Necessary Losses?

What is more, I consider everything a loss compared to the surpassing greatness of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them rubbish, that I may gain Christ. (Philippians 3:8)

I have heard the term “necessary losses”.   Paul said to lose is to gain.  What an amazing statement!  To consider the loss of all things …. All things … and consider them rubbish.  I look to my losses:  My mobility, freedom to come and go as I please, the loss of many, many a dream, the loss of freedom from pain, the loss of my job.  Though not connected to my illness (or perhaps at the root of some of it), the loss of my only daughter.  Loss, after loss after loss. It can be very challenging to understand it as leading to gain.

I once read a poem, whose author I do not know it, that said that God can not pour out His blessings into hands already full.  I must trust God that all these losses are “necessary losses” and that they are ultimately for my good, though I often feel like that disciplined child who is angry at their father for taking something away for their own good.  Watching a toddler who has grabbed a knife comes to mind.  The toddler screams “MINE!” as the potentially hurtful thing is taken away – and taken because the parent knows best.

How different my attitude can be from that of Paul.  I need to look to his example. A man with physical problems, persecuted, hated, a man who suffered, and yet willing to count it all as “rubbish” because He came to know Christ more and more.

Father, In those times when I doubt and complain, I pray you help me to remember Paul, and all those who have gone before me suffering loss after loss, but ultimately – gaining You.  Amen and Amen.  So be it, Lord!

From the 2011 Archives

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