brittleeallen

Running to Our Master in Suffering

Running to Our Master in Suffering

A month ago, my husband dropped off our sweet dog, Ruby, to have surgery to remove her eye and replace it with a prosthetic. We’d tried everything in our power to avoid this surgery, but in the end, it was the best decision to ensure her greatest health and comfort. Had we left it alone, she would continue to live her life burdened by the pain that eye was causing her.

When my husband brought her home from the surgery, it was a heartbreaking sight. She shook uncontrollably from head to paw, her eyelid was swollen shut, blood emerged from her wound, she whimpered at even the slightest move, and with the cone of shame snug around her neck, she was an anxious mess.

My husband and I were in a way “sovereign” over her pain. It was we who made the decision to cause her to endure this. My husband took her to the Veterinarian.…

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When I Couldn’t Pay My Rent

When I Couldn’t Pay My Rent

Have you ever had to choose between gasoline and food? I have. Have you ever had to overdraft your account to be able to eat? I have.

As a new believer, I was entered immediately into a series of trials. I was single, healing from the heartbreak of a broken engagement, working two jobs that barely paid more than minimum wage, and not just struggling to pay my bills—failing to pay them. I couldn’t afford rent, let alone car insurance, so when I was pulled over for expired tags (something that completely slipped my mind), I had nothing to show for coverage. One court date later and I no longer had a license.

How was I supposed to pay my rent if I couldn’t drive to work?

Things were tough. I thought my life was falling apart, but truly, God was using these things to put me back together.

The Lord Provides

Looking back, I’m amazed at the ways God provided during that time.…

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Another Way Creation Groans

Another Way Creation Groans

I feel a sort of protection over the wildlife in my backyard. As a child, I imagined myself to be like a Disney princess, surrounded by wild animals. As an adult, not much has changed. Currently, there’s a mama robin tending to her nest on my house, a few baby squirrels in our pine tree, yellow finches on my bird feeder, and until yesterday, two adorable bunnies grazing on the frosted green grass each morning.

Now there’s only one. We found the other’s remains leftover from the neighborhood stray cat that’s been hanging around.

Nature.

It’s nature, but is it really natural? Death of innocent animals? The cuddly cat that becomes a predator? Hawks that swoop in to steal new life?

I’ve been studying the old story of the first garden where death didn’t exist and God’s creation was untainted. Things were perfect then—they were good then, as God declared (Genesis 1:31).…

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COVID-19 is Destroying My Kingdom

COVID-19 is Destroying My Kingdom

Last week on a video chat with some close friends, I told them I was really thankful to not be one of those popular Christian writers who are expected to speak to cultural issues. “I don’t wanna write about the coronavirus. There are so many articles out there already.” I said.

Famous last words, I guess.

Because just two hours later, I found myself typing away.

That same day, tears filled my eyes while hugging my husband. I was overwhelmed with emotion, partially due to fear and also a burden for those most at risk for mortality. I must admit though, that my sadness had more to do with things of much smaller importance.

I saw my plans slipping from my fingers and it grieved me. My first summer with my baby boy, TGCW20 (a conference for Christian women) with my friends, vacation with my family at the beach. All of it is up in the air and I’m bummed.…

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When “Thy Will Be Done” Becomes Self-Protection

When “Thy Will Be Done” Becomes Self-Protection

I was restless. Many thoughts bouncing from one side of my head to the other, colliding and creating more thoughts. Silently, I watched the Black-Capped Chickadees dash across the yard into the white spruce right outside the window, their quickness mimicking the questions and fears racing through my mind.

How do you keep bringing your broken heart before the God who allowed it to be shattered?

That’s what I found myself wondering. It just seems easier to keep our distance and bury our longings in the tomb with all that’s been lost.

The Idol of Self-Protection

Praying for things we desire comes naturally for many people but for me, it’s a struggle. I fear my heart’s quick reaction to such prayers—how it turns my requests into idols. I don’t want to desire the created thing more than the Creator, so I don’t ask. But in not taking my supplications to him, I keep back a part of my heart from him, and therefore, provide fresh soil for the roots of another idol to deepen.…

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Watch Your Word-Faith

Watch Your Word-Faith

This article originally appeared on Whole Magazine.

“God is the Healer of all our sickness. You just need more faith.”

They mean well, they really do. But those whose ears have been tickled by false gospels like the prosperity gospel and the word-faith movement, don’t see the repercussions of their own words. They use God’s Word out of context and make claims to prosperity that aren’t there, leaving out the many passages which prove the Christian life is not a cake-walk.

Many Christians are infertile, have cancer, have miscarried or delivered lifeless babies, are tortured for their alliance to Jesus. And on top of these heart-wrenching trials, there are some whose theology would deem the suffering of these believers a result of their faithlessness. This terribly unbiblical theology places the blame on the Christian for any painful thing that enters their life. Furthermore, it hardens the lost to God, the gospel, and the Church.…

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