Tuesday, September 06, 2005



Suffering

There is such suffering all around us.

Please pray for Rebekah and her family. Her daddy's post last night was heartbreaking. Please pay a visit at www.rebekahspage.blogspot.com and leave a comment.

Of course, the victims of the hurricane are constantly on my mind and in my heart. However, I am beginning to sense much hope and resolve from those people who were affected by it. I am amazed how many Ameriican people are now offering to open their homes and hearts to help the displaced. We are a blessed country who know how to reach out and help our fellow citizens.

Some of my clients are going through an especially difficult time. Their faith in others and in God has been shattered, and they do not have the strength or courage to pick up those pieces. Their stories would render you silent and make your heart stand still.

And, of course, each of us have some degree of suffering in our lives right now - whether it be financial difficulties, loss of a loved one, a chronic illness, relationship "issues", unemployment or threat of losing a job, or other painful things.

What do YOU do when faced with suffering? Do you whine and complain? Do you blame others for it? Do you bury your head in the sand and try to ignore it? Do you offer it up to God? Do you try to find meaning in it? Do you ask others - especially God - to help you through?

I probably do a little of each to a certain degree, and at different stages of my suffering. Sometimes, I even switch from one way of handling suffering to another at the drop of a hat. But what I have come to realize is that even though I may complain, blame, or try to ignore - I fare far better if I offer it up to God, try to find meaning, and ask others and God for help. I am not able to exactly "conquer" my suffering, but at least find the strength to face it head on.

I shall keep each of you in my prayers as you face your own suffering today. I shall ask God to help you through so that hope will replace despair, strength will replace exhaustion, and faith will replace the longing for answers.

12 Comments:

At 10:50 AM, Blogger Tyra said...

Wonderful, wonderful post! I do try and find the brighter side of things as I go through them, but I do admit I've dealt with certain issues with a bad attitude for sure.

Thanks!

 
At 12:09 PM, Blogger Julana said...

Hi Valerie,
I came here through Barbara's blog. I'm a Buckeye too. :-)

 
At 12:40 PM, Blogger Paul said...

I thank you for your prayers, MKM. It is not my habit to seek God's help or solace because I don't believe it will help, other than the catharsis of having someone to turn to and speak with in the dark of night.
I do think it is those of strong faith who open their homes and hearts to strangers, well, most of them because they feel God instructing them to help - or they feel something, I don't know.
It is my fervent wish that all those in pain and agony be released and live a happy life. I wish that as hard as any prayer. It may not help; it's the best I can do.

 
At 2:44 PM, Blogger Paula said...

Rebekah's Daddy's post broke my heart this morning too. They are always in my prayers and thoughts.

When life throws me for a loop, I usually questions God's plan. Eventually I rest in God's will and trust Him to take care of it all for me. The life we live is full of pain and sorrow, without God, how can we survive?

Blessings Girlfriend,

 
At 6:26 PM, Blogger Barbara said...

Valerie,

I have to say that, even though I do try so very hard to "count my blessings", it takes something like reading about Rebekah or the devestation caused by Katrina to really bring it home to me just how blessed I really am.

OK, we have money worries...but these fade into insignificance when you read such things.

I was so heartened when we heard in the British news reports, of church congregations throwing open their homes to affected folks. For this to make the press here is a blessing in itself - the news is always very "politically correct".

I think what I am trying to say is that it is a painfully humbling experience to take my eyes away from me and what seems such a drama and to realise what other people are going through. I need to be more selfless and less selfish..

There is "daily bread" and "DAILY BREAD"....

Sorry - its late and I am waffling on.

Lovely to see that Julana has visited you... and things in common too....

Bless you Valerie - and thank you for shaking me out of my "pity party"

 
At 7:15 PM, Blogger Sarah said...

Great post. Wow.

 
At 9:37 PM, Blogger HeyJules said...

I'm with you on this one. Offer it up and give it to God. And, as a very smart blogger once told me, "when you find yourself worrying about it again, throw it back up to God and tell Him to Keep it this time!"

 
At 11:14 PM, Blogger My Kid's Mom said...

Tyra: I know I've dealt with certain issues with a bad attitude, too. Doesn't it seem to make the situation even worse?

Sarah & Anna - So glad you guys had such a wonderful time on your "dream" vacation! Give Anna a big hug for me, OK?

HeyJules - I'll have to remember what that smart blogger told you!

Julana: Welcome to my blog! So, you're from Ohio, too - and I hope this won't cause you to think too poorly about me, but I'm technically not a "Buckeye" fan - I'm a Wolverine (U of Michigan)- I was born in that "state up north". Glad you stopped by - I'll come and visit you really soon!


Hey Paula - I love the new blogskin on your site! It is just beautiful. THanks for stopping by today - I'll talk to you soon!


Barbara - I think we all go through "pity parties" at times. And then situations like Hurricane Katrina and Rebekah are gifts to us to remind us how preciouse life is and to handle each other with care. You know, I have my strong opinions about how the press (not just the US but also the international press) has been handling the reporting on Katrina. But, now is not the time to discuss it. Suffice it to say that I don't think the press has given sufficient coverage about the faith-based response to this catastrophe, nor has it shown the stories of all the heroes from other communities other than New Orleans. Now, I am the one who is
"waffling on". (What does that mean?).

 
At 3:55 AM, Blogger Barbara said...

Valerie,

Sorry - I don't think that you may not understand my English!!

To "waffle" on...I also use to "whitter" (another good Anglo-Saxon word meaning the same sort of thing.

to talk incessantly or nonsensically - to vacilliate - and whitter is the bird chirping sort of noise - we use it to mean talking a whole lot of rubbish basically!!!!!

 
At 10:46 AM, Blogger Stacy said...

Suffering is a part of life. One of the responsibilites of being a parent is to teach this to our children. How we handle a crisis is the one of the gifts we give to them. They learn to cope from watching us.

 
At 5:20 PM, Blogger Julana said...

Valerie,
My husband is originally from Chicago, then from MI. He is a fan of the Sox and Michigan State, not U of M.
I won't hold the Wolverine allegiance against you. But I prefer scarlet and gray. :-)

 
At 7:56 AM, Blogger My Kid's Mom said...

Stacy: Amen. Kids are so in tune with our moods, and watch to see if our actions coincide with our words.

Julana: It gets real interesting around here when the OSU-Michigan game happens - especially the two years I was at OSU in grad school. I was afraid to let people know I am a die-hard Michigan fan. I hope to get to know you better.

 

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