Well, my family and I are back in the good old Garden State. The year we spent in Colorado was one of growth (and, hopefully) spiritual maturity. But, it was a rough and difficult process. Because, when you’re going through a baptism of fire, it’s not pleasant. Not one iota. Being stripped down in almost every facet of your life takes a toll. However, as I said, we knew it was for a reason, but that didn’t make it any easier. The refinement of something is very often only successful through that very thing being put through intense heat. And, believe me…we felt the heat. However, we knew it was for a purpose. His purpose. And, we’ll rest and find peace and joy in that. A spiritual walk, at times, will always have in it struggles and challenges. It’s what God does to bring us to the place where He wants us to be. Without it, we just won’t have the foundational and spiritual anchor(s) to succeed in what He has for us. A father disciplines his children and it’s no different with our heavenly Father. No matter if you’re 18 or 80…you can expect it to happen.
I may have mentioned this scripture in another blog essay, but I think it bears repeating again. James 1:2-4 (NIV) says “Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.” All the apostles experienced it. Open the bible to just about any page and you won’t be able to read very much until you see it for yourself. And, believe me…our experiences come nowhere near the pain and suffering they went through.
Consider it pure joy. Well, that was the most difficult part for us, but with His help, that’s just what we found. We realized that we didn’t want to lack anything and that this process was essential to bring to fruition just such an outcome in our lives.
So, right now, we’re looking forward to seeing what He has for us. The excitement we feel can barely be contained. We know that what lies ahead will be for a greater good. Not only for my family, but for those we love and cherish too. My wife and I were blessed to have secured employment here in NJ weeks before we left Colorado. And, we know there is purpose in that too. There’s purpose in everything. In a spiritual walk, nothing occurs by accident. The orchestration is incredible and it’s amazing to watch the Lord do the work. To be able to see the thread of Christ in our lives as we go through it is reason enough for us just to have a relationship with Him. But, He wants more for us. And, THAT is pure joy.
We are lucky, and Blessed to have you back brother.
Thank you for the kind words my friend…I’m looking forward to seeing you for coffee!!!
As you know……..I “knew” you would return. I felt your presence and saw you standing there. Remembering that moment and knowing you are now here gives me goosebumps. What an awesome energy!!! I feel so lucky!!! So glad that you are back. :o)
Thanks so much Nicolle…we’re so glad to be back “home”!
Looking forward to seeing you and Joe in the gym and “seeing what it looks like”!!! 🙂
How amazing it was to see you tonight, Larry. Words will never express the joy that fills my heart now that you are back. I cannot wait to spend many more years getting to know you even better, especially face to face, now that you’re back in NJ.
It was wonderful to have dinner with you also Stacy!
Can’t wait to start working on those goals!!!
God’s blessings as you seek His will for the next steps He has planned for your life.
We’re very excited for what He has for us!
(btw…I’m doing all my calculations on a Dunkin’ Donuts napkin!)
I am here in Cape Canaveral FL waiting for Cyn to fly in next week…was in the DD today here…some things just never pass away!
I will add my thoughts as well….I am also glad your home Buddy. I can’t wait to get together again as soon as is possible. While Colorado was always in your heart, it seems that He has reminded you that New Jersey is your home!
Thanks JB…looking forward to catching up with you too!