A Kaleidoscope of Color
Words from Jesus
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“We rejoice in hope of the glory of God. Not only that, but we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.”—Romans 5:2–5
I am creating a collage of your life—a collage from the broken pieces of the difficulties you face, the battles you encounter, even the mistakes you make. This collage is not meant to simply be a pretty picture or a pretty design for people to admire, but it is meant to be a conductor of My light. My light will shine through the stained glass window of your pieces, fit together into My perfect design, revealing beautiful colors, enhancing depth, adding light and beauty to the lives of those who walk in your footsteps.
Each time you face a trial of your faith, it creates a new design within the window of your life. You might feel that your life would be simpler without challenges and struggles, but without these you wouldn’t acquire the beautiful jewels of experience from which I am fashioning the collage of your life.
When others see that you carry the same shattered pieces that they have experienced, and yet these form a kaleidoscope of color, this encourages them and gives them hope. When they see that you have also battled difficult troubles, their faith is strengthened and renewed. When they see that you are still fighting and holding true to your faith, they believe that they can too. When they see that you have been touched with the same afflictions and trials and difficult battles as they have, they are reinvigorated to continue to hold on to hope.
I understand the weight of the troubles you face that at times seems to overwhelm you. I too was a man of sorrow and acquainted with grief. I know what it's like to experience sorrow and to be deeply grieved. I suffered in all points, just as you do.1 My experiences were different than yours, but if you'll look at the window of My life on Earth, you'll see the same shattered pieces as those in your stained glass window. I encountered difficulties and troubles and sufferings. I was broken, just as you feel you are breaking now. There were many shattered pieces of My life—shattered pieces of hard experiences, difficulties, trials, sufferings, temptations, sorrow and tears—which My Father transformed into a marvelous and breathtaking display of hope‚ courage, faith, and utmost love.
I promise you that there will not be one shattered piece of your life that you will not likewise find within Mine. I experienced these things so that I could shine My light of hope, courage, faith, peace, and great love upon you.
The reward of the trials and testing of this life is so much greater than the cost. As the apostle so aptly wrote‚ "For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that shall be revealed in us."2 The sufferings are not worthy to be compared to the glory and honor that I have reserved for you.
I use every piece, even these shattered pieces of your life, to design My masterpiece. Your lives are beautiful to Me‚ tough experiences and all. I know that the glass feels sharp to your hands and the shattered pieces tear at your heart, but give them to Me and I will place them in proper perspective for you. I will show you how I look at these broken pieces of your life and your situation. I will frame them within the perfect good I wish to work in your life, and in that place where all things are intricately woven together for your good, they will no longer hurt you. Once these pieces are in My hands and you learn to look at them the way I see them‚ then you can be free from the overwhelming pain you initially felt as you experience the ultimate good that this new colored gem will add to your life and service to Me.
Keep your eyes fixed on Me, as the author and finisher of your faith. As you do, you will see My light shining through your life, transforming every difficulty or ugliness into My perfect design for your life—one of beauty and grace.
Never forget that I am in you and with you, and though in this world you will have tribulation, you can be of good cheer—I have overcome the world!3
Be not weary
“Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart. And as for you, brothers and sisters, never tire of doing what is good.”—Hebrews 12:3; 2 Thessalonians 3:13
You have come to understand that trials and tests are par for the course of life. I want you to know that you can accept that understanding graciously, nobly‚ and with a spirit of faith and belief in My many promises to you that I will not allow more than you are able to bear4 and that whatever you forsake for Me and My kingdom during this life will be compensated a hundredfold.5
What often keeps you from “counting it all joy” when you face trials and tests of various sorts is the weariness you feel when faced with them.6 Weariness causes you to lose hope and faith. Weariness gives you a feeling of resignation, that it's just another day, another battle, and that the sadness or reluctance you feel in facing these is natural and understandable‚ because, "Here I am again, back in the fray‚ and who enjoys that?"
It’s easy to feel that you're tired, overwhelmed and overburdened, and you can't keep up during trying times, that it's all just too much. But the truth is that the battle and the weariness are not synonymous. Battles might be par for the course of life, but weariness doesn’t have to be.
Weariness is a wet blanket over your soul‚ smothering the flames that would otherwise burn bright and ardent, that would lift your spirit right when you need it the most. Weariness is a pollutant in the air around you, restricting your breathing and clouding your vision. Weariness is like a spiritual arthritis that seeps into your joints, causing discomfort, an achiness and a feeling of being old, washed up‚ and unable to bend and keep up with the challenges of life.
If you want to know how to count it all joy and how to even glory in your trials and sufferings, whether long- or short-term, if you want to know how you can face the challenges of life unhindered by this burden of weariness, let My Word and My promises fill your heart‚ mind, and spirit with joy inexpressible.7 Let My peace that surpasses all understanding guard your mind and heart.8
Originally published March 2006. Adapted and republished July 2016.
Read by Jerry Paladino. Music by John Listen.
1 Isaiah 53:3–4; Hebrews 4:15.
2 Romans 8:18.
3 John 16:33.
4 1 Corinthians 10:13.
5 Matthew 19:29.
6 James 1:2.
7 1 Peter 1:8.
8 Philippians 4:7.