In the beginning of trying new things or hoping for a better journey, that is when storm comes by surprise.
It feels good to be back.
Last year took everyone by storm with the surprise visit of Covid-19. Starting 2020 never seem to have ended the way it did. But eventually the storm struck and almost one quarter of the world’s population died, while some are still fighting for their lives.
Why am I writing this?
I have come to understand that you can plan for the new year, but also plan for the challenges. We all pray this new year will be different and will benefit many of us. But also watch out!
A lot of people are out of jobs including myself. The weirdest thing about mine was that they terminated my contract long before I knew something was fishing. A lot of businesses shut down, food prices increased, fuel and electricity bill increased, and so much more.. But most especially loosing a loved one. 😢😥
In all, some individuals still made billions.
Now what I propose is to start finding new ideas to solving problems. A lot of people might be broke, but a lot also made some cool cash.
So I have taken it upon myself to start meditating in prayers for direction. This year will definitely be different from last year. Let’s take it upon ourselves to help one another, communicate more, and spread positivity.
NB: Don’t look at the challenges affecting the world now, instead find a path where you can make it a better place once again. #quote by me.
Both the hummingbird and the vulture fly over our nation’s deserts. All vultures see is rotting meat, because that is what they look for. They thrive on that diet. But hummingbirds ignore the smelly flesh of dead animals. Instead, they look for the colorful blossoms of desert plants. The vultures live on what was. They live on the past. They fill themselves with what is dead and gone. But hummingbirds live on what is. They seek new life. They fill themselves with freshness and life. Each bird finds what it is looking for. We all do.
The difference between the vulture and the hummingbird is a lot like that difference between worry and hope. Like the vulture, worry feeds on things that have no life: negativity, pessimism, fear, anxiety. It’s an ugly way to live, savaging for sustenance among dead and dying things. But hope is different. Like the hummingbird, hope is beautiful. Hope seeks new life, feeding on what is fresh and new.
As a child of God, it is your right to enjoy your life, but in order to do that, you will need to choose to be positive, looking for what is fresh and new. Being positive means you are actively looking for good things. You’re constantly believing and searching for the good things God has for you, not looking for or anticipating the next disaster.
It’s not enough to just get rid of negativity- that’s just the beginning. You have the opportunity to get rid of negativity and then embrace a positive outlook of life!
NB: The difference between the vulture and the hummingbird is a lot like the difference between worry and hope. Remember that..
You can determine what kind of life you are going to live based on the way you choose to look at yourself and the situations in your life. If you look at your faults and failures, thinking those are the things that defines you, you are not going to hope that God will do much in your life. And if you look at and talk about your problems constantly, they’re going to seem too big to overcome, and you’re going to find that hope is a hard thing to hold on to.
I hope you never stop believing that the hard days are going to be over. The days of confusion, anxiety and overthinking will not be the center of your universe. The days of heartbreak and pain will not be how every story ends. I hope you always remember that you were promised ease after difficulties, a rainbow after a hurricane and love after heartache.
I hope you never stop believing that one of those days, you will get it right. Whether in your career or your love life. Whether in your finances or your health. You will eventually find the resources you need to make it happen. You will eventually have the determination to fight for the things that matter to you and make them work. You will eventually realign your priorities once you learn the hard way what’s important and what’s not.
I hope you never lose hope. I hope you always find ways to restore your hope and renew your faith. I hope you understand that maybe your hope is somewhere else, maybe it’s the city you’re in that makes you feel helpless or the person you’re with but the hope for a better life should always be there. The hope for better things to come should never leave your mind. I hope you never lose faith in God or in yourself because that will give you all the power you need when your life is falling apart.
I hope you never stand in your own way. I hope you don’t let your own thoughts belittle you or your actions stop you from trying to change or improve your life. I hope you always find the courage to take big risks or end bad relationships. I hope you always find yourself daring and dreaming. I hope you never let your fears define your life. I hope you always break all the rules and the barriers you set for yourself that limited you from living your life to the fullest.
I hope you have the wisdom to wait instead of giving up. I hope you understand that you’ll never understand timing or why things are taking too long to happen or why you feel stuck all the time. I hope you know how to live with these questions until you find the answers.
I hope you pursue those answers by taking action and trial and error instead of fear and complacency. I hope you learn from your lessons but I also hope you never stop making mistakes. I hope you never forget that you’re human. I hope that instead of searching for perfection, you search for meaning. Instead of searching for stability, search for happiness.
Instead of putting timelines and deadlines to your life, put an end to your doubts and never lose hope that when your time comes, it’s going to be better than anything you had imagined for yourself. It’s going to be worth the wait.
So thus week it will be all bout guest blogging on my platform. These posts i will be posting are powerful and will lift your spirit up to the net level. Highly inspirational and full of motivation.
Hope means, “to desire something with confident expectation of its fulfillment.” The state of Hopelessness has been aptly described as a type of “Hell on Earth,” filled with endless despondency and despair.
Today, more and more people are finding themselves alone and depressed, and few of us have not at one time, or another felt the sting of despondency and despair.
But Good news! Help is available, not the kind the world has, wherein it wishes for the best. It is one thing to wish, and quite another to have faith based on the promises of God.
God is Our Source
Paul wrote that when you place your trust in God, He will fill you with peace, joy, and assurance, (Rom 15:13).
Throughout the Bible, God proves His faithfulness to His people by leading them safely through or delivering them from all their predicaments and troubles. He will never leave or forsake His people; His plans are to prosper, not to harm them (Jer 29:11).
People and things will always let us down. In Psa 33:17, the horse, often used as a symbol of power, is declared a vain hope for deliverance; despite all its great strength, it cannot save. In Jer 17:5 God sternly warns against placing our dependency on man and calls it a curse.
God wants us to trust in Him. Psa 147:11 tells us that He is delighted when we put our trust in Him, and in Heb 10:23 we are told to rely on Him for He who promised it is faithful.
To reap the benefits of the Christian life and to have protection, guidance, freedom from depression, and advice from the Holy Spirit one must first be born again and become a Child of God.
The born again Child of God has the unique privilege of talking to and hearing from God, but this, the greatest resource available, is often neglected.
Christians should always pray! Even in the darkest moments when you don’t feel His presence and think you will never smile again, pray anyway because He is there. He is listening and is an “ever-present help in time of trouble,” (Psa 46:1).
“He has delivered us from such a deadly peril, and he will deliver us. On him we have set our hope that he will continue to deliver us,” (2 Cor 1:10).
When we place our faith in God and the resurrection of Jesus from the dead, we then trust Him to take us to Heaven. If we can trust Him with our eternity, surely we can trust Him for our earthly/daily cares.
Jesus said that as God clothes the grass of the field, so will He clothe us even more. He tells us not to worry about what we shall eat or drink or how we will be clothed. The “heavenly father knoweth that ye have need of all these things,” (Matt 6:30-32).
“Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him,” (1 Cor 2:9).
Hope in Difficult Times
Even if you reach what you consider to be your lowest point, God’s Word says’s He will never leave or forsake you, (Matt 28:20). Easy as it’s said, it is not easy as humans, only through discipline and putting our full trust in God.
He will give you peace and comfort even in the worst of circumstances, then lead you through, over or around the muck and mire of your situation, and again set your feet on solid ground.
Our God is the God of new beginnings, with Him, nothing is impossible. Whether you are very young or considered to be very old, trust in Him because with Him it is always just the beginning.
You may even find yourself in such a situation through divorce, death of a spouse, loss of health, finances, or whatever, that may force you to begin all over again, but is that so bad? Trusting God in difficult times forces us to seek His guidance, and to trust in Him.
Trusting God through these uncharted waters takes faith and courage, but is worth every effort. The path of His choosing is the only one that leads to true happiness,
Isn’t this a wonderful promise “…those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint,” (Is 40:31).
Even in the Worst of Situations
A shining example of living with hope is Victor Frankel, a former prisoner in a Nazi prison camp.
“As a long-time prisoner in bestial concentration camps he [Viktor Frankly] found himself stripped to naked existence. His father, mother, brother, and his wife died in camps or were sent to gas ovens, so that, excepting for his sister, his entire family perished in these camps.
How could he – every possession lost, every value destroyed, suffering from hunger, cold and brutality, hourly expecting extermination – how could he find life worth preserving?”
In one of his darkest moments while digging in a cold icy trench, he writes:
“In a last violent protest against the hopelessness of imminent death, I sensed my spirit piercing through the enveloping gloom. I felt it transcend that hopeless, meaningless world, and from somewhere I heard a victorious ‘Yes’ in answer to my question of the existence of an ultimate purpose.
At that moment a light was lit in a distant farmhouse, which stood on the horizon as if painted there, in the midst of the miserable grey of a dawning morning in Bavaria. ‘Et lux in tenebris lucent’–and the light shineth in the darkness.”
From one of His Counseling Sessions
“This young woman knew that she would die in the next few days. But when I talked to her she was cheerful in spite of this knowledge. ‘I am grateful that fate has hit me so hard,’ she told me. ‘In my former life I was spoiled and did not take spiritual accomplishments seriously.’
Pointing through the window of the hut, she said, ‘This tree here is the only friend I have in my loneliness.’ Through that window she could see just one branch of a chestnut tree, and on the branch were two blossoms. ‘I often talk to this tree,’ she said to me.
I was startled and didn’t quite know how to take her words. Was she delirious? Did she have occasional hallucinations? Anxiously I asked her if the tree replied. ‘Yes.’ What did it say to her? She answered, ‘It said to me, “I am here–I am here–I am life, eternal life.” (“www.rjgeib.com/thoughts/frankl/frankl.html”)
Jesus is Our Solid Rock
Christians can find peace during times of crises and trials that often drive others to drink or suicide. This is the blessed comfort of the Holy Spirit, who indwells every born again Believer.
Through Him, even in the midst of terrible devastating and humiliating experiences, Christians can have the peace, joy, and hope that passes all understanding, (Phil 4:7).
Hope for Eternity
Jesus is our solid rock, and because of Him, death is not the end. Even when the angels carry us to our glorious home in Heaven, we can know that He is with us and that it is just the beginning.
Claim His Promises
God’s promises are indeed a genuine source of hope that does not disappoint. It is in His promises you will find everlasting life and confident hope.
“For no matter how many promises God has made, they are “Yes,” in Christ, (2 Cor 1; 20).
“May the God of your hope so fill you with all joy and peace in believing [through the experience of your faith] that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound and be overflowing (bubbling over) with hope.” (Rom 15:13, Amp).
“Why are you downcast, O my soul? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God,” (Psa 42:5).
With God’s help, we can do what seems impossible if we will not be afraid to try.
Some of the world’s most well-known people had a “can do” attitude and they did amazing things. Here are quotes from a few of them:
It’s kind of fun to do the impossible – Walt Disney
There is nothing impossible to him who will try – Alexander the Great
Every noble work is at first impossible – Thomas Carlyle
The only place that your dream becomes impossible is in your own thinking – Robert H. Schuller
We would accomplish many more things if we did not think of them as impossible – Vince Lombardi
The word impossible is not in my dictionary – Napoleon Bonaparte
It always seems impossible until it is done – Nelson Mandela
Don’t allow your mind to become a hindrance to the things you can accomplish in life. Think big, as God does! You are going to think something, so why think something little? I believe a lot of people are afraid to think big because they don’t want to be disappointed, but i would rather take a chance on being disappointed occasionally than live a disappointing life because i never tried.
Everything that has never been done is impossible until someone does it, so why can’t it be you?
I never expected my blog to reach a lot of people from different nations, giving them hope and bringing the Kingdom of God close to them. I think i have mentioned this in one of my post before. I used to be an entertainment blogger with lots of traffic and engagement. It was hard for me to delete that blog to start this one. It came to my mind how am going to cope running a motivational blog. It was just a dream now it’s a reality. I haven’t gotten to that point i want to be, but am sure grateful to be impacting lives positively.
Dare to dream and your dreams just might come true! Dream of nothing and you are sure to get everything you failed to dream.
Have bigger hopes, dream big, and think big. Somebody is going to do it, and it may as well be you!
I applaud Tatyana for this creatively written piece for us all to learn something about God’s patience.
Despite the overwhelming horrors of our sin, God chooses patience over judgment. He chooses to love us in grace and waits for us to return to Him.
The popular Netflix movieBird Boxexplores what happens when people are exposed to the absolutely worst thing they can imagine. In each scenario, the characters’ response is suicide (unless they were mentally ill). To protect themselves, the surviving characters walk around with blindfolds on.
The movie made me consider what would be horrible for me. Maybe it would be seeing a true reflection of my heart or witnessing the pure evil in the world. Even now, I am easily overwhelmed by the horrors that happen in our world–a few minutes of the news, and I am ready to blindfold myself. What if we couldn’t walk away though? What if we were subjected to not just a segment of the worlds’ sin, but all of it, all the time?
We Can Walk Away
I am blessed that, for the most part, I can walk away from the ugly reflection of our sin. God, however, cannot. He endures every act of violence, every injury to a child, every misalignment of his character for all time. God could end it too. He could stop the sin and suffering by bringing His mighty judgment. However, it would have to be one that wipes out the earth though since none of us is innocent.
Ironically, this seems to be a theme inBird Box.Those who are insane deliberately try to get others to open their eyes and call it a cleansing. But this is a cleansing without mercy and without hope.
God’s response is neither to blindfold himself or to destroy us. Instead, He makes a way out that both respects the grievous effects of sin and the suffering it causes. His way though still shows value to every person, no matter how defiled. He takes the consequence of the sin upon Himself and only asks that we admit our need for Him.
But He Waits
That mighty judgment is there too, but He waits.2 Peter 3:9(ESV) says,
“The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance.” He waits because He wants as many as possible that can be saved to be saved.
The parable of the Prodigal Son illustrates God’s patience with us (Luke 15:11-32). Most of you are probably familiar already with the often-told tale of the two brothers. The younger, impetuous and disrespectful, requests his inheritance (before his father has even passed away) and runs off to waste his money. When it runs out and famine comes to the land, the son “came to himself” (vs17). He then remembered the mercy of his father and decided to return. He rehearsed his speech of penitence, expecting to be treated as a servant. Instead, the father saw him afar off and “felt compassion, and ran and embraced him and kissed him” (vs. 20). Even more, the father planned a party to celebrate his lost son returning. The older son is angry because he had been faithfully serving. It doesn’t feel fair to him. Ironically, this parable’s theme hinges on the older son’s lack of compassion and joy for his younger brother, mirroring the Pharisees’ own biases towards the sinners they observed.
What Do We Learn?
There are two lessons here–first, a warning not to be like the Pharisees who cared more about the judgment of sin than the rescuing of their brother. They are the ones who are eager for the “cleansing.” We must remember to look with compassion on those around us, no matter what state they are in.
There is also a message of hope too–a peek into the character of God as we observe his divine patience. In the story, the father allows his son to run off and to waste the money that the father, not the son, so meticulously stores up. He doesn’t pursue him with demands to do his part–he waits until the son is ready.
He is Patient with Us
God exercises patience with us also. He allows what we consider a disgusting use of his resources in order to accomplish the perfect timing of redemption. When I look back over my own spiritual journey, I see how patiently He has waited for me to understand different truths. I see clearly how He never gives up on me, no matter how foolish I am.
This mindset reminds me that I can pass that patience on to those around me, remembering that God is working in each person and is on a journey of their own. I don’t want to be like the Pharisees or the older brother who seemed to delight in the idea of people being punished. Instead, I want to be like the father, anxiously waiting for the turning, for the moment when those who are lost, are found again. There’s a big party coming, and I want to be one who rejoices.
It is difficult right now to see the evil of man and to feel hope, but we can be confident that God sees more clearly than we do what is going on and what needs to happen. He is not blind–in fact, He sees all and still has hope.
Transformation isn’t neat and pretty. Nope. It can look messy and it not without obstacles. It’s like putting a piece of furniture together. At first it’s neatly in a box, but it can’t be used that way. So you have to take out all the pieces, which makes a mess, and begin the process. You have to do it in a specific order or it won’t work. Finally, when you’re done, the mess will be gone and you’ll have a product that’s ready to be used for it’s purpose.
It’s no different with us. We are being transformed into the likeness of Christ. It’s during these times that our lives and situationslookthe messiest. We know that God is working behind the scenes and putting all the pieces together, but we have no idea what step He’s on or how much longer it will take. We only see the mess, the unfinished product. Weeks, months, and even years go by and we wonder if the promise will still come to pass or if we should just give up?
The answer is simple. We don’t give up or lose hope. We abide in Jesus and in the promise, trusting that He is faithful to fulfill EVERY promise he has made to us. I know it’s difficult. You may lose relationships, you will be persecuted and mocked, you will look foolish at times to other people, and what God instructs you do will not always make sense in the natural. However, at some point we have to resolve to follow Him no matter the cost, and trust Him with our whole heart. That’s the reason for the tests and trials; to develop your character so you can produce the fruit of the spirit (Galatians 5:22-23).
Last night before bed, my wife certainly started crying when we about to pray. I asked what was wrong with her, she said nothing. I persisted until she gave in and told me she was crying to God for better opportunities in our lives. Later she said she also told God that other people don’t have two heads, making it and living large. I stopped her there to give a more clearer view on things. Never look at another person’s success or compare your life to another. She has been asking God for a breakthrough but still expectant. I had to advise her to keep praying and believing. We should be grateful for what we have now, be contented as God elevates us. I was glad to calm her down before going to bed.
Am so deep and sunk myself in Jesus that my life is filled with hope.
Consider It Pure Joy, My Brothers And Sisters, Whenever You Face Trials Of Many Kinds, Because You Know That The Testing Of Your Faith Produces Perseverance. Let Perseverance Finish Its Work So That You May Be Mature And Complete, Not Lacking Anything. –James 1:2-4
Let’s look at the story of the Israelites as an example, when they we’re fleeing Eqypt after 400 years of slavery.
God not only promised the Israelites freedom from the Egyptians, but also a land of their own. They would no longer be subjects to a King, but a free people governed by God. However, there would be obstacles between there current situation and the promise. The first one was the Red Sea. In order to get to the promised land they first had to cross the Red Sea. Oh, and did I mention that Egypt’s army was pursuing them as well? So turning back was not an option.
Now God could have led them a different way to the same destination. He didn’t have to take them through the Sea. So why did He? To show His glory, build their faith, and protect them.
He parted the sea and Israel crossed on dry land. Right after, He closed the waters and allowed the Egyptians to drown so they would no longer be a threat. This route led the Isrealites directly into the wilderness. It’s there that they were able to see God’s power one-on-one, and it’s also where God tested them. They were out of Egypt, but Egypt was not out of them. God needed to free them from old habits and ways of thinking before He could entrust them with more.
“I Am The Vine; You Are The Branches. If You Remain In Me And I In You, You Will Bear Much Fruit; Apart From Me You Can Do Nothing.” – John 14:5
We may never know the entire reason God does something a particular way, but we can trust that His plan is perfect. It’s for our good and His glory (Romans 8:28). The Israelites could have given up, or attempted to take matters into their own hands and go another way, but they didn’t. They trusted God and witnessed Him make a way where there was no way.
It’s easy to get disillusioned by the situation you’re stuck in, the battle you’re facing, or the trial that won’t seem to end – and begin to doubt God’s provision. I want to assure you that He’s still at work. You’re just in the middle right now and it’s hard to see the forest from the trees. However, God has a bird’s-eye view. He knows everything that lies ahead of you and is going before you to prepare the way. This isn’t the the time to make decisions based on your circumstances or limited wisdom, it’s crucial to be obedient.
Your transformation won’t come without obstacles and opposition because challenge gives birth to growth.
How can you reach new levels of faith in God if you’re not challenged to believe bigger, prayer bolder, and walk by faith and not by sight? If you abide in Jesus and don’t give up, you WILL see the victory. Like the Israelite’s, you will see God do what only He can do. Nothing is impossible for Him (Matthew 19:26).
Being Confident Of This, That He Who Began A Good Work In You Will Carry It On To Completion Until The Day Of Christ Jesus. – Philippians 1:6
This won’t be possible without the assistance of Tiffani Butt.
If you’re going through a difficult time right now, I want you to know that God loves you. He sees what you’re going through, He is with you, and He desires to help you right where you are.
Psalm 34:18(NLT) says,The Lord is close to the brokenhearted; he rescues those whose spirits are crushed. When we are hurting, God hurts with us.
Maybe you feel like things have gotten too difficult and there’s nothing good left for your future. That is what the enemy wants you to believe, but God has something else to say…
The Lord says,For I know the thoughts and plans that I have for you…thoughts and plans for welfare and peace and not for evil, to give youhopein your final outcome(Jeremiah 29:11).
Our enemy, Satan, wants to discourage us and make us feel like things will never get better…like there’s no way out. He wants us to believe that we’re all alone. I dealt with depression for years, and there’s a tendency to want to keep it hidden. It’s easy to isolate ourselves and feel like no one else can possibly understand.
The enemy likes it when we keep things hidden in the dark. However, God isLight, and when we discover what He has to say and shine His light into our situation, it brings freedom and hope.
I think it’s common for people to feel embarrassed when it comes to depression or having thoughts of suicide. But the greatest thing we can do in these situations is tell someone else and get it out in the open.
If that’s where you are today, I encourage you to take a step of faith and reach out to a close friend or a trained Christian counselor. Don’t allow the enemy to keep it hidden, but take the opportunity to get things out into the light.
I’ve learned from experience that keeping things like this to ourselves makes everything seem worse than it really is. But when we get it out into the open, it brings relief, and we allow God to use other people to help us.
The truth is, weallneed to talk to someone at different times. We all go through things and need someone to help us get through our difficult seasons in life.
If you’re feeling overwhelmed, I encourage you to take a few moments and pray right now:
“Father, I need You now. You say You love me and see exactly where I am…and in spite of how I feel, I choose to believe Your Word. In the face of all I am going through, I look to You for help. I need Your strength to deal with everything that feels too big for me right now. Help me to keep my eyes on You. Please make Yourself real to me…and encourage me for the road ahead. Help me experience Your love and presence in a tangible way. I give all that I am to You. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.”
At this moment, you may be facing what seems like an impossible situation. But I want you to know that God can make all things new. He can take your problem and turn it into somethinggood.
Hopeis the confident expectation that somethinggoodis going to happen. It’s closely related to our faith and what we believe. When we dare to hope, it floods our life with joy and peace. My wife, and I laugh about it now, but in the early years of our relationship, I was passing through some serious depression and challenges. Negativity was like my middle name. I often joke that if I thought two positive thoughts in a row, my brain would get into a cramp! But thank Jesus today, am alive, we married, I got a job, and I have my blog. All to the glory of God. Today, I can honestly sit here and tell you that God has transformed me from being negative and pessimistic to someone who is full of hope, always expecting His goodness around every corner. Little by little, He helped me discover the power of hope and what that means for my thoughts, words, attitudes and every area of my life. Wherever you find yourself today—regardless of what’s happened or how things may look right now—always remember thatGod is on your side. He is the God of the impossible…and the One who can make a miracle out of any situation.
Every human being goes through seasons of struggling in their lives; it is something that we all have in common. Difficult times will look different for each of us. We are all in 1 of these 3 categories: In a difficult season, about to be in one, or just coming out of one. Super negative, right? From the world’s perspective, it sure is! But what about God’s perspective?
In my early twenties, my tendency was to give up and go a different direction when a difficult situation would present itself. When there was a ‘struggle’ I’d search for another way. However, as I grew in my relationship with God, I learned to persevere through these times of difficulty. Once I started persevering and refusing to just give up, I realized that I experience the growth in my life during my struggles. You cannot get where you need to be without going through the trials of today.
God has taught me over the last few years that my struggles are not roadblocks, they are actually landmarks. These struggles are things that I need to face in order to become who I am supposed to be in Him. Once I really started to understand that the struggles were a necessity for growth, two things happened:
1. I found myself deciding that I had to face them head on and remain positive in doing so. 2. After the victory, I found myself saying things like this: “That was the moment when change and growth started. That is what taught me the skills I needed in order to be where I am today.”
Since this principle has become part of who I am, I have grown so much! God has started using me to help others who are going through similar situations. All of this is possible only because instead of just giving up or turning a different direction, I trusted God and stayed faithful to Him. I continued to walk the way that He has called me to walk during those seasons.R
My perspective on difficult situations has been forever changed! I can’t begin to explain the amount of growth that I have experienced because of this.
I write this post today not to boast about being able to get through difficult situations, but instead to encourage you to do the same; press on! Start viewing struggling as a landmark, not a roadblock! James 1:2-4 has been a foundational verse for me on this topic:
“Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.” – James 1:2-4
I encourage you today, no matter what you are struggling with, remember that it truly is a landmark, one day you will look back and say: “That was the situation that God used to grow me.” Pray for God to give you the grace to persevere through whatever it is that you may be going through. Remember that He loves and cares for you and will help you as long as you remain faithful to Him.
Struggling is a landmark, not a roadblock. Press on through the time of testing and gain the testimony that will enable you to help others in the future!
Have you ever felt like it’s arrogant to ask God to do things when you pray to Him? For example, maybe you have thought that you can’t ask Him to heal you when there are so many others who need healing? As if His power to heal is limited. Or maybe you want to pray for someone else to be healed, or receive provision, but you feel like you don’t have the authority to request such things from God. You may even feel like your bothering Him and wasting His time. I have felt like this often, and because of that I have often prayed very safe prayers. I would not say prayers expecting God to actually perform miracles, and I would tell myself it was because I was being humble. Truthfully, it was because I didn’t believe that He would actually do the things I was asking Him to do. I was not approaching Him with the expectancy that He was fully able and willing to give good gifts to His children for the glory of His name. After being confronted with an idea from some other believers that God actually wants us to pray and act as if we are expecting miracles and breakthrough, I decided to go to His word and see what it had to say on the matter. I found myself reading one of my favorite stories in the bible. It’s the story in Mark 2 where a group of men have a friend who is paralyzed. They want to get their friend to Jesus to be healed, but Jesus is teaching in a house and there are too many people in their way to get to Him. Since they cannot carry their friend through the crowd, they decide to take another route. These men cut out a hole in the roof of the house, and lower their friend to Jesus. The word says that when Jesus saw their faith, He said to the Paralyzed man, “Son, your sins are forgiven.”
That man picked up his mat and walked out of that place fully healed, because his friends had the audacity to believe that Jesus is who He said He is. They believed it so strongly that this group of men knew that if they got their friend to Jesus, their friend would be healed. They acted in persistence in accordance with that belief. What’s amazing is that Jesus didn’t look up through the roof and say, “What in the world are you guys doing! Can’t you see that I’m teaching here? Are you trying to twist the arm of God? What makes you think I would heal your friend before everyone else here who needs healing? How arrogant of you!”
Yet, this is how I found myself praying, as if I was expecting such a response. I would pray as if God was angry and annoyed with me approaching His throne. The truth is that the Kingdom of God is at hand! God is an amazing, loving Father that longs to bring heaven to earth. Because I am washed by the blood of Jesus, I now have full access to Him. The same Spirit that raised Christ from the dead now dwells in me. And it is not my Father’s will for people to walk around broken and hurting. It is my Father’s will to usher His children back into the kingdom. It’s His will to heal, restore, and poor out His love in ways that are beyond our human comprehension.
This is true for every single person who has been washed by the blood of Christ. As He is, so are we in this world! You have the Spirit of the living God dwelling inside of you, which is utterly amazing! But the real question is, what are to doing with it? Are you reaching out to others with expectancy? Are you acting as if you know full well that God longs to heal, restore, and pour out His love on people through you, so that He can bring them home into a loving relationship with Himself? What roof do you need to cut a hole into today? What is that thing in our life that you have been looking at and saying, “The line is too long. There is no way I can get to Jesus. I don’t want to bother Him.” If you truly believe that He is who He says He is and will do what He says He can do, your expectancy will carry you up on the roof and you will gladly cut out a hole to get to Him. Expectancy is not pride. It’s faith that God is who He says He is!
Nobody wants to die but want to go to heaven. Death is inevitable. But death─ sudden or expected─ always brings sorrow and grief to the ones who are left behind. However, life still marches on. It is hard, but we must remember that as humanswe have an immense ability to copewith anything that life brings. Although we all have different levels of coping abilities, there are several basic and universal steps to dealing with grief and finding hope again…
Allow The Feelings To Flow: Losing someone you love will conjure all unimaginable emotions within you, sorrow, regret, guilt, pain, grief, heartbreaks, misery, anger, sadness and many more. Feeling these emotions all at once can be extremely difficult. It is quite normal, so let them flow. You do not need to suppress them. Cry all you want. With time and allowing grief to be released, it will become less painful. It is an important process that will help you in dealing with grief and accepting your loss.
Talk About It When You Can: Talking about the death of your loved ones can be a way of remembering them and can help you understand what happened. It will give you the opportunity to start the healing process. Denying the death of a loved one can result in isolation and you pushing away your family and friends.
Find A Support System: Coping with a loved one’s death is never easy; especially if you are dealing with it alone. You need support coming from your family and friends so that you can find comfort and overcome grief faster. Moreover, while your family and friends can be your greatest source of support for overcoming the death of someone, but it is also advisable that you take advice from professional people when you find all the emotions and pain too hard to handle. Psychologists give professional advice and develop strategies according to your needs to get you through the grieving process.
Understand The Grieving Process: Dealing with grief and bereavement is a process. It is quite important to allow yourself to experience every stage of the grieving process for you to completely heal. Elisabeth Kubler-Ross outlined the five stages of grief in her book titled “On Death and Dying.” These stages are not necessarily experienced in order and some stages can be revisited. These five stages are:
Denial: Dealing with death can be overwhelming. It is an incomprehensible experience and you can find it hard to believe that your loved one is gone. You continue to deny that it is not happening and there is no way that your loved one left you.
Anger: As you realize the reality of your situation you begin to feel angry. Your anger or fury might be directed to your loved one for leaving you, to the doctors for not doing their job and healing your loved one, to God who took your loved one or even to yourself for maybe not being a better person to your loved one. All of this is quite normal and will pass.
Bargaining: It is quite common for an individual to start bargaining or negotiating with a higher power, like God. Do not be surprised or think that you are crazy when you start making deals with God like: “I will be better, just please give him back to me.”
Depression: The sorrow and overwhelming sadness you feel after the death of a loved one is normal. It is common to feel that your life will never be the same again. This feeling does not last forever and will pass with time.
Acceptance: This stage does not necessarily mean that you accept or come to terms that your loved one is already dead. It does not mean that if you are already at this stage, you will not revisit the other stages above. But rather, it means that the pain and grief of losing someone you love will reduce and become more manageable.
Celebrate Life: You need to mourn the death of your loved ones, but there comes a time when you need to turn from the mourning toward a new stage, of celebrating life again. Understanding that death is inevitable and that we will all die someday will give you an opportunity to live your life to the fullest.Remember that your life does not stop when someone you love passes away. Ask yourself this: “Would he or she be happy seeing me like this forever because they passed?” Cry as much as you need to, but know that your family and friends are still there for you, ready to walk forward and to live life fully with you now. Celebrate the fact that you are living.
Preserve Precious Memories: Someone so special to you might be gone but their memories stay. Keep all photographs, things he or she gave you, or create a memorial like planting a tree to remember your loved one. This will help you keep all the memories you shared together and overcome your loss.
Final Thoughts: It always feels so unfair when someone you love passes away, but that does not mean you have to stop living. God created us, human beings, to be strong and to survive anything. So, grieve as much as you need to, and remember you will be able to stand up and smile again. After all, your loved ones may not have stayed with you, but the memories you have with them will forever stay in your heart.
I can testify to each and every point stated here. I don’t know about you but if you have anyone facing the difficulty of not passing through grief and lack hope. Please share this with them.