Deep Wounds to Great Glory!

Day 15 ~ I'm thankful for the scars...thankful for the deep wounds through which I've seen God's glory in ways I could never have imagined.  

I actually started this post on Tuesday, but didn't quite get around to finishing it. :)  Anyway, I ran across this quote on Tuesday morning, shared by Scotty Smith:
"In my deepest wound I saw your glory, and it dazzled me." ~ St. Augustine
I immediately decided that Day 15's 30 Days of Gratitude post would be based on that quote.   Then I popped over to see what this week's IOW quote was, and discovered this quote by one of my favorite missionary heroes...

 “ No wound? No scar?
Yet as the Master shall the servant be,
And pierced are the feet that follow Me;
But thine are whole. Can he have followed far
Who has no wound nor scar? ” 
Amy Carmichael

Through the wounds that we've experienced in recent years, I've realized that the deeper the wound, the more God has shown His glory in it, and the more amazed I've been by that glory.  I love Augustine's wording "...it dazzled me."  What an amazing thing to realize that the glory we are seeing now is just a glimpse...that as much as it is dazzling in its brilliance now, it is only a foretaste of what we will see one day!

I've struggled recently with a bit of a paradox in my life, however.  I know the truth of Augustine's statement, I have seen in my own life the incredible revelation of His glory in the wounds...and yet I desperately want to avoid that which would bring further wounds or scars into my life or the lives of my family.  I fight a constant {and often losing} battle with fear of further suffering or pain.  

I'm not talking about being cautious and careful and protective of our children. I believe we have a responsibility to do all that we can to protect our children, and I certainly don't believe we should go searching for suffering.   I'm talking about those situations in which we know that God has called us to a particular task which we know will lead us out of our comfort zone, or perhaps invite ridicule or criticism, or require sacrifice.  I'm also talking about those vague feelings of fear and dread about the future...about the unknown or imagined that is to come that could be unpleasant or downright earth-shattering.  

God calls us to follow Him.  He has told us that there will be suffering...sometimes great suffering...along the way.  He has also promised that He will never leave us or forsake us, and that if we share in His sufferings, we will also share in His glory.  He has shown us that firsthand, over and over, in the events of the last 7+ years.  He has proven His faithfulness over and over.  And yet there is still the struggle...

God has given me such a strong longing for our family...each one of us...to follow Him with all of our hearts.  We can't follow Him wholeheartedly if we are afraid of pain and suffering...if we are focused on the fear of wounds and scars, our eyes cannot be focused on Him.  I'm thankful for the glory He has shown in the wounds, and I am thankful for His faithfulness which has never wavered.  I'm thankful that He continues to teach me and draw me even in the times I want to run from suffering, despite all He has already taught me.  

...that I may know him and the power of his resurrection, and may share his sufferings, becoming like him in his death...
(Philippians 3:10)

For as we share abundantly in Christ's sufferings, so through Christ we share abundantly in comfort too.
(2 Corinthians 1:5)

Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery trial when it comes upon you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you. But rejoice insofar as you share Christ’s sufferings, that you may also rejoice and be glad when his glory is revealed.
(1 Peter 4:12-13)

The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, then heirs—heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, provided we suffer with him in order that we may also be glorified with him. For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us. For the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the sons of God. For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of him who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to corruption and obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God. For we know that the whole creation has been groaning together in the pains of childbirth until now. And not only the creation, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies. For in this hope we were saved. Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what he sees? But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience. 
(Romans 8:16-25)

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Tami Boesiger said...

I'm right there with you, sister, knowing God's faithfulness, yet fearing what may be ahead. I guess that's where faith truly kicks in. We keep following, though we don't know where it leads.

George & Angelia... said...

Amen, not only do we follow thru, we jump in, heart first... trusting, believing... LOVING.
Great post, always encouraging, thanks Jennifer. :)