Opportunities to Practice Virtues

Friends, this week is a bit rough for me, with some lower back pain, which is why I’m late on posting this week. However, I’m determined not to completely miss the week, as I’ve posted something every week for the past six years, so here I am, aches and all.

This will be short and will not contain pictures, because I’m conserving as much energy as possible for my tutoring job these days. I’ll try to get at least one graphic done for you next time.
While I’ve been in pain, I’ve been reading and listening to music and thinking on verses of Scripture. Because of these things and the blessings of parents who understand back pain and are willing to lend me a helping hand when I need it, my heart has been light, my spirits lifted, and my thoughts mostly positive.
I say mostly because there have been black moments where the pain seemed too big to conquer. But then the Holy Spirit reminds me that Jesus is bigger than all my pain. He has suffered more, so He can take the bulk of the burden from me. It’s like He Himself said once: “My yoke is easy and My burden is light.” (Matthew 11:30 HCSB) That verse has held me steady in the worst of the annoyance that has been this trial.
It’s also been helpful for my perspective to take this as an opportunity to practice contentment. Yep, like Paul, I am attempting to learn to “be content in whatever circumstances I am.” (Philippians 4:11 HCSB) In verse twelve, Paul said he knew “both how to have a little, and … how to have a lot.” For me this week, that verse is paraphrased as “I know both how to have a little pain and a lot of pain.” I am happy — yes, happy! — to learn how to find positive thoughts and contentment no matter what number on any scale my pain level hits.
May the Lord be glorified, because He is good and ever present, in good times and in bad.
What virtue are you finding opportunities to practice this week?

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