Are you swimming in a sea of trials? Do you need encouragement? Let’s walk in faith and trust God. Come learn how seeking God in difficult times will provide you with new opportunities.
Seeking God in Difficult Times
Does life have you flying by the seat of your pants or are you facing a new reality full of unknowns?
We know for certain anxiety, worry, and stress can exhaust our minds and cause physical harm. This is not new news to us. But our minds can not seem to break free from the storm. And we can’t figure out how to implement what the experts suggest to do. They say: “Stop worrying. Stop stressing. Search for peace within yourself.” – Ummm, inner peace? It sounds like a lost, hidden treasure. A real case only Indiana Jones would be able to find. A secret peace jewel found in the depths of our souls. Please let’s figure this out because who doesn’t want inner peace.
But how? All you do is eat, sleep and awake thinking about how your life could be impacted by this one change. THIS ONE CHANGE (you scream)! The experts don’t tell you how to make your choices. They only say, stop worrying and find your peace. And Indiana Jones is nowhere to be found.
Now plagued with a tremendous burden or unforeseen circumstance
You are ready to break free from the chains of life’s burdens. But you can not stop contemplating about the outcome? You say: “Please take this off my plate?” And yet you still struggle with this life-changing event — “it could be a matter of life or death”. And right now, it all you can focus on.
Taking control of the wheel is the only way you can assure there will be a good outcome. Or is it?
You find yourself questioning your very steps. Even analyzing the outcome of each of your moves. This is not who you want to be.
You are ready for a change. You are tired of being tired.
My friend, I have been there.
I can remember a time when my kids were young (ages 3 and 2); just newly diagnosed with thyroid cancer. At the time, I was working as a full-time RN. My shifts were 12-hours long, but by the time I got home, I was away from my family for over 14 hours. I worked every weekend. This allowed me to be home with my kids during the week, while my husband worked during the week. I say this was a pretty smart move on our part. We saved a lot of money. Not needing daycare. We had our system, and it worked really well for our young family.
Then it hit! Life changed, and it changed fast!
Thyroid cancer… my mind devastated.
Suddenly, I had a million doctor visits. The diagnosis was a blessing and a curse. You see, I didn’t have time to think about the possibilities of my health, but selfishly thought; “How the heck am I going to do all this?” The whirlwind of emotions hijacked my thoughts. In my head, I just got served the biggest plate of devastation.
This two-word diagnosis overextended our schedule; our well-oiled machine no more.
I sat focusing only on the here and now; selfishly.
Over and over again, praying to God.
What did I do to deserve this? Pleading to God for help.
I have felt myself ask him time and time again, “just tell me what to do and I will do it!” Really, I ask, “It would be so helpful, pretty please with a cherry on top.” or “I will just do this one thing, really I promise.”
Goodness, how much easier life would be if He would just tell us what to do.
But this is not the way God handles situations. This would be the easy way out. God doesn’t negotiate, but what he does is bless us for our faithfulness to Him.
At first, I began to pray; seeking God through my devastation. Asking for the abilities to overcome our new schedule. Instead, God showed me a new pathway. Life made a lot more sense.
Now don’t shoot the messenger.
When hardships become your priority, you remove God from having the authority.
Seeking God in difficult times can not be a self-centered practice. We must look at our current situations and vast in His greatness. He is our greatest counselor. Remember, God keeps no office hours. He is available 24-hours a day 7-days a week. The best part of all, there is no co-pay needed. We can freely speak from our hearts. The veil was torn in two, so he could have a personal relationship with you (Matthew 27:51).
It is time to redirect our focus. We need to move from the “whoa is me” phase to the “look at all those possibilities” phase.
And this is exactly what I did. Instead of looking at everything I was going through (new treatments, radioactive therapy, all the body scans, blood work, etc) I turned to God and changed my way of thinking. Opportunities arose in ways I never thought. The birth of my first blog, InspiringSavings.com began; now I can look back and see the dots on the map. This diagnosis was more than just about affliction, it was about new blessings.
“A faithful man will abound with blessings, But he who hastens to be rich will not go unpunished.” – Proverbs 28:20
The Possibilities of Seeking God in Difficult Times
It is true; we get blocked in our thinking and allow situations to control us. We have a hard time letting go of those worries and thoughts because we are afraid of what is yet to come. It is human nature for us to control. As Christians we are different, we have faith in a mighty God.
It states in Isaiah 40:31 “but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint”.
What are you facing today? What worries are you allowing to take your mind and actions captive?
Viewing each difficulty as an opportunity and not a hindrance will open your eyes and heart. Thank Jesus for this time. Understanding your new learning opportunities will no longer deprive you of your willingness to be taught.
Remember, Jesus Christ died on the cross for YOU.
That means we are forgiven; released from the fear of worry and anguish. One of my favorite Bible verses comes from Matthew 13:45 – 46. It states; “Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant looking for fine pearls. When he found one of great value, he went away and sold everything he had and bought it.“
Our great Lord purchased us. He sold everything for us. You are not a nobody. You are Chosen! We are each like a precious and fine pearl to Him. We are special. In fact, so special He knows how many hairs we have on our head.
It is time to see the opportunities and to Praise God during our difficult situations. You will no longer need, to be held captive.
God is faithful. He comforts us so we may comfort others.
How to Seek God in Difficult Times
Need some guidance on where to start? These four simple steps will help you feel closer to God and more refreshed in your walk with him.
Spend Time in prayer.
Start your day with God. All it takes is 5 to 10 minutes. You can set your alarm to wake you up in the morning just a few minutes than normal. Thank him for the start of a new day. Ask him to show you the opportunities in your situation. Continue to pray and talk with him throughout your day. Let’s really start seeking God in difficult times.
Read your Bible.
There are stories upon stories in the Bible about many influential people going through devastating trials and how great opportunities arose. Imprisoned multiple times for preaching the good news, Paul was an influential man. As a result, he didn’t let prison stop his mission. He could see the opportunities and continued to write too many churches.
Ask others to pray for you.
Support from Christian friends can be exponential. Prayer is one of our greatest privileges. The Bible encourages us to pray for others. In fact, Paul repeatedly ask others to pray for him and his peers as they sought to tell others about the new life they could have in Christ (2 Thessalonians 3:1)
Focus on God’s goodness and His promises.
Take the written words you have learned about from the Bible and focus on them. It may be helpful to write them down in places you will see them often. Place a sticky note on the fridge, bathroom mirror, the car dashboard, or even your desk at work. Continually seeing his promises for us throughout the day will give us encouragement.
My prayer for you
Dear Heavenly Father,
We thank you for the faithfulness of our people. We thank you for your word and the confidence we have in your promises. I ask you to prepare the way and give light to the opportunities in such difficult times. Allow your word to be known. Let us see how precious we are to you, just as in fine pearls. Allow us not to dwell in our current situation, but to find joy knowing you have a great plan for our lives. Thank you for loving us right where we are. All this we ask in your name – Amen!
If you are looking for rest. Read Learning to live in God’s Rest – Letting Go of the Chaos.