I saw this sign in Target recently and stopped to look at it for a while:
Seems like this is the story of my life. As I stood there thinking about the message painted on the glass, I remembered how many times, when I’ve faced something really hard, I do not want to learn anything. I just want it over! But at the same time, when I think back to all the tough experiences I’ve lived through, I wouldn’t change any of them because each one has matured me and taught me more about God.
I can’t imagine how I would’ve made it these “growing” seasons without Christ. He was the reason I was able to grow through what I was going through. And it gave me hope that He could bring good out of anything.
Stop for a moment and assess your current life situation. Be honest.
What does it look like?
- Incredulous you are where you are?
- Hate where you are?
- Wonder how you got here?
- Wish you were anywhere but what you are?
I SO get that. Perhaps my experiences are not the same or as desperate as yours, but I have felt ALL these things, multiple times. So what to do?
- Get mad and tell the devil he cannot steal your joy! Dig your heals into the floor and say “no, in Jesus name, no! You are not more powerful than my God! You might have robbed me of a bit of joy here, or even relationships or finances or security or ________ (fill in the blank) but you do NOT have the victory. I already have victory because of what Jesus has done. You can’t steal that and you cannot keep Him from bringing good even out of this! SO THERE!” (Man, did you hear my shout in that? If so, that’s because I’ve shouted this at the enemy over and over as he sought to take me down!)
- Get in the Word. You cannot withstand your difficult life experiences unless you turn to Truth. And the only place you get Truth that is always true is the Bible. If you do not have victory right now and you aren’t in the Word, well…what do you expect. The world is shouting so many other “truths” at you and now you are starting to believe them. His Word is living and active (Hebrews 4:12) and is given to teach, reproof, train you to walk in power so that you can be equipped to do His Work and do it well! (2 Timothy 3:16-17)
- Get in prayer and seek to discover what the Lord wants to teach you through this circumstance. It’s not an accident and if sovereign God has allowed it, then He promises He can bring good out of it if we “love God and are called according to His purposes”. (Romans 8:28) Seek the prayers of your close community of believers. We are strengthened as we pray with others.
- Get victory as you hold on to the truth of who He is. Get to know Christ in an even more personal way as you hold on even when you don’t “feel like it”. Do it anyway. You will NEVER regret walking with Him through those darkest valleys because He will NEVER fail you.
He has never ever been faithless to me even when I was in the greatest of agony. And He has ALWAYS brought good out of difficulty. That is one way we “grow through what we go through.”
A sweet friend recently sent me her book, Truth to Hold On To and I wanted to shout when I finished, YES! After Kim Jaggers experienced an unbelievable series of painful losses and trials, she chose to keep living and trust the Truth. This short book is one you will read cover to cover and probably in one sitting. It’s so hard to put it down once you start. If you are struggling in a tough season this is a great word of encouragement for you (but keep tissues handy!).
Sweet friends, do not allow Satan to have his way in your situation. Thumb you nose at him as you call on the name of Jesus and His blood. Watch the devil turn tail and RUN! Then share your story of victory as a way to further thwart the enemy’s power and bring glory to your God!
I leave you with these powerful and precious words of Truth: For if we died with him, we will also live with him; if we endure, we will also reign with him; if we deny him, he will also deny us; if we are faithless, he remains faithful, for he cannot deny himself. (2 Timothy 2:11-13)
Live, endure, reign, don’t deny Him, watch Him be faithful even if you are not! Now those are words to help us Grow Through What We Go Through.