Abstract: God, in his grace, gives us the opportunity to grow spiritually through the trauma we receive. His glory is manifested if we obediently love Him through the dark tunnel of trials like afflict the Romanians in Romania. Day after day, our decision must be to let him carry our lone self and to love God and our neighbor.

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The Dark Lonely Tunnel of Trials

“You shall love your neighbor as yourself.”
---Jesus Christ (Matthew 19:19)

It is necessary to the happiness of a man that he be mentally faithful to himself.”
---Thomas Paine
“Never violate the sacredness of your individual self-respect”---Theodore Parker

It takes no spiritual giant to deduce the correct response. It’s really a matter of getting back to the basics. Love your neighbor. Respect yourself. Of course, I proposed the person for promotion and the next day my position was “downsized”. The way they did it was traumatizing. My accusers could not say a single word against me and the university was not interested in investigating the case. Perhaps as you read this, you would like say to me, “It had nothing to do with you. Someone had to be downsized and you were the junior member of the team.” You may be right, but two lawyers who saw all the documents woke me from my naiveté. They had seen the patterns before and correctly guessed at what had happened and when. One told me that it was so clearly racism that he wouldn’t even charge me if we lost. But, my proving myself right would cost me my career. My decision was to react with mercy. I have received no glory for my decision and even six years later I still am questioned with suspicion why my position ended so quickly after it was created. Truly, much as my earthly self would prefer to receive some benefit, God was the sole recipient of the glory.

This is all very easy to write now, but it was a major trauma for me then. Any time I get called into my boss’s office I go through something very similar to Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome. Not wanting to stir up your sympathy, I’ll simply tell you that this was one of the darkest periods of my life. Reality hit me that all that I was told by my parents about the benefits of honesty and hard work was rubbish. The support of two bosses, one human resource agent, all my goals being met, and written policies and guidelines could not prevent the end from coming. It was like being on a slide down a dark tunnel, moving ever so slowly but uncontrollably away from daylight and into unknown pitch black. I was entering Phase 3, when I realized that I was totally unprepared and powerless. Only God would be able to carry me and I wished He would carry me Home.

Point of Grace
Are you at the end of your rope? Are you feeling that you must violate your self-respect and God-respect. Take heart. You may not sense it, but you are in a spiritual upward spiral of glory.

© Aramus Crane 2001

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