Thursday, May 8, 2008

Discuss . . .

Alternate Titles: Damaged People Are Dangerous * Or Talk Amongst Yourselves

Some quotes to start a discussion:

. . . And we rejoice in the hope of the glory of God. 3 Not only so, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; 4 perseverance, character; and character, hope. 5 And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us.
BIBLE, Romans 5: 2-5 (NIV)

And a different outlook

Those who are lucky should hide. They should be grateful. They should hope the days of wrath will not visit their home. They should run to protect all that is theirs, and pity their neighbour when the horror strikes. But quietly, and from a distance.
DAMAGE, by Josephine Hart (a non-Christian book)

It is possible not all of my readers are Christian but likely many of you have felt hardship in your life or perhaps you are in that small majority that has never experienced hardship and somewhat wishes for it in order to grow.

From my own experience suffering sometimes pulls you closer to God, sometimes pushes you away but is never enjoyable. Sure you can come out a stronger person on the other end but you change and/or damaged and for most of us change can be scary.
Another favorite quote of mine is:
“Damaged people are dangerous. They know they can survive.” – DAMAGE, Josephine Hart*
Someone once said to me “Don’t trust that it will not happen again, but trust that you can handle it if it does.” As a Christian I add ‘with the help of God’.

What are your thoughts on suffering?
Does this topic make you uncomfortable? If so I'll give you an alternate topic:
In the immortal words of Linda Richmond (Mike Myers in the SNL sketch CoffeeTalk)

Talk amongst yourselves. Here’s a topic: The peanut is neither a pea or a nut. Discuss. [she holds it all in] There. I feel better.

If you have no idea what coffee talk is watch this video:

Favorite Coffee Talk Topics:
(Taken from Winkipedia)
• "Ralph Fiennes is spelled neither rafe nor fines. Discuss."
• "Rhode Island is neither a road nor is it an island. Discuss."
• "The Thigh Master is neither a thigh nor a master. Discuss."
• "The Mormon Tabernacle Choir is neither Mormon nor a tabernacle nor a choir. Discuss."


Alex said...

I recall my dad wishing that we, as kids, lived through the war so we knew what hardship was. I am party to the camp that celebrates not suffering, and I never feel the need for it in order to grow. I feel if are in constant need of growth we can never be happy and find ourselves on an everlasting journey. Why ask for suffering? I don't understand this mentality.


Dan said...

This may come off badly but as many times as I am uplifted by that passage, there are times, too often, that I think . . .

Why God, why this suffering that produces pain, pain that breaks me down bit by bit, brokenness that causes weakness, weakness failure, and failure, despair.

Of course, then I hear Marilla Cuthbert in my head "To despair, is to turn you back on God." Good ole, Marilla.

Tan said...

I know I'm late here and no one will read this but am I missing something...isn't a peanut a nut? And isn't the Mormon Tabernacle choir really a choir? Please educate me.

Tan said...

Wait a second, I've answered my own question: "Athough a nut in the culinary sense, in the botanical sense the fruit of the peanut plant is a woody, indehiscent legume and not a nut. The word pea describes the edible seeds of many other legumes in the Fabaceae family, and in that sense, a peanut is a kind of pea."

Good ol' wikipedia. But the Mormon Tabernacle choir really is a choir! Again, just talkin' to myself.