Stormy Weather

Each night lately around here, brews with it another powerful thunderstorm. I recall the first evening, lying in bed, unsure if I heard bits of hail or just hard pelting raindrops pounding the window, imagining the ruin I would wake up to in my garden and potted flowers. Yet when the sun began shining, I rose to find every plant looking healthier than before. And each morning after storm, there has been new flowers that seemly bloomed overnight despite the wind and pelting rain. 
It makes me think of my life on earth, when life's storms rage, do I emerge blooming or stripped and dying? Neil Anderson, makes the analogy explaining that we as believers are diamonds in the rough, but given enough time and pressure, we will emerge brilliant, shining diamonds, revealing the glory of God (Victory over the Darkness, 84).
As I reflect on my own pressures, the theme of loss emerges; grievousness. The biggest loss of Micah, first on the list, if followed by a loss of friendships left behind in Montana, loss of grandma, loss of intimate and edifying relationships, loss of the essence of Montana in the summer, loss of deep  friendship with the engineer (because life is too busy.) As the tears flow, I know I have much for which to be thankful. My God is a good God. But I am needy and afflicted, as Mike shared this week;
I am afflicted and needy; hurry to me, God. You are my help and my deliverer; Lord, do not delay. Psalm 70:5
Though I ache for the day Jesus takes us home, He has given me work to do here, and I am determined to persevere. Given enough time, these pressures will surely create in me a brilliant shining like a diamond that reveals His glory. 
Determine today to persevere through life's storms and pressures. Claim James 1:2-4:
Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing. 

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