All week we have been dwelling on trials…and, in the interest of full disclosure, I must admit the actual day to day trials were starting to steal my joy – not the way to go if you are journeying toward Reclaiming Your Joy! So, in this post, I want to concentrate on up-side of difficulties. This is the reward of Christian living; it is sort of the “how” of: we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose (Rom 8:28).
Lorraine Hill writes about rejoicing during trials…
- We rejoice because trials prove our relationship to the Lord.
- We rejoice because we know that trials develop our character.
- We also rejoice because we know that God is always with us no matter what we endure.
- We rejoice because trials enable us to know God more fully.
- We rejoice because we know that our trials will provide an eternal harvest for us.
Yesterday was hard for me. I overindulged – in my feelings. As the day wore on, I began to struggle because, what started as a small thought creeping in, threatened to overwhelm me. Thank the Lord for Paula. I have a wonderful sister in Christ and we confide in each other and encourage one another and speak hard truths when necessary. We live miles and miles apart, but hold each other close in our hearts. She is like a stream in the desert to me. God provides for me so well when I am thirsty. She is not the only one. My mom is too. And Dawn and Amy and Denine – your comments have come when I have been discouraged and spurred me on…and this morning, I had a wonderful email from Lorraine Hill, the author of our book – what an amazing encouragement from the LORD! Whenever I am weary and begin to feel lost in the wilderness, God refreshes me. I see Him with me. I have learned most about His goodness from my difficult times and, because of that, I know He is working in my life and that everything is going according to plan (not mine, but His). This brings me joy and reminds me to have an eternal perspective rather than a temporal one! Yet God still provides me for me in this temporal life, because He knows when I am crushed, and will not let me stay there.
But now, this is what the LORD says…
“Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine.
When you pass through the waters, I will be with you;
and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you.
When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze..
“Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past.
See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it?
I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland. (Is 43:1-3, 18-19).
Who or what are your streams in the desert? Here is one for today… just remember who the LORD is: Because of the LORD’s great love we are not consumed, for His compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness (Lam 3:22-23).
JustaGirl…just like you