Monday, August 31, 2015

Guest Post: "What If?"

Many of us may know or recognize the popular Christian song “Blessings” by Laura Story. It’s a beautiful song about her faith that was put through the unexpected fires of life in 2006 when her husband was diagnosed with a brain tumor. Their life would never be the same. How does one find blessings at that point? Do we need to redefine what God’s “blessings” could mean?

What if Your blessings came through raindrops, what if Your healing comes through tears?... What if trials of this life, are Your mercies in disguise? 

Life is filled with things we don’t expect, but the Bible urges us to respond by trusting God and continuing to worship Him. The words of James 1:2 (consider it a great joy…whenever you experience various trials) challenge us to find a hopeful, joyful place. What if my greatest disappointments or the aching of this life is a revealing of a greater thirst this world can’t satisfy? We will always have more questions than answers in our life. To find joy in our trials we need to choose to interpret our circumstances based on what we know and hold to be true about God. 1 Thessalonians 5: 18 urges us to give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.

I would like to share a story about Fanny Crosby from a book by Patrick and Barbara Kavanaugh called Devotions from the World of Music: “Frances Jane Crosby, better known as ‘Fanny’ has written more hymns than anyone else…a total of 8,000! She didn’t start writing hymns until the age of 44, but she lived 95 years and often wrote as many as 8 hymns each day. At one point, she was under contract with the publisher Biglow and Main to submit three hymns each week for publication. Familiar hymns include: To God Be the Glory, Tell Me the Story of Jesus, and Blessed Assurance.

All of these accomplishments would be outstanding for any hymn writer, but it is even more remarkable when we learn that Fanny Crosby was blind. As a baby of six weeks old, she was blinded permanently by a doctor’s improper treatment, yet she had no bitterness in her heart. Her positive attitude is an inspiration to us all in finding a blessing in disguise.

“A minister once said to her, ‘I think it is a great pity that the Master did not give you sight when He showered so many other gifts upon you’. But she exclaimed, ‘Do you know that if at birth I had been able to make one petition, it would have been that I should have been born blind?’ When the astonished preacher asked, ‘Why?’ she responded, ‘Because when I get to heaven, the first face that shall ever gladden my sight will be that of my Savior!’

Laura has redefined blessings from God in her life. She says “there is a blessedness that comes through waiting on the Lord. There’s an intimacy that comes in our walk with the Lord through walking through that valley. There’s a reliance on His word that we only know when everything else fades away…” What if we made a list of all the blessings in our own lives and asked God to forgive any feelings of ingratitude for what we have in our life. Would we then allow Him to fill our hearts with cheerful thankfulness?

Kaitlyn Davros is the Associate Director of Music and Organist. Here at Sardis, Kaitlyn’s expertise is engaged as she plays the organ, piano, and keyboards for our traditional and contemporary worship services, accompanies the sanctuary choir, occasionally rings in the bell choirs, and assists in growing our music ministry, especially the children and youth music programs.

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