Count It All Joy

Trials not only help us to grow as individuals, they give us an opportunity to become more like Christ.

On our voyage across the United States from West Virginia to Idaho, my mother and I took our time exploring as much as possible while we were blessed with the opportunity. Missouri allowed us to visit the Harry S. Truman Presidential Museum & Library. Regardless of your political affiliations, Presidential Libraries are pretty neat if you enjoy jumping into history for a time. Now, since I haven’t really studied American History since 9th grade….this part of our journey was a nice refresher. It was interesting to follow the political trail of one of the leaders of this country and to learn more about his personal background. It was a day immersed in the life of our 33rd President.

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My personal favorite sight was viewing Truman’s famous desk sign “The Buck Stops Here.” I now have a replica of this sign on my own desk to inspire me to press on. Sometimes life becomes overwhelming and work piles up. Dumping our problems on someone else may seem like a good idea at the time. In reality, no one can do our job as well as we can. We are unique. We were stitched together by the hands of God. He has given us individual talents and gifts which we can use everyday to reach a broken and hurting world. It isn’t always easy. Sometimes the shoes we have to fill just seem too big. But God has reminded us that nothing is too big for Him to handle. He will sustain us, strengthen us, and support us in this life no matter what path we walk. “Let us not grow weary of doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.” ~Galatians 6:9

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I was reading one of my favorite novels the other day. In Jane Eyre, Charlotte Bronte wrote: “Yet it would be your duty to bear it, if you could not avoid it: it is weak and silly to say you cannot bear what it is your fate to be required to bear.” Sometimes life brings us more than we think we can handle. We want to take the easy road out, to say that we simply can’t do it. We may be tempted to give up, but we have to press on. If we are placed in a position that requires us to give of ourselves, if our spirits are strained by the burdens we are up against, we should be thankful. Trials not only help us to grow as individuals, they give us an opportunity to become more like Christ. “Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness.” ~James 1:2-3

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Life is confusing, complicated, and it never works out the way we plan. Everyday new challenges await us. We have to learn to view those bumps in the road as opportunities. Maybe God is trying to tell us something, teach us a lesson, give us an experience that we can use to help someone else later on. God has given us a job to do. No matter what your chosen career path is, if you are the President, or a humble farmer….the buck has to stop with us. We have to give it everything we have within our heart and spirit to give. Maybe that extra push will allow us to reach someone in need, to help heal a hurting hurt, or to lead someone towards Christ. “Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as for the Lord.” ~Colossians 3:23

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