Difficulties and friendly forces

Rowley Regis woke up to snow this morning, it’s the 16th April and yesterday white Cherry Blossoms were filling up our senses and putting the spring in our steps. Yesterday, St Giles churchyard was a carpet of daffodils. This morning the daffodils are lost under a white carpet of snow.

Life is like that, one day full of hopeful expectation, the next it brings the unexpected and unanticipated difficulties ~ like the recent one, at St Giles with damaged gas pipe work and loss of heating in church; but with the Lord’s help we got through.

I suppose, with many others, I find sudden, unexpected difficulties irksome at the time but later looking back on them, I can see that in spite of them or maybe because if them(?) something good, something better has come into being.

As a teenager, I shared office duties with a widowed lady in her 50’s with a fascinating hobby. She threw pots, fashioned beautiful objects from lumps of clay and then spent more precious hours painting them by hand. I have always admired those who can create beautiful things for their patience and perseverance, lumps of clay on a wheel, now there’s a challenge.

My own patience is often challenged by difficult, irksome things, I woke up one morning this week to a vivid picture of clay doing its own things in the hands of its potter. Not a pretty sight. A fine mess in fact.

“Someone is throwing a wobbly,” I thought and smiled to myself, sending up a quick arrow prayer that, that person wasn’t going to be me. I knew there was something particularly hard to cope with on my personal agenda that day and that my patience would be tested.

As it turned out, all turned out well for both task and patience.

What is required of us is that we love the difficult and learn to deal with it.
In the difficult are the friendly forces, the hands that work on us.
(Rainer Maria Rilke)

The Lord’s hands, are potters hands, skilled, adept in fashioning beautiful work in our difficult times. He never, never throws wobblies.

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