I had been working with a couple through a great number of difficulties. Both were very committed to the process and working hard. He was fighting his own battles both past and present; she was fighting hers. At one point she was particularly distressed, struggling to keep moving forward. It was then a thought came to mind to share with them:
“Be encouraged. You are only in the middle of the story!”
I don’t know where you are at today in your life or marriage as you read this blog. You may be going through a difficult time, hoping for a good ending, but unsure how it can happen. You may be full of emotions including that of uncertainty–because you don’t know how your story is going to turn out. What do you do? Here are four things to keep in mind:
1. Your emotions are real.
They are part of who God made us to be. Start to deal with them simply by feeling them. We get in trouble when we ignore what we feel on the one hand or let our feelings dictate our behavior on the other hand. Learn to understand what it is you are feeling and why, through journaling or talking to a trusted friend. There are reasons why we feel what we feel that make sense.
2. Ask yourself: “what might God be saying to me right now?”
Henry Blackabee, in his book entitled Experiencing God, says that God is always up to something. Take a moment and step back from all that is happening in your life right now. What might God be up to? What lesson could He be wanting you to learn? What insight is He hoping you might gain? What is He seeking to reveal about His nature or yours?
3. Also ask yourself: what promises has God made that I must keep in mind?
I often think of verses in the Bible like:
“The LORD himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.” Deuteronomy 31:8 NIV
“For just as the heavens are higher than the earth, so my ways are higher than your ways and my thoughts higher than your thoughts, says the Lord.” Isaiah 55:9 NLT
“And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans 8:38,39 NLT
“Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight.” Proverbs 3:5,6 NASB
4. Do all you can. And trust in God.
In the book of James we read of the importance of faith AND works in the Christians’ journey through life. It is not one or the other; it is both. In whatever difficulties you encounter, do all you can to work through them. Go to the doctor. See a counselor. Talk with a friend. Get wisdom from those around you. Pray hard. Learn everything you can. And in the end trust God and His promises. He alone is our Rock, our Refuge, and our Hope in this world and the next.
Wherever you are at in your current struggles, remember, you are only in the middle of the story. There is more to come…more to the story. And God will get you through!
What promises from God have helped you get through difficulties? You can leave a response below: