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Thursday, March 4, 2010

What I’m Reading Today: 2 Corinthians 4

The social networking websites like Facebook and Twitter are wonderful things because they provide you with the opportunity to catch up with folks you haven’t seen for years. In the last 24 hours, for instance, I regained contact with a woman named Julie who was three years ahead of me in high school.

Julie was a remarkably upbeat person who always made time for those around her. She had a laugh that was infectious. You simply could not be in a bad mood around her. Needless to say, I was excited when my friend Ricky helped me reconnect with Julie.

In the process of getting re-connected, I couldn’t believe what Julie has lived through since just the first of the year. She went through the experience of suddenly losing her spouse in the middle of February. And then just last week, she was diagnosed with inoperable ovarian cancer.

It wasn’t exactly the easiest time to try to re-establish contact with Julie. And Julie’s situation raises all sorts of issues for me as well. Her situation is one of those that makes me wonder why some people get such a disproportionate amount of pain and suffering in their lives. No matter how hard try I articulate an answer to that question, nothing seems satisfactory.

I did find Paul’s words from the fourth chapter of 2 Corinthians helpful though – especially the part where he wrote: “So we’re not giving up. How could we! Even though on the outside it often looks like things are falling apart on us, on the inside, where God is making new life, not a day goes by without [God’s] unfolding grace.”

While the challenges you and I are wrestling with perhaps are not as challenging as those facing Julie, but they are serious within the context of our own lives. The next time you find yourself in a place when you feel at the end of your rope, I hope you’ll remember Paul’s words. They remind us that our quality of our life isn’t determined by those things that happen TO us; the quality of life is determined by what’s happening WITHIN us.

My love and prayers are with you Julie!

Til next time…

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