I wrote an entire blog post, and let me tell you, it was a rather long post. I had read it through a few times, made changes, and finally felt it was ready to be published. Looking it over one more time, I decided it needed one more picture. I don’t know what I did wrong, but in the process of choosing the image and uploading it, I deleted my entire post! I’m sure you know how I felt at that moment. I went searching all over the place trying to find it. It was no where to be found. It was gone for all time and eternity, and it was late at night. Shutting my computer off, I went to bed.
It’s been a couple of days now, and I’m finally writing a new post. I needed a little time before I was ready to start over again. And guess what? I decided that maybe I wasn’t supposed to write that last blog post. Perhaps it was more for me than for anyone else who might read it.
I realize this was a minor thing in the greater scheme of life. We all have faced worse circumstances than these. We feel helpless. There is no quick fix. The problem will not quickly resolve itself, and sometimes it will never go away. It turns your life down a path you never wanted to take. You’re stuck. You can’t go back to yesterday when everything was better.
You cannot help what comes your way, but you can choose how you will respond. You cannot stop the emotions that will rise up in you or the tears that will fall. Your heart may break and you may grieve. But you know you cannot stay in this place. You have to move forward or you will be swallowed up by despair. You must decide how you will go on, and that decision will impact your future far more than the circumstance that brought you to this place.
For many years after my siblings and I got married, we moved far from my parents’ home. We have the best parents and they created a wonderful home for us to grow up in, but our jobs and marriages took us far away. Whenever we drove the hours and hours to go visit my parents, the best part was arriving. They must have been waiting at the window because as we drove up the driveway, the door opened and they came out to greet us. Our kids squealed with joy and ran to them with outstretched arms. It seemed every hour was filled with laughter, joy, and conversation. Yet it was inevitable that we would have to leave again. This was the hardest part. It broke my heart each time we backed out of the driveway and turned to look out the window to see my parents waving from the porch…alone. We were leaving them, and their house would feel empty. (My eyes are filling up with tears as I write this.)
Moments like these are hard, but I learned a very valuable lesson from my mother. I called her as soon as I got home (this was before cell phones) and I asked how she was doing. She told me she sat down for a good cry as she talked to God, and then she got up and cleaned the house from top to bottom. It was therapeutic and she accomplished something practical at the same time. As she pounded the pillows into place and scrubbed the bathtub, her pent up frustration was released and soon praises to God fell from her lips. She thanked Him for her family and for the wonderful time we had together. Her house was back in order. Everything was back in its rightful place. She had the pictures to look at and the memories to reflect upon. Now life would go on and we would all choose to be happy. You see, the lesson I learned from my mother was, I always have a choice as to how I will respond.
She could have moped and complained. She could have walked around in the gloom of her loneliness and made my father’s life miserable. She could have complained to me and made me feel guilty for having moved away. Instead, she chose to find joy in whatever circumstance she found herself in. My mom chose to trust God to help her and to bless her.
Isaiah 41:10 NASB “Do not fear, for I am with you; Do not anxiously look about you, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, surely I will help you. Surely I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.”
In the novel I just published, Reluctant to Wed, the main character, Emma, is faced with a heartbreaking situation and she must choose how she will go on. Here is a line from the book that reveals Emma’s thought process: “Rehearsing that conversation in her mind would cause her to become bitter or paralyzed with self-pity. That was not for her. Life was meant to be lived to the fullest, and that’s what she would attempt to do.” Emma made the choice not to wallow in self-pity, but to move forward and attempt to find joy again.
It is in these difficult moments that we prove if we really trust God. It’s easy to talk about faith when everything is going well. But when the doctor report isn’t what we were hoping for or when the bills are piling up or when we lose a job — there are countless difficulties people face every day — it is in these moments we need to run to God and not turn away from Him in anger. God’s own Son was not spared the trials of this world. But God has promised to be with us through the trial.
John 16:33 “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”
I can tell you from personal experience that Jesus will give you supernatural peace and joy in the midst of what you are going through IF you will turn to Him and trust Him to carry you through whatever you are going through. NOTHING is too difficult for Him. He can take the situation that had the potential of destroying you, and turn it around for good. NOTHING is too difficult FOR HIM!
Jeremiah 32:17 “Ah Lord GOD! Behold, You have made the heavens and the earth by Your great power and by Your outstretched arm! Nothing is too difficult for You.”
Do you have a verse that has especially helped you at a very dark moment of your life. Please share it with me in the comments, or any other thoughts you may have. I’d love to hear from you.