Today is my first “Spiritual Sunday” contribution. Charlotte over at Charlotte’s Weblog invited me a few weeks ago to participate. I’m glad I did! So from now on Walking on Sunshine will be a part of Spiritual Sundays. I encourage you to head over to their blog to take a look at all the other wonderful contributions. Since I have quite a few new followers and readers, I thought I’d post something I wrote a few months ago. Enjoy!
A Bouquet of Thorns
My God, I have never thanked Thee for my thorn! I have thanked Thee a thousand times for my roses, but never once for my thorn. Teach me the glory of the cross I bear. Teach me the value of my thorns. Show me that I have climbed to Thee by the path of pain. Show me that my tears have made my rainbow.
—George Matheson (1842–1906)
I read a quote the other day that just seemed to jump out at me. I have never really thought of my pain as something to be thankful for. Or to even think of it as a “Bouquet of Thorns” as the above quote suggests.
I did some research on why roses have thorns. Thorns protect the rose. They protect it from things like wild animals who want to devour the rose. Thorns protect and yet also perfect the rose.
I particularly love the definition…thorns enable a rose to grasp on and climb higher than other flowers to get needed sunshine. I like to think that as Christians when we’re experiencing thorns in our lives, we need to push everything out of our way and search higher, reaching for the only one who can help us…our Savior.
I’m sure there are many out there who have thorns in their lives…things they don’t really want to deal with…maybe bearing them in silence. Shouldn’t we begin to thank God for the strength He gives us when we these thorns appear in our lives?
It’s so easy to be thankful when there are no problems weighing us down. But we need to enjoy not only the “roses” in our lives but also the thorns that help to protect the roses. It is when we are going through hard times that we truly begin to experience the comfort only our Lord can give us. In our weakness, pain, or circumstance we come to depend on God even more; often falling to our knees crying out for help.
How can I thank God for this “thorn?” I’m not sure I can yet. But I do know that I have thanked Him for all the many blessings He has given me and that I need to embrace this thorn and be thankful for the knowledge that maybe this thorn will help me to realize how much more I need to lean on Him.
So let’s take a little time today to be thankful for the thorns in our lives…without them we wouldn’t have the beautiful roses.
2 Corinthians 12:8-10…Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.