Trials are Good


It's sometimes very difficult 

for us to understand

the wisdom and the love behind 

the things that God has planned.


But we couldn’t have the rainbow

If we didn’t have the rain;

We wouldn’t know the pleasure

If we never tasted pain.


We wouldn’t love the sunrise

If we hadn't felt the night;

And we wouldn’t know our weakness

If we hadn't sensed God's might.


We couldn't have the springtime

or the yellow daffodil

if we hadn't experienced

the winter's frosty chill.


And though the brilliant sunshine

is something Gad has made

He knew too much could parch our souls

so he created shade.


So God's given us a balance:

Enough joys to keep us glad,

Enough tears to keep us humble,

Enough good to balance bad.


And if you'll trust in him you'll see

Though yesterday brought sorrow,

The clouds will part and down will bring

 A happier tomorrow.

Author's Notes/Comments: 

Life is good

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Mediocre Faith

I was sitting at my place, alone, thinking about my life. I was pouring over the recent turn of events. Recently, I separated from the comfortable place of employment that provided me so many luxuries for the previous two years. And that’s what Marianna Toyota was, comfort. I knew that I had more expectations for myself, but it was easy , good money, and comfortable. That cushion was no longer there. And then I heard something….a big bang at my front door.
Calamity knocked on my front door and I looked to evade it so I ran to the back door. That wretched calamity then used the key. So I was stuck “in the middle of it” (Issaac Carree, In The Middle of It) I have always said that you should smile. But…smile, how can you smile in the midst of a storm? And if someone actually has the gall to tell you to smile, your first reaction would be to say, “easier said than done.” Then I would say, “practice what you preach.” And on this night I would learn how to smile in the middle of it.
I know that doubt and fear are like a toenail fungi. Hard to get rid of, in a matter of fact, it’s so hard to get rid of that you may even just say, “ it’ll be alright.” But it is inevitably still there. Every chance it gets ,doubt creeps in…sometimes unnoticed. Unnoticed doubt is worst than realized doubt because you never know the seeds of doubt and fear have been planted. So you continue to move forward in life, dismissing minor problems as they appear. Each time those problems may have a different face, but they are the same problem. Either way I dismiss those seeds of fear, ignore them until one day I realize that those seeds have matured, been fertilized and turned into a full blown Tree of Doubt. And this doubt has decided to take temporary residence in my living room, lol…I learned quickly that this is the storm.
So what do you do when you find yourself in the midst of your own neglected fears? How do you handle what you have neglected to really entertain, because it wasn’t that serious? Now the not so serious has compounded with the now and it has me boxed in. In other words, I used Marianna Toyota as temporary comfort that would keep my fears at bay. I mean I don’t know if anyone really feels me. This is tough to share. But my biggest fear is being mediocre. That’s what I fear the most. I know that God has blessed me exceptionally well. I am very blessed. He has given me several talents and to think that I would possibly misuse those talents is my biggest fear. Now that my comfort job is no longer there, those seeds of mediocrity begin to resurface with new found vigor and they have grown a lot. Actually, it’s like they are now on steroids. Like those seeds have been shooting up Miralce-Gro. And now they are real. Marianna Toyota gave me the opportunity to handle things. I was in control, and by working there I could see a direct line to overcome my fears of being mediocre. But I had to learn that faith is only as strong as what or whom its entrusted to.

You see, when things are going well, it’s easy for me to shrug off doubt. I will continue moving forward. And I am making amazing progress through life, now I am at mile 370 and those little seeds of problems are back at mile marker 42. I can place my hands on my progress and how I am defeating my own fears. It’s a good feeling. They can’t catch me because I am too far ahead in life. Or as we most commonly think, we have outgrown those fears. Yeah, I thought I had outgrown them or passed them until my life took a proverbial “u-turn.” As I was in the u-turn I could see a familiar problem in the distance. As I was backtracking at marker 250, that problem was getting bigger. And obviously, the closer I got, the bigger those problems seemed to get. Wow, those seed that were minor distant problems just a month ago have really grown. I thought it was the distance effect at first. You know the notion that things far off seem smaller. Well it’s true in a sort of a metaphorical sense as well. Those minor seeds of doubt and fear are now in my face and they clearly have grown. Maybe that’s an understatement, these problems are staring down at me and they are bigger than I can handle. To put in perspective, they are now world class, World Book of Guinness Prize winning, Jackson County Fair First Place, Blue Ribbon, Regional qualifying award winning crops. They are big…gargantuan. Or at least they seem that way. But like in Texas and when you are on your back, everything is bigger. I was about to embark on a mental and spiritual lesson about faith. Faith is the trusting in something that is unseen. At this point, I couldn’t see my solution all I could see was this problem that was staring down at me.
Either way, the truth is…problem, you no longer bother me. That just came out, like my ego stated that for me. But in all reality and honesty Mr. Problem, Mrs. Insecurity you are the thing in life that I most fear. I am terrified that you will come to pass. But I am going to handle you. To solve this problem, I started with a two pronged front… starting with me and ending with you(the problem).
To understand my solution you have to understand that I have faith. I really do, but this problem has taught me another deeper dimension of my faith. As a child, I learned at an early age that faith was paramount. You see, my soul, my root, and my faith is anchored in the Lord. But before anyone says anything or thinks critical, yes I have branches. And I will truthfully state, and for the sanctity of this piece, my branches have strayed far from my roots. They have been to foreign and vile places. Some of the leaves on the outermost branches still try to keep seasonal residence in those foul places. But fortunately, we have learned that if a branch is bad, it can be trimmed or cut off. However, my root is good! So those branches which need to be trimmed have been, and still are being trimmed. Unfortunately, bad branches keep on showing up. Either way those branches keep getting trimmed, and my salvation is that my root is deeply potted on good soil. That gives me my only peace. That seals me, and makes me okay in my eyes, right now, for me. But as for me, I know that I have to not rely on my own understanding. I have to truly trust that God has a plan for me. I cannot rely on my wisdom, my knowledge, understanding, or any of my devices. To defeat this foe, I have to let go and let God. I have to use real faith. Otherwise, it will continue to resurface. And the next time, if it’s bigger…well I think I want to nip it in the bud now.
I was easy, but the hard part comes when I have to handle those problems. These problems have branches too. But trimming these branches seems to do me no service, because evidently that’s what I have been doing all along. I have been suppressing those fears and doubts and pushing the branches out of my face. I would rather push my fears to the side but now they are closer to reality than they have ever been. And I can’t fathom those fears being a real part of my life. I can see my reflection in what never had a face…just a hint of ill fated possibilities. I can see me, being subpar. With all of my ambitions, the situation is telling me that I am going to be a loser. These problems are bigger than me, bigger than I can handle so I resort to my life manual.

2 Timothy 1:7 Tells me, “For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.” This scripture lit an internal fire, infuriated me, gives me power, and puts this problem in perspective. In a matter of fact, Mr. Problem and Mrs. Insecurity don’t get me started on you. You have no basis or grounds to be significant in my life. You are a liar, a cheat, and I will not whimper or shrink with the notion of cowardice. I am more than a conqueror because my roots are deeper than the seeds you have tried to plant. I just get confused sometimes, but my life manual always puts me back in perspective. Do you realize who I am? I am a direct descendant of royalty. I am loved by The Most High. Do you even know that He knows my name and every single hair in my head? He loves me so much that he sent his only begotten son, a perfect lamb who lived the perfect life to die for an imperfect mess like me. I am loved. And by His blood I am justified. Check this, I am justified…just-if-I’d been perfect. Just-if-I’d had not been a vagabond, curser, evil vindictive, foul mouthed, mutt of a person. But by his blood I am just-if-I’d. So you, once gargantuan, mammoth-like existence… have been uprooted. What seemed like an impossible feat has been done with amazing ease, minimal effort. Call me Danny and you are Goliath because you just got slain. Simply put, my faith is so deeply rooted that its depth trumps your surface plantation. Back to hell because I now see you for whom you are. You have manifested yourself as part of my life, when you are nothing of me. There is no weapon that can prosper against me because I am covered under the blood. With God, who, what, when or where shall I fear you?

To summarize, my faith in Gods divine plan for me is greater than any seed of doubt that can ever be planted. Life offers doubts all the fertilizer it needs. Tough times simply provide the optimum environment for doubt. But I must rely on my faith, the fact that God has it under control. Why should I worry?
So truthfully, in the midst of despair, in the midst of trials and my tribulations…no joke, I smile. I am not perfect, but I know that His love is. I am not good, I am bad. I try, and try, but I seem to always fail. Paul spoke of this battle, in I think Romans. And the fact that he went through the same warfare gives me a little comfort. But I am totally comforted by the fact that God loves me so much and is willing to fight my battles. In Mathew 11:28 Jesus tells his disciples, “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” There is no explanation for the comfort that I have knowing that my battles and problems have already been addressed. I just have to exercise faith. It’s clearly up to me whether I utilize the tools and accept the solution he has given. I am truly blessed.

Praise and all glory are to God. Thank you Lord for this inspiration and I pray that it touches someone who is struggling with a similar seemingly insurmountable problem. Thank you for the inspiration, and for that I give you the dedication. This is nothing of my own devices but of your divine word that resonates in my heart and brings me daily peace. Lord I know that no problem is too big or small for you, and for your consideration again I say thank you. Thank you Lord for the courage to share this with someone, or anyone because I know that someone needs to hear this word of inspiration just as it came upon me. I know that someone is in the midst of their storm, facing their problems, but Father you said that you would never forsake me and you cannot lie. So I am just standing on your word and leaning on your promises. Thank you for everything that you have given me and I ask that you use me to the fullest of my potential. I ask that you never let my seeds of doubt, and fear of mediocrity consume me. I know that I can never be mediocre in your eyes. I will always be special. And my Father, my God, my All, Your love is all I need. I ask that you show me how to love like you love. Not just those who love me, but teach me how to especially love those who wish me harm, who only wish to see me fail. Father, teach me especially to love them.

In Jesus name, Amen.

Elliott J. Curry 10/27/11

Author's Notes/Comments: 

I hope this moves you to have a lil faith!

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A Dilemma For The Individual

A contrast of thought
A dilemma unspoken
To find oneself
Do we want it or not?

Are we searching something feared
Or are we finding satisfaction?
To find oneself
It's a question unanswered

We search with help
We search alone
To find oneself
Can we own our hope?

Once we have found that being
Stopped searching because we know
To accept oneself
Is a feat everyone is learning

Those around us die
We know who they were
To accept oneself
In the moment, to try

Every one is some one
People know who we are
To accept oneself
To know I'm just one

Be the best possible in trial
Though i don't know myself, someone does
To BECOME oneself
To know, to accept, without defile.

Author's Notes/Comments: 

I wrote this in a graveyard and didn't think much of it when I finished. But i found this recently and I think it's pretty meaningful

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