Inside Job

She was beautiful.  The first time I saw her, my heart hiccuped.  Thick dark brown hair, eyes deep and full of life, she would always say hi and then smile a shy beguiling smile.  She was also sick, something that the doctors could not pinpoint.   Young and smart, she should have had the world at her fingertips.  Instead she watched her late teens and early twenties waste away from some  strange unknown illness. It broke my heart.

I was praying that the Lord would heal her and make her whole.  Suddenly I realized that wholeness comes from within.  She can be whole, complete, and happy without being well.  How many kids – how many adults – are destroying a whole body because they have an unwholesome spirit?    Make me whole (happy, healthy), is really a prayer about the spiritual.

Ever been in love?  Ever won a big prize, got that promotion, bought a car, house, or something fantastic?  What a feeling.  You are untouchable.  Some crazy driver cuts you off, you’re late, someone hates you – you don’t care, your spirit is on fire.  When the inside is good everything is good, even when it’s bad.

Ever been down?  Even though you’re healthy, or people love you, or you live in a nice place, or your future is bright, it is all poisoned by your pain.  When the inside is bad everything is bad, even if it’s good.

Cameron Strandberg, Fitzhugh Newspaper. Jasper, AlbertaI understand how that young girl feels.  I went through a long period where my marriage was excruciating.  It was like a sand storm raging around me, a million jagged grains stripping away my flesh.  But something strange was also going on at the same time.  While the outside was swallowed in the blackest midnight, there was something deeper in my soul that lit the darkness like a forest fire roaring up a mountainside.  

The Apostle Paul says, that is why we never give up. Though our bodies are dying, our spirits are being renewed every day.  He says, we have this light shining in our hearts.  We are pressed on every side by troubles, but we are not crushed. We are perplexed, but not driven to despair.  How else can we rejoice like he says we should, to live in a peace that makes no sense?  By all rights we should be in turmoil.


I lose my temper!  Not at the people and things around me, I get up early in the morning and pour out my anger and frustration at God.  I do it on paper.  There is no point filtering how you feel, God knows the truth.  You might as well be honest.   Moses did the same thing. Moses was so upset he told God to just kill him.  I laughed out loud when I read it.   Keep reading and see how God responds.  God does not get upset, he says to just watch him work.  Once again Moses says he isn’t enough and God answers, but I AM.

Do it daily.  No matter how late I stay up, I get up an extra hour early to pray.   I walk in full of poison and walk out at peace with the world.  I even have love to give to the ones causing me pain.   If you point your finger at something or someone outside you and say that it must change for you to be happy, you will always be a victim to the things around you.   God buoyed my spirits up over the hurt and worry, and he did it without changing a thing externally.

(photo courtesy of Cameron Strandberg, Fitzhugh Newspaper. Jasper, Alberta.)