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Reflections on the path of the disciple

by Lorraine Taylor  
3/22/2021 / Christian Living


Under challenging circumstances, in adverse situations, and in trying experiences, Trusting God is often all we can do.  For me, the 'whys' do not matter.

Responding to the invitation to draw close to a more profound, more expansive comprehension and understanding of Father's heart is my 'need.' 

God’s love is revealed to individuals and a community of believers in heartache, loss, suffering, and pain.

Suffering brings us face to face with the unfamiliar and the unknown. Our response is allowing the Spirit to flourish despite circumstances and situations we face that we do not like. Complex events often press us beyond human capacity to endure and into the mysteries of the supernatural.

In seasons where we are unable, we can be mindful that we are rooted and grounded in the life of Jesus. This indwelling life is always working and moving in those hidden spaces, reorienting, redirecting, and reforming a mindset attentive in responding 'Yes' to the voice of Abba God. 

Transformation results when in the suffering; my response, your response, and our collective reaction is listening and hearing the loving voice.

This heavenly love is being uncovered and unwrapped in crisis, in tragedy, in stress, in frustrations, in annoyances, in disturbances, in conflict, and amid the unanticipated challenges we face as human beings.  

The disciple of Christ individually and collectively listens to the inner voice of spirit-being-love. The path then becomes learning to 'let go' of 'self-reliance' (knowledge, beliefs, methods, ingenuity, security, comfort, friends) and lending permission in allowing the activity of the Spirit to separate what is true and what is deception.

Patience is the ability to accept or tolerate problems or suffering without becoming annoyed or anxious.

Meanwhile, perseverance refers to continued steady belief or efforts despite discouragement or difficulty.

The two most powerful warriors are patience and time. Leo Tolstoy 

A deepening of patience and perseverance are virtues developed over time as we learn to respond to the voice of Love -- a never-ending process of the Spirit in us whose activity is regenerating, sanctifying, and reconciling us to the Lifeforce and source of this Spirit-being-love whose love is intertwined tightly within humanity's fabric.

The irritations, frustrations, and annoyances I, you, and we experience, when forces beyond our control come against us, will be transformed into patience and the ability to persevere as we co-participate in an intra-dependence upon the union of the Triune Godhead who has fully provided and deposited inside us all we need to live godly lifestyles.

 2 Peter 1:3 NRSV

His divine power has given us everything needed for life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness.

The disciple's path is discovered within the community when we experience pain and suffering personally or in another's life.

When we can acknowledge, accept, and allow the truth of the circumstances, along with the emotional results, Abba utilizes these as raw ingredients in the continual transformation of mind, attitude, and heart by imparting a galvanizing Grace.

 

Romans 5:3-5 NRSV

 And not only that. We also boast in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not disappoint us, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit that has been given to us.

 

Prayer

Father guide us nearer, deeper, wider, and broader into the center of your heart that we might allow your love to flow through our humanness and shine light and hope in the suffering. 

Lorraine Taylor lives in Upstate NY with her husband. Her first book: Hope Rises from a Shattered Innocenceï will be released around the summer of 2021.

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