I've heard it said so many times- "Bad things come in threes” or “When it rains it pours!” Why is it that when things go wrong, they seem to keep going in that direction? Why does it seem to never be just one thing? Even when something very difficult happens, it seems there’s always something equally troubling that comes right behind it. We hear song lyrics referring to going "deep in the valley;" and I can't count how many times people have said to me that it's darkest before the dawn.
So what does this mean to a Christian who is trying to always do the right thing? Why does God let us go through so much, that at times it feels like we could fall apart?
I don't have the answers to those questions, nor do I think I ever will. I am however learning a lot from my difficult experiences. Many refer to these times as hitting a bottom or falling down. I see it more like being stuck in the middle. The reason I see it that way is because I think the hardest part is accepting that things will not be the same yet not knowing what lies ahead. When I can't see anything looking back or looking forward, it makes me look upward from the middle that I seem to be stuck in.
So many things in my life are in question right now and there are an equally vast number of ways I can look at my situation. Honestly speaking, I think I have considered almost every perspective already. I've had my share of meltdowns, and I've had times where I haven't felt much at all. Through it all, and it is far from over, I have come to these realizations.
1- No person can understand or go through these trials with me.
2- Nothing I do will change the outcome of things that are outside of my control.
3- I realized that even though I thought I had surrendered everything to God, I never fully surrendered.
4- God is the only one who is with me and who can help me, and he always will be there.
5- No matter how things turn out, God will continue to take care of me.
6- God will use everything for the good.
7- God will use all of these things to place me where he wants me to be.
I find that when I am weak and feel helpless God finds ways of speaking to me. Over and over in so many different settings I have heard the same scripture passage,"but those that hope in the Lord , they will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint." Isaiah 40:31
So here I am in the middle of an incredible process of change that is not of my choosing and for which I do not know the outcome. This situation reminds me more than ever that everything I have and everything good is from God. This also means that everything I have is His to give and to take away. Somehow I find peace in that knowledge. I feel connected to Him in a deeper, more intimate way than ever before. When I talk to Him, I find myself telling Him that I trust Him and I really mean it. That is huge for someone who has been betrayed in such horrendous ways in the past. I never thought I could completely trust even God, and now I do. I am experiencing "the peace that surpasses all understanding.”
Lord, I don't know where you are taking me. I don't have any answers. I don’t even have a clue. I do know that You have a perfect plan for me. I know that You protect me and take care of me. You show me time and time again how strong You are in my weakness. You have also shown me how you use even the most painful experiences for good. When I am stuck in middle with no one to look to but You, I grow and get stronger. I see how to live without striving; I don't have the strength to do that now. Rest in You Lord is the best kind of rest. So I go on, one day at a time, and I fully experience that day. It is very uncomfortable to feel so out of control, but through this situation my Lord, I know that you are in control, and that gives me comfort. Thank you Lord for being here with me and never leaving my side. Amen.
"My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness." Corinthians 12:9
"Come to me all who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, rest for your souls." Matthew 11:28, 29
"And we know that all good things work together for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose." Romans 8:28