Thanks be to the Almighty, a cool breeze made it’s way through my door this morning. Friends, Family, Coworkers and Acquaintances, did you survive the fiery summer? Is your soul burning, perhaps with love, perhaps with anger, perhaps with desperation, depression or joy. Have you let the fiery summer burn your soul or have you buried the embers below. If you have followed the flame to it’s source what have you found? Imperfection, Longing, Conflict, Love, Sadness or Confusion?This summer have you been able to avoid vice for a long enough period to feel the ache and burn in your soul? FEEL THE BURN.

Realization: no one escapes the fire.

It took quite a few years for me to realize that following Jesus was not an escape from suffering but a commitment to suffer honestly. I remember in a class called “suffering and the heart of the judge” that I took many years ago, my teacher was teaching us how to meditate on Christ and she spoke of the pain of longing. She said “you sit with this longing for as long as possible until you can’t possibly sit any longer and then you go and do laundry or something practical”. I’ve been running from that pain ever since. If only practical things like laundry could really help, maybe at first they help, but then you have to find something stronger than laundry, like maybe dishes.

 When we let the longing over take us, we are letting the Spirit of God have access to our soul, when this happens we can’t hide our brokenness, we can’t hide the fact that we suffer, and we can’t hide the fact that in our avoidance of truth/suffering/fire, we have harmed others. This is what I’ve found to be true: Honest suffering leads to honest celebration, or another way to say it is real pain leads to real joy.

 Jesus:goodness

   The idea here is that when Jesus is in your life coincidentally goodness is as well, God is good, so if God lives in your heart your life will be good right?…..well yeah, until, disease, betrayal, or some other form of injustice comes and scrapes its’s ugly fingernail across your chalkboard theology screaming louder, and more effectively into your heart, than any pentecostal preacher has ever been able. Fill in the blank, we have all seen life not turn out to be the rainbow we expected. For some though it is a very intense, dark experience, that shatters the core of their reality. God did not provide the good, perfect, protected life that was expected. Now there could be alot of different reasons why and not one experiance is the same and they are all from the fount of evil; however, like a band of gold through a black rock, grace can be found weaving in and out of our suffering. This strand of grace is the work God bringing us to glory(2nd Cor. 4:17). The reason, usually, is that our hearts and minds have been grounded on deceptive wrong thoughts of who God really is; unfortunately, the only way for change to be produced is through the death of those thoughts and beliefs, death does not come without suffering. Many times when we are experiencing suffering as children of God there is a work being done. So suffering: goodness. You see it is His goodness that will not allow us to think wrongly about who Himself is. It is only by the grace of God that we even have the ability to think of him at all, It is even more grace that he works through us to give us true revelation of his nature and doesn’t leave us at the mercy of man’s erroneous understanding.