13 – The Value of the Cross

A humble, bold, and necessary word on the Cross and suffering.

I am awed by what suffering can produce.  You and I are nothing without the cross.  I agonize and cry when the cross is working within me, but when it is over I look back in admiration for what God has accomplished.  Of course I am then ashamed that I bore it so poorly.  I have learned so much from my foolish reactions.

 

 

You yourself must endure the painful process of change.  There is much more at work here than your instant maturity.  God wants to build a relationship with you that is based on faith and trust and not on glamorous miracles.

 

God uses the disappointments, disillusionments, and failures of your life to take your trust away from yourself and help you put your trust in Him.  It is like being burned in a slow fire, but you would rather be burned up in a blaze of glory wouldn’t you?  How would this fast burn detach you from yourself?  Thus God prepares events to detach you from yourself and from others. [I’m not a fan of his wording in these last couple sentences, but I understand what he’s getting at]

 

God is your Father, do you think He would ever hurt you?  He just cuts you off from those things you love in the wrong way.  You cry like a baby when God removed something or someone from your life, but you would cry a lot more if you saw the eternal harm your wrong attachments cause you.

 

You do not see with the eyes of eternity.  God knows everything.  Nothing happens without His consent.  You are upset by small losses, but you do not see eternal gains!  Don’t dwell on your suffering.  Your oversensitivity makes your trials worse.  Abandon yourself to God.

 

Everything in you that is not already a part of the established kingdom of God needs the cross.  When you accept the cross in love, His kingdom begins to come to life within you.  You must bear the cross and be satisfied with what pleases God.  You have need of the cross.  The faithful Giver of every good gift gives the cross to you with His own hand.  I pray you will come to see how blessed it is to be corrected for your own good.

-Francois Fenelon

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