Thursday, February 25, 2016

Rejoicing in Suffering

Battling frustration since last night.
     Don't know who to vote for in the Republican primary election next Tuesday. The election is becoming a nightmare! Praying a couple of the candidates will drop out before next Tuesday to narrow the choices down a bit. Of course the one I really wish would drop out won't because he is doing too well! (I'll let you figure it out.) Several other races here in Texas also need deciding on and I have even less information to go on about those candidates.
     Then my doctor has ordered a slew of blood tests--modern doctors don't need leaches, they just order blood work. I don't want to lose more blood, energy and time! I'm just getting my energy back (from reducing the potassium last week, maybe?) Have a lot I want and need to get done. Got on a roll yesterday with updating finances in preparation for tax time. Still lots more to do.
     Also need to get busy on our applications for the Israel trip, if we're going, that is. Reading the travel advisory on the U.S. State Dept website last night made me just want to stay home! At least they didn't mention any problems in Israel to be concerned about. But the info seems to be several months out of date. Not a real confidence booster!
     Isn't this is a modern, first-world problem, though?
     "Where, of all the wonderful places in the world, should we jet off to to celebrate our anniversary?"
     "Gotta check off our "bucket list," and see the world before we're too old!"
     A couple of hundred years ago people stayed put didn't they? Well, except for all those plucky pilgrims and pioneers who came and founded this country, that is. They risked their lives to start this "new world." I've been wondering lately, "what would they think if they could see us now?" Would they wish they had just stayed put in the old one?

Devotions this morning took me to Romans 5-- "And we rejoice in the hope of the glory of God..." Ah, isn't that nice?...
I kept reading, "Not only so, but we also rejoice in our sufferings..."  Wait a minute--what was that? We, "rejoice in our sufferings!"
Oh. Sigh.
How? why? "Because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character, and character, hope."

This reminds me of how my Dad used to say, "It's good for you! It builds character!" when I complained. I didn't appreciate it much. Now that I have a few more years experience, I can see the wisdom in it. But then, he also joked that burnt toast was good for me. He said, "it'll put hair on your chest!" I'm glad he was wrong about that!

Anyway, as I thought about my litany of complaints this morning. I noticed there are things in there I could be thankful for. At least I can try:

I'm thankful:
1. That I have a lot more energy this week!
2. That I made good progress on finances yesterday.
3. That John was willing to take the time (and is well enough) to help with some of the financial tasks I needed his help on last night.
4. That we still do have a free country where we can vote as our conscience leads.
5. That we got a special financial gift recently so that we can take special trips "before we are too old to do it" (I sometimes wonder if it's already, "too late") But I am thankful for the gift and the thought behind it!

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