"We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair." - 1 Cor. 4:8 (NIV).
Difficulties, disappointments, adversity, trials, tribulations - whatever you want to call them - we all have them in our lives. I don't think I'm easily discouraged by them or I don't stay that way for long when I'm faced with them. At least not anymore. In the past, I've been known to be negative about my troubles, to complain, to get angry, to hold a grudge...for a really, really long time. And when things got better, to think it was something I had done. But, as I began to faithfully, excitedly and enthusiastically attend church, pray and study my Bible, my perspective has been changing. I used to see difficulties as punishment from God for my sins. My idea of God was of a judging, vengeful, punishing God....and I deserved to be punished because I was a sinner. Boy, was I wrong!! Not about being a sinner, because I am. But about God. He is a God who loves me, who sent His Son, Jesus Christ, to die for my sins because of the great love He has for me - for all of us. He wants me to lean on Him, to pray, to turn my thoughts to Him, to trust Him to guide me through the dark times. Not myself...HIM! He is a God of infinite possibilities. Instead of allowing myself to become discouraged by the difficulties that life throws my way, I find myself turning to God to lead me through. I am learning to be thankful for the hard times and beginning to see them as blessings in disguise. I am beginning to understand that God uses my problems to bring me closer to Him, to honor and glorify Him. The peace & hope that He gives me, knowing I don't have to face anything alone, that He is always present, always able and willing to help me, is worth more than anything else in this world. If you're facing discouragement right now, He is waiting for you to turn to Him for direction and guidance. He is waiting to give you a renewed spirit of peace and hope. Allow Him to lead you through to the blessing waiting on the other side.
"Every misfortune, every failure, every loss may be transformed. God has the power to transform all misfortunes into 'God-sends'." (Mrs. Charles E. Cowman)
Dear Lord, Thank You for each difficult circumstance that comes my way. Teach me, through them, to lean on You, the God of all possibilities, for guidance, peace and hope. Help me to see them as blessings in disguise. Amen.