Thursday, January 7, 2016

Bitter Cups & Life's Thorns

Each of us have trying times in our lives. Weight of worlds rest on our shoulders, yet we are asked to take one more step. With shaking, quivering legs, we struggle to inch our feet forward on the quest to live up to our divine potential. The weight we shoulder seems to get heavier as our spiritual muscles have to exert more force to continue holding our base load. Occasionally in moments of weakness, we break down, and all we desire is for this weight to be removed from us.

In this time, we may feel to cry out "Abba, Father, all things are possible unto thee; take away this cup from me"1 We may feel we cannot continue, that we would be better served just laying down our load, and giving up on life, completely and totally. We may feel that we are in a dark place, and nobody could possibly understand what we have going on in our life. Some might seek the solace of solitude, while others may seek the bosom of friends. Best of all, some may seek the face of God, and find Him.

Regardless of coping strategy, one reality remains: "if the bitter cup does not pass, drink it and be strong, trusting in happier days ahead."2 There will be times in this mortal, fallen sojourn we will have to pass through pain and sorrow. We are promised the earth will give us "sorrow...Thorns also and thistles".3 While also literal, our daily paths will have patches of thorns and of thistles through which we must pass. Outwardly, those thorns and thistles may appear to be roses and Scottish flowers, but to us, there is pain in these patches, but we must keep pressing on.

Remember also, while it may seem nobody could possibly understand, there is one who does. The Romans "plaited a crown of thorns, they put it upon [Christ's] head".4 Plaited is a rather interesting term, meaning roughly to braid together.5 The Savior's crown was all the thorns you and I have had to wade through, all bundled together to be answered upon His head. He understands. He drank from the cup, he dealt with your thorns, intimately. He will help you through your lows, because He went even lower. And he can help you with your weight of worlds on your shoulders, because ALL worlds rested on His!