God's love poured out into our hearts.

Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hopedoes not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, whohas been given to us. (Romans 5:3-5)

 

In a Small Place

 

by Annie Johnson Flint

Fret not because thy place is small,
Thy service need not be,
For thou canst make it all there is
Of joy and ministry.

The dewdrop, as the boundless sea,
In God’s great place has part;
And this is all He asks of thee;
Be faithful where thou art.

In thee His mighty hand can show
The wonders of His grace,
And He can make the humblest room
A high and holy place.

Thy life can know the blessedness
Of resting in His will;
His fullness flows unceasingly
Thy cup of need to fill.

His strength upon thy weakness waits,
His power for thy task.
What more, O child of all His care,
Could any great one ask?

 

“Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope.  And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.” (Romans 5:3-5)

 

SUFFERING CHANGES US

 

As I pondered the words of Annie Johnson Flint’s poetry, I realized that the suffering of my chronic illness has often caused me to view my place here as so small. And yet, if I read this Scripture along with the poem, I can see that God views our suffering and our place much differently than we do. He is always at work, bringing His fruit–His abundant fruit from these very places.

What if we chose to look through His eyes, to ask Him to show us where He has been pouring out His love into our hearts through the Holy Spirit? What if we asked Him to show us how His great strength is being formed right here in our weaknesses? And what if we looked upon our small places and let Him transform them into the very places of greatest hope?

Oh, what a change to see that He is bringing His glory into these very places of suffering.

Bettie Gilbert

Bettie Gilbert

Chronic Joy Contributing Writer

You can find Bettie blogging from her home in the far north suburbs of Chicago at bettiegsraseasons.com. She is walking forward with Jesus in the middle of her pain and weakness from multiple chronic illnesses. The beauty of nature as well as her family (including nine young grandchildren) are Bettie's joys. She and her husband have been married for over 40 years and take great delight in their weekend coffee breaks together.

Devotional Guide

Devotional Guide

Chronic Joy® devotionals are an invitation to take one gentle step, to pray in a comforting and familiar or perhaps new-to-you way, or to cry out on behalf of one precious life today … maybe even yours.

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