December 13, 2016 - Karen Baldridge

Luke 2:4-7

Just as Mary struggled through hardship because of the gift she was given in Jesus Christ the Lord, I suffered and will always suffer hardship. However, because God is good, I have been given a gift in the midst of tragedy.

A beautiful July morning, wind in our faces, on a two lane road in the southern California desert ended in death and dismemberment. Nothing could have prepared me for the death of my husband and the loss of my leg that day. The prayers said that morning before embarking on our journey would go unanswered according to my finite mind.

Out of loss came a gift that moves me forward in my life and helps others move forward in theirs. Through faith, God has gifted me with mental and physical strength, endurance and determination (I call it pure stubbornness.) Just by living my life as normally as possible and serving others at every opportunity instead of focusing on can’t and giving up on the hard things, I am gifted with the opportunity to encourage others to reach for the potential God has in front of them. Setting an example is a motivator.

It is a gift that I am on two feet every day. This blesses my family because I am able to take care of grandchildren, help in the house, and make their lives less stressful.

Just as a new pine tree cannot grow without mature trees catching fire, we do not know what gifts God will give us until we have walked through the fire.

Grasp your gifts.

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