Thursday, May 17, 2012

Hunger Games

OK, finally reading the Hunger Games trilogy.  I am about 1/3 of the way through Catching Fire.  It is a very interesting series.  The story is very similar to the fall of the Roman Empire, in my opinion.  I can also see parallels to the condition of the U.S.A. today.

In the Grinder

            Consider the river stone.  It is a thing of beauty, so smooth and silky feeling.  It is difficult to imagine that it was once a rough, jagged thing.  Over the years, possibly even centuries, the rough, jaggedness was eroded by water and friction of other stones.  You could say a river is a slow moving grinder, one whose task is not measured in minutes but years.
            Life is a similar thing.  Often times we feel as if we are in the grinder as well.  Hardships, trials, just ordinary things of life often wear us down.  I like to think that God is using the things of life to make us something beautiful as well.  By his grace he can use the awful, burdensome things in life to make our lives a thing of beauty all to his glory and honor.  David put it this way in Psalm 30:

I cried out to you, Lord.  I begged my Lord for mercy: “What is to be gained by my spilled blood, by my going down into the pit?  Does dust thank you?  Does it proclaim your faithfulness?  Lord, listen and have mercy on me!  Lord, be my helper!”  You changed my mourning into dancing.  You took off my funeral clothes and dressed me up in joy so that my whole being might sing praises to you and never stop.  Lord, my God, I will give thanks to you forever.

            As we begin this series on the giants David faced we will be looking at his trials and struggles and hear his own words as reflected in the Psalms.  His problems are similar to our own.  May we be like him, ready to face our own short-comings and willing to hand our difficulties over to the One Lord who can give us “beauty for ashes, the oil of joy in place of mourning, and a mantle of praise in place of encouragement.”  [Isaiah 61:3]