To state the obvious – things are tough right now for many people in many ways. The reality is -everybody’s got stuff. We live in a broken world with broken people who are either hurting someone else or being hurt much of the time. And when bad things inevitably happen - we have a choice – to lean in to God or to pull away from God.
I have done both. Of the two – leaning into God has always been the better choice. God created us for relationship with him. Not just for the joy-filled “Thank you Jesus” days but for the weeping on your knees, “Help me Jesus” days, as well.
The answers we seek, the patience we need, and the comfort we crave are waiting for us within the pages of God’s Word. I want to encourage you to open your Bible and before reading pray Psalm 40:8 and Psalm 25:5. “I desire to do your will, O my God; help me to place your law within my heart. Guide me in your truth and teach me, for you are God my Savior, and my hope is in you all day long.”
We need to pause and look back at God’s faithfulness in our past when we cannot see or when we doubt his faithfulness in our current circumstances. God is faithful. He will never leave us or forsake us (Deuteronomy 31:6). Look back at answered prayers. Ask God to call to mind the times he answered just as you asked as well as the times that he answered with what he knew you actually needed.
Partly it becomes a matter of trust. Do we believe that God’s Word is true? Verses like Romans 8:28 which says, “God works all things together for the good of those who love him, who are called according to his purpose.” The hard part is realizing we do not have all the pieces and cannot see how our current circumstances play into God’s bigger plan. It is finally realizing that it is not all about us, but it is about God’s greater purpose over time.
Romans 8:28 was first brought to my attention during a very difficult time in my life when I desired a very specific outcome. I grabbed hold of that verse with both hands believing that the outcome I was earnestly seeking was good, and right, and just and that he would surely agree and work it for his good. When that did not happen, it made me question everything I thought I knew and believed about God.
They say hindsight is 20/20. Looking back now - from a safer distance - I can see that I am the person I am today because of the difficult circumstances I have faced and because of a faithful God who has never left me nor forsaken me.
If you are hurting and exhausted right now - take heart. God is faithful. He can take your anger and your tears. Grab hold of him with both hands and no matter how tough it gets – never let go.
Precious Father – Thank you that because of your great love, we are not consumed. Thank you that your compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. Lord, you are my portion. Help me to wait on you (Lamentations 3:22-24). Amen.