Roses have thorns #2

Josue' with Dr Kiley in Florida where Josue' shared telemedicine
Josue’ with Dr Kiley in Florida where Josue’ shared telemedicine

Dottie invited six of the older girls who are having their birthdays thi week to eat lunch with us & share ice cream & cake. She tries to make things special for them.

Also Flor cooked a punch with various fruits & served ALL of the children. It is a Guatemalan Christmas tradition.


Life can be exciting and full of fun. I look at my life and there have been many more ups than there have been downs. There has been much more laughter than tears. There has been much more good than bad. There has been much more joy than sorrow. In fact, there have been many more roses than thorns. But as the Word says in John 16:33 “In this life there will be trouble”.

There’s illness . . abuse . . . broken relationships. . . betrayal . . . sorrow . . . loss . . . injuries. . . disappointment . . . heartache . . . crime . . .and death. Pain can be seen everywhere.

God is not the creator of evil and suffering.  Have you heard this question? “Why didn’t God merely create a world where suffering and evil didn’t exist?” The answer is: He did. Genesis 1:31 says: “God saw all that he had made, and it was very good. The entrance of sin by Adam and Eve brought the thorns.

God can use pain for our good. That does not seem correct but it is most certainly true. I could give you “spiritual” answers but I would rather tell you a story.

Over 50 years ago Dottie and I had a baby girl. We were in California with both our families 1/2 continent away. Michelle was born severely mentally retarded and with a critically damaged heart. Her life was one of 11 months. Seven times she quit breathing and seven times Dottie was able to minister life saving maneuvers for her to resume breathing. Finally, as we were driving in downtown Bakersfield, Michelle died on Dottie’s lap.

The pain my wife suffered could never be accurately measured. It brought us near to divorce. It even brought Dottie near to suicide. Over the next few years two more children suffered the same fate. By then our faith and acceptance that God was in control had reached a level where we could accept the thorns among the roses.

The pain we suffered brought us a deep hunger to have children.Now 5000 children later our garden has multiple roses and certainly many more roses than thorns. God used our pain to create a love for children and then He gave us the children to receive our love.