Friday, May 15, 2009

Glory in Chaos

"How can we glory in tribulation?"

The question was asked and then, leaning forward and lowering her voice, just like she was about to impart some great secret, she looked around the room to make sure she had every one's attention. To be honest, I was all ears. She had just led a wonderful discussion on having faith through our trials; the importance of depending on Him, trusting Him, and never denouncing His truth no matter how hard it gets. We talked of His innocent blood spilt and the importance of not forsaking that, and how the nature of our trials are more spiritual than of tests of physical prosecution. All this accumulating to this final question. My heart burned, and I too leaned forward with a desire to share. She spoke, "The glory is in the success."


My heart fell flat. I think I understand what she meant by this, but I couldn't have disagreed more with this as a final statement. I mean, what if I fail, as I so often do? Success is so vague, so dependent on perspective. Such a statement without defining success, was a like appreciating a greener lawn and missing the beauty of the storm.


Glory in success is obvious, I mean, who wouldn't? But what about now? Isn't there more...even more required, than sitting huddled under a blanket, surviving the storm? Recently I read a post by Amber at therunamuck, and she asked similar questions.

What does it mean to seek Gods kingdom and His righteousness? Where is His
kingdom in our dirty houses and in our daily relationships? What does
simplicity look like?

She continues to blog about these questions, as I have continued to think deeper than my knee-jerk answers. Maybe the first question should be, what is His kingdom.....what is His glory? Is glory simply the joy of accomplishment, or is it part of the struggle? Does it get dirty and mangled, gashed and torn?

Sunday was Mother's day. Seriously, I've been a mom long enough to know what the day is all about, but to be honest I wasn't looking for any real special treatment, I just wanted to spend time with my kids, but the whole day seemed to be filled with fighting. It was so stressful I was ready to send them all out with their dad so I could....I don't know...

So where's the glory in that? Where's the kingdom in that....simplicity...yeah, get them out of my face and I'm sure in an hour or two I will love them again...maybe. Even still, I felt something more, it was in the back of my head and lingering at the edge of my heart, and once I noticed it, it came pushing through the aggravation of my ornery bunch on my happy day. I am so thankful....thankful to Him for these kids, and I prayed to see more clearly what they must be screaming for just as loud as I was screaming for them to stop screaming. By bedtime, sweet bedtime, we found peace.....peace amongst wet pants and hurt feelings, and around the crumbs on my couch we snuggled and read and even laughed. Touch and forgiveness; trust rebuilt...glory in chaos.

One of my favorite times to take pictures is just before a storm, when everything seems to be getting dark....the light is amazing. Not the bright beautiful light of a spring morning, but a light that brings out contrast and different hues.....shades that only exist in that moment. Such an interesting beauty. Whether the storm will be just a light passing mist, or a violent hail hurling wind, that moment of queer wonder is the key to seeing the glory in the storm.

The simplicity of gratitude, a showing of faith's power over fear. Gratitude doesn't just loiter in ease and beauty, it blows though doubt, washes though loneliness, and shines clarity on grief and pain. I know this isn't all encompassing, everyone has to find their own path, but for me, gratitude is key in seeing His glory in the everyday, feeling His glory when my heart is broken, and giving glory to Him through it all.

Humbly acknowledging His ways....striving to make them my own.


  1. Es--That insight is amazing and what I needed today. Thank you for sharing your thoughts.

  2. Oh, I cannot explain to you what a whiny baby I've been - worse than any toddler. Thank you so much for reminding me of our goal. It's a million wonders that God let's us, in our depraved nastiness, even know the truth - must less speak it.

    I love this: "The simplicity of gratitude, a showing of faith's power over fear." Whoosh! That was good.


Please share your expressions!

Related Posts with Thumbnails