It’s just been one of those times where you get hit broadside with news you don’t want to hear. Two very different situations. Both close to us.
It’s the kind of feeling where you think you can’t catch your next breath. And then you come up for air and remind yourself that your God has not changed. He is faithful. He is good. And yes, He even has a plan in the midst of the hard stuff. You simply can’t see it but you know it’s true because of who God is. Still…..getting it from your head to your heart can be hard. Checking emotions, capturing run away thoughts and refusing to be overcome with negativity is not easy in these situations. But this is where our faith makes a difference. Trusting God in our low times makes a difference.
A friend sent me an email out of the blue and encouraged me to praise God seven times during the day. She has no clue about my heart ache right now. And so God leads me into a time of praise and worship. Praising in the midst of pain changes things. It does. I can’t explain it. I can’t even say my heart was fully engaged in the praise – like my mind and heart believe it but as it comes out of my mouth it feels more like a damp statement being uttered. Yet still it affirms who God is and there is power in speaking the Name and attributes of God. Eventually our hearts catch up. And he accepts our praise – when we’re fully engaged and even when it takes a force of our will to get it out. That’s the kind of God we have. He loves us right where we are and accepts us no matter what.
Fast forward to yesterday. My sweet Sophie helped usher a classmate into a relationship with Jesus on the playground at school. Both girls were so excited. This has been a work in process as the girl’s Mom has told me before she thought her daughter was ready to accept Jesus but they were waiting for the right time. Well the time came and it was clearly the time because there was not a doubt in her mind she wanted to become a Christian. She was ready. The Holy Spirit had primed her heart and as our friend and Woodlands Camp director Jon Estes says, “she was low hanging fruit” and Sophie snatched it right up. She asked her friend if she was saved (because she really wanted her to be her sister in Christ if she wasn’t) and when she said, “no” Sophie told her what it meant to be a Christian and asked her if she wanted to pray to accept Jesus as her Savior. Her friend said yes and Sophie took her to her teacher to pray with her. And there on the playground our sweet little friend started her new life in Jesus.
Now that will put everything else into perspective.
Yes, the pain of difficult situations are still there but the fact that God picked this time for our daughter to help lead someone to Christ couldn’t have been more perfect. It was like a bundle of grace waiting around the corner. God saved this girl because He died for her and it was part of His plan including the timing. But I can’t help but know He knew we needed our chin to be lifted up. To be reminded that this life is all about pointing others to Jesus.
And so in the midst of hard times I seek to trust and praise God knowing He loves me and will make good of all things.
7 things I’m praising God for today:
- That He is Savior
- That God is my Provider
- Praising Him that He sees all our situations
- Praising God that His word is active and alive
- Praising God for divine intervention
- Praising God that He is capable of anything
- Praising God that He is sufficient for all our need