is a gift from Him to be savoured and treasured. Nothing matters more than our relationships. Things that troubled me before my accident were put into perspective rather quickly at the realization that God had protected me and spared my life. What could have been an ending for me became a new beginning in God’s hands, a sort of divine wake-up call to fix my eyes on Jesus, to live my life with purpose and an attitude of gratitude.

What delights me is that the whole situation has God’s fingerprints all over it. He loves to work in unexpected ways, through situations that look hopeless or impossible. Think of the death of Lazarus in John 11. Jesus knew that Lazarus was sick, but instead of rushing to heal him, he stayed where he was for two more days. By the time he reached Bethany, Lazarus had been in the tomb for four days. There was no question that he was dead. When Jesus asked for the stone to be rolled away, Martha protested that the body would smell. In response, Jesus said, “did I not tell you if you would believe you would see the glory of God?” He then raised Lazarus from the dead. Nobody expected this to happen or thought Jesus could do it. The whole reason He waited before coming was to show God’s glory. He did something impossible. So what seemed like an ending, an omega, turned into a beginning, an alpha – and not just for Lazarus, but for all the people who witnessed his rebirth. That is incredibly exciting. I know God spared me not just for me, but for people around me. They witnessed a miracle first hand. Never stop praying and believing for the salvation of your loved ones.

We all have endings and beginnings throughout our lives, but with Jesus, nothing is ever final. What seems like a catastrophe or a dead-end can be a new beginning in God’s hands. It’s all about perspective. I’m doing my best now to look for Jesus in every situation, no matter how hopeless it may seem, because I know He’s there. What is faith if not the expectation that God is working on our behalf to turn bad things around for good? Lazarus had been dead for four days and his body smelled, but this didn’t faze Jesus. He isn’t put off by the stench of the dead, buried parts of us either. He will take the ashes of our lives and change them into something beautiful and lasting, if we let Him. I hope the coming year will be one in which your faith and hope in Jesus is strengthened. The Lord bless you and keep you.

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