you may have heard paul speak of the "thorn in his flesh."
..there was given me a thorn in my flesh, a messenger of Satan, to torment me. Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it from me. But he said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness."
2 Corinthians 12 7-9
many of us have one (maybe more than one). i don't know about you, but i too have BEGGED God to take mine from me.
my thorn twists and turns, reminding me of the wounds of an abandoned little girl, that same girl now 34 years old, who still struggles to believe she is worthy of love.
i use to hate my thorn.
i was tired of being weak, because in my weakness i am the ugliest version of myself; insecure, needy, desperate, grabbing, hopeless, defeated...
but God will NOT take it. we've talked (mostly, i've cried), and He has flat out said, "no."
He has told me that though i see that my thorn makes me the ugliest version of myself, He sees that it it makes me the most beautiful version of myself.
there is always a point when i give up, and give my wounded self to Him. and there my Father God does His Daddy thing, HE AMAZES ME WITH HIS GRACE, and LOVES me. He tells me who i am, and calls me "worthy."
there is nothing like living in this LOVE here, NOTHING!
this LOVE makes me BELIEVE, DANCE, SING, SOAR!
so i will embrace my thorn, because it causes me to depend on my Father, who embraces me, with LOVE that is higher, wider, longer, and deeper than i can grasp or imagine.
"I cannot tell you how surprised I was the first time I felt my heart begin to warm.
It was real warmth, too, not imaginary, and it felt as if it were actually on fie. I was astonished at the way the heat surged up and how this new sensation brought great and unexpected comfort...
Once i realized that it came entirely from within, that this fire of love had no cause, material or sinful, but was the gift of my Maker, I was absolutely delighted, and wanted my love to be even greater. And this longing was all the more urgent because of the delightful effect and the interior sweetness which this spiritual flame fed into my soul. Before the infusion of this comfort, I had never thought that we exiles could possibly have known such warmth, so sweet was the devotion it kindled. It set my soul aglow as if a real fire was burning there."
From The Fire of Love by Richard Rolle (a.k.a. St. Richard the Hermit)