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Friends in Christ Weekly Message
September 7, 2000

Bliss is lasting; pain is passing... It is not God's will that we should linger over pain, but that we should pass over it quickly to find joy that lasts and never ends.
Julian of Norwich

Julian of Norwich (1342-c. 1429) was a mystic and probably the first woman to write a book in English. When she was 30, she became seriously ill, and actually received the Last Rites. Two days later, she received a series of 15 visions over a period of 11 hours, after which she recovered almost immediately. The above quote is an excerpt from her writings about her visions.

The revelation above came in the midst of great pain. God showed Julian not to focus on the pain, but on bliss and joy. God led her to write down her revelations, because they are for all of us, not just for Julian.

I know that, for myself, when I am in pain my tendency is to focus on the pain and how miserable I feel. Instead, I should focus on the goodness of God and the joy God gives me that is eternal, while the pain is temporary. If I succeed in doing this, the pain loses its power over me. It becomes a passing thing of little consequence compared to God's love for me and the blessings God bestows on me.

There are probably things in your life that you find painful, whether that pain be physical or emotional. Do you focus on that pain or the love of God who seeks to bring you joy?

Bill Samuel

©2000 Friends in Christ, Inc.

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Document last modified on Saturday, 27-Dec-2003 09:45:50 EST