So excited to be here again. It’s been a really busy week. A couple of weekends ago was my High School’s Homecoming. As some of you may know, I am apart of the Alumni Association. We did our annual Tailgate and it was successful. There were a couple of hiccups but none that we didn’t handle.
This week, I had really interesting conversations about relationships and how men deal with conflict and what God can do with dust. Our perspectives are interesting; how they work with life, the atmosphere and everyone else.
During this time I was listening to an audiobook by one of my favorite authors, Lysa Terkeurst. The book is called ‘It’s Not Supposed To Be This Way,’ and unlike the book version I went through it pretty fast. Otherwise, I would’ve done a review but I did get really good quotes from it.
Don’t welcome hardness of heart as easiness of life.Lysa TerKeurst- It Shouldn’t Be This Way
Often times, people shut down in order to avoid being hurt causing their heart to harden. Doing this doesn’t make life easier. Doing this does trick you into thinking it does. We’ve all been through heartbreak but shunning love doesn’t repair your heart. It creates an atmosphere that is the breeding ground for a bunch of issues that you didn’t know you were giving access to and eventually a root of bitterness is planted. The longer you encourage this stance the more it cultivates that environment and nurtures the root.
God isn’t picking on me, He’s picking me. God is far more interested in you being prepared than you being comfortable.Lysa TerKeurst- It Shouldn’t Be This Way
Not dealing with hard things just puts a veil over it. Underneath the veil, the issues are festering but because it’s covered, it tricks you into thinking it’s been handled. The more we give into that thinking we will sidestep anything that may “pull at the veil” and we get so consistent with the sidestep that it becomes a habit. Meanwhile, it’s rotting and we don’t know that it’s seeping to other areas of our lives.
The amazing thing about God is that He will go where no man is willing. He will address it. Your relationship with Him will be impacted so either you continue to sidestep and risk intimacy with Him or you realize that in order to stay connected, whatever makes you comfortable has to be uprooted so that you can be prepared to grow together.
God will give us more than we can bear but His plan is always good.Lysa TerKeurst- It Shouldn’t Be This Way
People love to say “God won’t give you more than you can bear.” That’s not true! He will and does give you more than you can bear. Let’s be honest, there’s been times in your life when you were dealing with something and whether you were/are a believer or not, you wondered if there was a God and if there was why would He allow this to happen. If you haven’t experienced this, keep living. So to rehearse and perpetuate a lie like “He won’t give you more than you can bear,” causes our faith to falter especially when we are in those situations where He absolutely does. Knowing this but also knowing that He has a plan to work it out increases my faith.
There’s a concept in construction where the contractor has to “take it down to the studs.” This is basically stating that everything has to be ripped out to create something new. You can’t be filled, if you’re already full, you can’t be renovated, if old structures are in the way and God can’t give you something new if you are holding on to the old. Yes, it may be painful. It’s when we are our most vulnerable so it’s not easy to tear down what’s familiar especially if you want it to stay but God sometimes has to reduce things to prepare you for greater. This is why we should rejoice in tribulation because He trusts us to go through but we have to trust Him to bring us out.
Not only that, but we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, 4 and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, 5 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
Placing our dust in God’s hands, he mixes it with living water the clay that’s formed can be reshapen to anything .Lysa TerKeurst- It Shouldn’t Be This Way
Wise Potter’s know that you have to add dust from previous broken vessels to the new clay. This type of dust is called Grog. The broken pieces must be shattered just right to create dust. If shattered too finely it won’t add any structure and if it’s not shattered enough it will be too course which will make the Potter’s hands bleed but when just right, it will give the new clay structure to support larger vessels and it can stand hotter fire.
Grogs are raw materials that contains high amounts of silica and alumina, and can be added to clay bodies for increased strength and/or texture.
Because grog can add extra body and support to clay, it is a common additive in clays that are used for handbuilding or sculpture, often, in large-scale artworks, it is grog that allows the clay to go large! Adding grog to clay produces a number of benefits. For one, grog will reduce the degree of shrinkage that clay experiences during drying and firing. That’s because many grogs are made up of ceramic materials that have already been fired (and then pulverized), so as a material, they’ve already done all of or most of their shrinking. Secondly, because the grog creates a more porous composition, clay with grog dries more evenly. Because of this tendency to encourage clay to dry more evenly, adding grog to a clay body can help quite a bit to prevent cracking.
So to sum it up, God will take the past “grogs” of our life and add those lesson to current experiences which gives us wisdom to have better outcomes. But more than that, it builds us so that we can stand. When we are being pulverized by life it’s just material used to build us further in the future. Everything, even dust is used for our good. Thank God for my grogs past, present and future. They truly make me better.
Hopefully this has helped you. Love you.