We can only be strong for so long...

Another one of my creations (picture courtesy of Google):
Lyrics: "Broken and Beautiful" --Mark Schultz
 
"Jesus wept." --John 11:35.

"Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not put us to shame, because God's love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us." --Romans 5:3-5.

I don't know about you, but I've felt like the world was crashing down on me: family, friends, school, etc.: EVERYTHING seemed to be going wrong all at once. For a while, I didn't know if I could get up from these hurdles. Is this normal? Why can't I breathe? My heart is in a vice.
Lord, I don't understand why I'm going through this. Why would you allow this pain to go about in my life? What did I do to deserve this? What will I gain from all of this? It's unbearable! Will I ever make it?
We all have done it at one point in our lives. We have doubted Christ. We have experienced pain. We have experienced loss. We have experienced injustice. We have experienced hatred. IT IS OKAY! You are most certainly not being punished despite your thoughts toward the situation. Whether you believe it or not, God has a reason that you are facing these circumstances.

First, trials bring us closer to God:
"The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit" (Psalm 34:18).
Second, God knows that you can handle what He allows you to experience in your life:
"Then the LORD said to Satan, 'Have you consitered my servant Job? There is no one on earth like him; he is blameless and upright, a man who fears God and shuns evil.' 'Does Job fear God for nothing?' Satan replied. 'Have you not put a hedge around him and his household and everything he has? You have blessed the work of his hands, so that his flocks and herds are spread throughout the land. But stretch out your hand and strike eveything he has, and he will surely curse you to your face.' The LORD said to Satan, 'Very well, then, everything he has is in your hands, but on the man himself do not lay a finger.' Then Satan went out from the presence of the LORD" (Job 1: 8-12).
Third, things may not go the way you wish, but God has a plan, and His timing is perfect:
"He has mad everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the hearts of men; yet they cannot fathom what God has done from beginning to end" (Ecclesiastes 3:11).
Fourth, although it feels like you are alone, you're NOT:
"'Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the LORD your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you'" (Deuteronomy 31:6). 
"I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me" (Galatians 2:20).
 Fifth, it's going to be a hard walk--we're bound for obstacles:
"'Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, but only a few find it'" (Matthew 7:13-14).
 Sixth, the pain is not permanent:
"For his anger lasts only a moment, but his favor lasts a lifetime; weeping might stay for the night, but rejoicing comes in the morning" (Psalm 30:5).
Seventh, GOD LOVES YOU:
"For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him" (John 3:16-17).
Last (but most certainly not least), don't forget that God's there to listen to your worries if you're discouraged:
"Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you" (1 Peter 5:7).
"Elijah was a man just like us. He prayed earnestly that it would not rain, and it did not rain on the land for three and a half years" (James 5:17). 
Be encouraged today, friends! We have the privilege of getting to know and serving such an empathetic Savior. Amen.
 
Here's something I whipped up while writing this post...
























God bless!

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