How would you describe the color of the sky during a morning sunrise? Is it boring brown, black, gray or white? No! How about flaming torches of orange, red, yellow, even purple on occasion?

This morning on my jog I saw the most beautiful cloud splashed with a purple not found in a crayon box. I thought it interesting that usually clouds are cotton ball white or stormy gray, but this morning the colors of the dawn reflected on the cloud and not just the sky. When I started out though, before the sun rise, blackness clothed the sky. As I ran, I witnessed the sky go from black, to purple, to shining white and clear. Remind you of anything else? I wish it could have reminded me of a beautiful, fragrant flower, rich in color. But no, it reminded me of a bruise. Bruises usually start out black, then after a few days turn purple, blue, sometimes even green. Then after awhile, they return to normal skin color and the evidence of the mishap is gone. I thought the purple cloud was beautifully breathtaking this morning, and I must say, I’ve never thought that about a bruise.

Have you ever been bruised by God? You may be appalled by the question. Have you ever been bruised because He didn’t answer something you specifically asked for with all the faith in the world? Bruised because He answered differently than you expected or took something/someone away from you? Bruised because what you thought were right choices have left hard consequences? Or bruised because of His silence? I have, with all of the above, and it hurts. I felt His presence with me as I thought about this, and laid out, with tears, again the areas that were still a bit tender. Then I looked back up at that magnificent cloud. It was displaying the Lord’s splendor right in front of me, for what other God could bring up the sun every day in such a fashion? I think in the same way, our “bruises” are opportunities to display the glory of the Lord, if we will surrender to His sunrise schedule. A few minutes later and a different cloud would have been on rotation and been put on display, but God chose THAT cloud for this morning. And by the time my miles had ended, the once “bruised” cloud was a glorious shining white with not a trace left of purple. Now that reminded me how Jesus has purified us whiter than snow and left no trace of our old self.
One of my favorite songs on the radio right now has a line that says “Make me broken so I can be whole”. Sometimes, that’s what God has to do with us. Break us, to then make us whole. How glorious it is that in a painful process we can be shining examples of His glory to others, and maybe even encourage others as they might be picked as that cloud tomorrow.

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