Consider it a sheer gift, friends, when tests and challenges come at you from all sides. You know that under pressure, your faith-life is forced into the open and shows its true colors. So, don’t try to get out of anything prematurely. Let it do its work, so you become mature and well-developed, not deficient in any way.
James 1:2-4 MSG
I have been reading Lisa Bevere’s book “Girls with Swords”. She makes a profound statement about life. “Life is not like a visit to the massage therapist, where you get to choose the level of intensity you enjoy. When hardship strikes, no one asked if you would like your pressure, light, or deep.
As I have encountered folks and asked them to sign my prayer quilts many of them find themselves in pressure-filled situations. I remember a beautiful young woman sitting sipping coffee at a table across the way. I remember thinking how young and beautiful she was. She seemed lost in her cup of coffee, with thoughts only she knew. Then could there be a brazen thief in our midst?!
Here’s what happened. My friend and I were enjoying a pleasant afternoon at a local coffee shop. When the young woman who was sitting at a table across the way asked us if we would watch her laptop while she went to the restroom. We were glad to oblige. After she had been gone for several minutes another young woman comes to her table and begins to eye her belongings very intently. This unusual behavior caused my friend and I to become VERY suspicious. We began to watch her intently! Just as we both were going to spring into action, the laptop lady, squealed as she rounded the corner! Suspicious young woman begins to squeal also! Just as my friend and I were about to squeal for the police the two women embrace!
The four of us had a good laugh and we all became instant friends! Of course, those two were asked to sign my quilt, and they gladly did. Like so many of my quilt signers these two were facing trials. One was moving a great distance away. I’ve moved numerous times in my lifetime not once have the moves gone easily or as expected. Something always happens! The other one was struggling with starting a family. I know this struggle. Members of my own family have faced that struggle. It is not merely a struggle, as time passes the pressure is on. That biological clock starts ticking louder and louder. The would-be grandparents ask questions they shouldn’t, or they don’t ask at all. Sometimes both are hurtful.
My friend and I listened intently as these two young women laid the concerns of their hearts before us. I pray kind compassionate listeners helped relieve some of the pressures they were facing. The promise of others lifting prayers for them brought smiles and hints of tears.
Written by Susan