Many things that God has designed, seem to have a rhythm; breathing, heart beat, days and nights, and seasons. So, it seems, with times of ease and distress.

When using a sponge for cleaning, we use a series of squeeze and release movements.

If God had designed each of us as a sponge we would have some substance and many open spaces.

Let us picture a time of distress as a time of being pressed, perhaps even something being squeezed out of us. While we are in that state, we immerse ourselves in the attitude of our choice.

Our choice may be self-pity, or anger or blame or any number of complaints. On the other hand it might be that we become aware of an opportunity to learn something and become alert, grateful, or repentant. Our choice could be that we would be immersed in God’s Holy Spirit.

When the pressure is released we will be filled up with whatever we have been immersed in. Beware – as a filled up, wet sponge, anyone who gets anywhere close to us will get an overflow of our contents.

Consider it a sheer gift, friends, when tests and challenges come at you from all sides. You know that under pressure, your faith-life is forced into the open and shows its true colors. So don’t try to get out of anything prematurely. Let it do its work so you may become mature and well developed, not deficient in any way.

                      James 1:2-4 MSG

 Plan before how to respond to the next squeeze.

Generous in love – God, give me grace.

      Huge in mercy – wipe out my bad record

      Scrub away my guilt,

        soak out my sins in your laundry.

      Soak me in your laundry and I’ll come out clean

      Scrub me and I‘ll have a new-white life.

      God, make a fresh start in me, shape a Genesis

      week from the chaos of my life.

      Give me a job teaching rebels your ways so that

      the lost can find the way home.

      Unbutton my lips, dear God;

      I’ll let loose with your praise.

Psalms 51:1,2,7,10,13,15. MSG

By Loren Siffring.

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