God's Amazing Gifts: Being Misunderstood

The apostle Paul shared an experence that grieved him deeply in a personal letter to the church at Corinth. Although we do not have any idea what his thorn was, we do know that God refused to grant Paul's request that the Lord remove it from him.

Being a curious person by nature, I would love to know the exact details of what Paul struggled with. But I am also grateful that the Lord has recorded Paul's dilemma in the vaguest of terms because I can then find comfort in my own struggle with my own thorn.

My thorn?

Caring far too much what other people think. Nothing wrings my heart or sends me into a funk more than believing that a pure motive of mine has been misunderstood. I used to think I was just sensitive by nature and took things too much to heart. The Lord has consistently made me face this struggle I have with wanting to please other people. My obsession with my reputation has, at times, been an idol. I have cared more about being liked than standing up for truth. I have closed my mouth when I had an opportunity to share about the hope my relationship with Christ brings me simply because I have dreaded the other person's response to me. I have grieved to the point of it being unhealthy and obsessive as I have worried about offending a friend or acquaintance. 

I will continue to struggle with being misunderstood. I don't think I will ever wake up one day with a thick skin. But I can offer my humiliation and hurt to the Lord. I have a choice to continue doing and saying things that I know He would want me to or caving to the praise of others. 

I have learned much from this most undesired gift that Jesus has given to me. I know these lessons will be lifelong. But the woman whom this video clip talks about in the gospel of Mark brings me much hope. I pray that my life will be worthy of a commendation of Christ and will be a lasting memorial as 
hers was. 

Merry Christmas and let's keep serving Him, no matter how we are misjudged!

To keep me from becoming conceited because of these surpassingly great revelations, there was given me a thorn in my flesh, a messenger of Satan, to torment me. 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.”   2 Corinthians 12:7-9