When you hit bottom, when dreams give way to disappointment, when all you’ve worked so hard for goes to pieces, you are tempted to despair. In extreme situations you may be tempted to just give up and stop trying.
That’s when you must remember that you were created for a purpose, and that purpose isn’t a single, one-time thing; it’s multifaceted and complex. As long as you live, there will be something more you can accomplish, something more you are meant to accomplish, and there is always more to learn in life.
Have you ever noticed how some people can stay afloat when engulfed in troubles and hardships, while others sink to the bottom? What sets the swimmers apart from the sinkers? From what I’ve seen, the biggest factor seems to be faith in God’s love. When those who understand how much God loves them find themselves in over their heads, they know He won’t let them drown. So, unlike those who don’t have such faith, they don’t wear themselves out struggling just to keep their heads above water—or worse, panic and go down all the quicker. Buoyed by their faith, the swimmers can concentrate their energy on getting to solid ground.
Life is often likened to going to school, and that’s a good analogy. God allows all sorts of things to happen in our lives to test us, to see how we’ll react to them, to teach us lessons, and to help us grow spiritually. His desire through all this, of course, is that we’ll apply ourselves, take the lessons to heart, learn from them, and live up to our full potential. In short, life’s tests are designed by Him to help us become the people He knows we can be.
The victories, battles, triumphs, tests, problems, and obstacles you face are all part of life. Everyone faces problems, but I am the answer man, and for each problem, there is always a solution, or many solutions. For each struggle, there is always a lesson and a victory. For each test, there is always a testimony. As My followers turn to Me and lean on Me and call on Me, I will never fail to answer and provide.
“What’s that?” my friend asked, pointing to a small brown stone on my coffee table. I had to smile, thinking how odd that plain little rock must look to her. Usually, people’s coffee tables showcase something valuable, or at least, beautiful. Instead, I had a plain old garden-variety rock.
Everyone has times in their life when they feel that they’ve reached bottom and that things couldn’t possibly get worse. For me, one of these times happened when I found myself having to cope with a totally unfamiliar lifestyle and surroundings in a village outside Belgrade.
I was one of the hopefuls that started last year with a brand-new planner. 2020 was full of promise, and I thought I had some control over the direction of the year. I had a long planned/postponed trip to see my family slotted for early spring, some home improvement plans, a saving/financial plan, plans for family vacations, etc.
My love will never leave you; you will never lose it, and it will never diminish. Rest in My love, for in My arms you will find comfort and peace for your spirit. My love will uphold you; as you abide in it, it will sustain you. There is tremendous power in My love. It covers a multitude of sins, changes hearts, renews spirits, casts out all fear, gives hope to those who despair, lifts those whose hands hang low, restores health, and brings light where once there was darkness.
“Miserable!” That was the only way to describe how I was feeling that day. My husband had had to travel—again!—And there I was alone with our four children. Finances were low, my health was bad, and my teenage daughter was going through a crisis. I prayed—oh, how I prayed—that Jesus would make things a little easier to bear!
Looking out my window at a grove of trees swaying in the gentle breeze, I recalled other times when Jesus had encouraged me to hold on until He could work things out.
I see your struggles and hear your calls for help. When you feel all alone, I am with you. I feel your heartaches, and wait for you to draw near to Me in prayer. Come into My sanctuary, into that secret place that you and I can share. There you can find a reprieve from the worries, the cares, and the confusion. There I can restore your feeling of purpose and infuse you with strength to go on.