A Bouquet of Thorns?

Thursday, December 4, 2008

I read a quote today that just jumped out at me...

My God, I have never thanked Thee for my thorn! I have thanked Thee a thousand times for my roses, but never once for my thorn. Teach me the glory of the cross I bear. Teach me the value of my thorns. Show me that I have climbed to Thee by the path of pain. Show me that my tears have made my rainbow.
—George Matheson (1842–1906)

How ironic that I read this today when I had my 6 month visit with my spine doctor. Today, the doctor told me that surgery will unlikely take away my pain, wow, what a thought...I was a little sad about dealing with this pain, but then I read the above quote.

Thorns protect the rose. They protect if from things like wild animals who want to devour the rose. Thorns enable a rose to grasp on and climb higher than other flowers to get needed sunshine. Thorns protect and also perfect the rose.

I'm sure there are many out there who have thorns in their lives...things they don't really want to deal with...maybe bearing them in silence. Shouldn't we begin to thank God for the strength He gives us when we have thorns in our lives?

It's so easy to be thankful when there are no problems weighing us down. But we need to enjoy not only the "roses" in our lives but also the thorns that help to protect the roses. It is when we are going through hard times that we truly begin to experience the comfort that only our Lord can give us. In our weakness, pain, or circumstance we come to depend on God even more; often falling to our knees.

How can I thank God for this "thorn?" I'm not sure I can yet. But I do know that I have thanked Him for all the many blessings He has given me and that I need to embrace this thorn and be thankful for the knowledge that maybe this thorn will make me realize how much more I need to lean on Him.

So let's take a little time today to be thankful for the thorns in our lives...without them we wouldn't have the beautiful roses.

2 Corinthians 12:8-10...Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. But he said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ's sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.


  1. Thanks for sharing this, Lois. I'm going to be more thankful for some thorns too.

  2. Hi Lois, Very thought-provoking post! We must be kinda on the same wave-length, or place on our path with God, because my post today is quite similar in substance to yours. :) Thank you for sharing from your heart. I'll be praying for your physical healing, too.

    Have a good day!
    Blessings, Becky

  3. Hi Lois, What a wonderful thought..It is so true....we must be thankful in ALL things. You have a beautiful way of writing..very inspiring. Enjoy your day. Love Carol

  4. Hi Lois, on the 16th of october you wrote about your pinguecula (eye). Did you have it removed already, and how was that? I have it too, in both eyes, and it can irritate but I'm a bit affraid of having it removed. Won't it leave scars, or make your eye worse? I hope you have some more information! Kind regards,

  5. Lois, thanks for sharing transparently and for being so honest. It is important to remember that the hard times refine us and we need to embrace them. Thanks for the reminder. I have a good email story about thorns, maybe I'll post it tomorrow.

  6. Eve, I mentioned to my husband that I keep putting off finding a doctor to look at my eye! I do need to find one, but my primary doctor said it's okay as long as it's not blocking my vision. Wow, you have it in both eyes! That must be very annoying. From my own research, I think the eye surgeon just sort of scrapes off the tumor, it shouldn't leave a scar. I will probably find a doctor after the holidays. Let me know if you get brave enough before me!!!

  7. Thanks for posting this. We usually just see the thorns as inconvenient and painful, not as protection.

  8. I just did a devotional called Ministry of Thorns at my blog last week. "The ministry of thorns has often become a greater ministry to humankind than the ministry of thrones." This was a very powerful post..Thank you.