Are there memories you are trying to ignore and push away? Do those memories evoke feelings of sadness, shame, anger, and disappointments?
If we had the power to determine the course of events in our lives, we would only wish for the happy and smooth-sailing times and discard the unhappy and rough times.
By Joanne Liaw Sook Ling
The sun’s golden ray penetrates the sand
The warm, soft sand is caressing my feet
With each step, I’m starting to understand
Why God gives memories both bitter and sweet
The waters are calm and the tide is low
The waves have brought back old seashells to me
I picked them up and laid them in a row
I thought I had drowned them in the deep sea
Each shell contains a meaningful memory
I thought I had cast them all away
But God has now brought them back to me
He’s helped me face them with courage each day
I am now beginning to understand
Why He’s made some shells smooth and others rough
He’s refining me with His sovereign hands
He’s using trials to make me strong and tough
I thank my wise God for the hidden good
That He’s brought out from pain and brokenness
Though sorrow and grief taste like bitter food
I trust in His love, mercy, and goodness
My great God is transforming me each day
To be more like Jesus Christ, His dear Son
Though He sovereignly gives and takes away
Into His strong and loving arms, I run
I smiled as I laid the pretty seashells
By the golden shore, neatly in a row
From my dewy eyes, tears readily fell
As I gazed fondly at their lovely glow
Points for Reflection:
Not only that, but we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame because God's love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.
(Romans 5:3-5 ESV)
· God is infinitely wiser and more long-sighted than us. He knows what lies ahead, we don’t. He knows the purposes for the trials of the past and present. He uses the rough and hard times to transform us into the likeness of Jesus Christ. He makes us stronger, wiser, more patient, and more dependent on Him.
· Looking back at the tough times, are you thankful to God for the lessons you have learnt? Are you struggling to see the purpose of your current disappointments and heartbreak?
· Don’t give up but continue asking God for strength to persevere and endure. You will bear fruit for Him that is beyond your imagination. The fruit of love, kindness, perseverance, endurance, and patience that point others to Christ.