Sometimes life can be so hard that you feel emotionally paralyzed and stuck even though you have read and studied God’s promises in scripture. That’s the difference between knowing and applying what you know. Applying what you know truly empowers you to move forward in your life regardless of what’s going on no matter how impossible or hopeless things may seem.
I’ve shared that Pastor G and I had to endure very hard times of being hungry and homeless at the worst possible times weatherwise. Without Him, we literally could have frozen to death while having to sleep in our car during the dead of winter. Yet, here I type. We were blessed with very warm huge blankets and two dogs with very warm bodies that we kept on our laps under the blankets. One night, we had been offered shelter but were told that the dogs were not welcome. We opted to stay in the car with the dogs because we were reasonably concerned that they would not live through the night if we weren’t there. We had little money, so there was little gas in the car to occasionally start the engine and run the heater. God was with us all that frigid night. We had literally placed ourselves in His hands and told Him that we were His whether we lived or died.
We kept remembering heroes of faith in scripture like Joseph who received promises and yet was sold into slavery in a foreign land far away from the family that was supposed to bow down to him. Yet Joseph kept close to God and lived His way no matter where he found himself. God was with him every step of the way. He was the head slave in Potiphar’s house. Even in prison, he was in a leadership position. He must have been terribly disappointed when Pharoah’s butler was released from prison and seemingly forgot about his word to discuss Joseph with Pharoah so he could be released. But God didn’t forget. Scripture doesn’t say how much time had passed, but He gave Pharoah a dream that none of his advisors could interpret, and that’s when God brought Joseph to the butler’s mind. God’s promise came to pass. Joseph’s brothers appeared before him unaware that the second most powerful man in Egypt was their brother.
No matter how had the circumstances of your life, God is with you, too. He will always make a way. Believe Him! Trust Him!
Scripture: Romans 8:35-39, Hebrews 13:5
35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? 36 As it is written:
“For Your sake we are killed all day long;
We are accounted as sheep for the slaughter.”
37 Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. 38 For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, 39 nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
5 Let your conduct be without covetousness; be content with such things as you have. For He Himself has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.”
Father God, giver and sustainer of life, thanks so much for being with me in that season of extreme hardship and difficulty. Thanks for the promises in Your word and for being faithful to make them come to pass in my life in Your time and plan for me. Thanks for equipping me with what I needed physically, emotionally and spiritually while I waited for Your deliverance. Thanks for doing the same for those whose lives are also hard that you sent to these pages for encouragement. May You not only send comforters and encouragers across their path, but also the relief from whatever hard time they endure right now. Nothing is impossible for You, and may all trust in Your love and promises for us all. In Jesus’ name, amen.
Things to Think, Pray and Journal About
1. How much do you rely on God to deliver you from your life’s hard times?
2. How has being delivered from your life’s hard times changed you?
3. What promises has God made to you that have yet to be fulfilled? How does trusting Him to fulfill them help you to move forward with your life?
copyright 2014, Pastors George and Sharon Billington, All Rights Reserved