hardships, happiness, trials and joy.

I think I can start with a simple thank you.

Thank you to every friend, relative, person who has poured into me. Who has encouraged me, spoke life back into me. Who has taken time to tell me something as simple as they are mindful of me, and keeping me in their prayers. Thank you.

Even if I do not know each of you personally I am thanking you. Thank you for being apart of the family, and apart of the team. Something I am most grateful is the people God has placed in my life, knowing I would need them at certain times. Whether it is enjoying a cup of coffee together, a quick phone call or an email, thank you. There is nothing that we can do more for each other than lift each other in prayer.

I have exciting news to share. But… that will come within the week! Someone commented in advance that the good news was the Tar Heels as the 2017 National Champs! And yes that is good news, but not the news I was going to post about!

What can I possibly blog about life lately. Life lately has been hard. But through the hardships and trials of life I have seen and tasted God’s joy and promises for my life. I walked into his love, and reminded myself that the foundation of my faith in Christ is built upon his perfect love that casts out all fear, all darkness and again I found myself complete in Christ. Love in his perfect being.

I didn’t cross that out because it isn’t true. It is because it was what I could have written to take the easy way out. And I don’t ever want to do that. Yes it all is true, but it didn’t quite just happen like that. There is more behind those words…

Now not to sugarcoat anything. These past couple of months I felt so down I wondered how I could ever pick myself up again. Sometimes I wonder how honest I want to be since this is a blog, that is published, not knowing who is reading this on the other side of the screen. But I want to be honest, because if one person can relate to this or find the hope they too are missing, or in a place of questioning the same things I was. I need to be completely honest.

What I can say is that from December to now I have learned more than I think I wanted to learn. Sometimes I felt like saying to God, I think I’ve been stretched and endured enough this month, and yet something more would happen.

Unintentionally, I promise I kept learning. I can say that these past four months have been the hardest months so far. (And I am sure harder moments will come) but God uses these moments in life to build us up stronger so that we can endure the next situation.

I felt like I was getting attacked in every aspect of my life, and I felt honestly hopeless, sad and forgotten about. I felt at times God forgot about me. (here is the thing he NEVER forgot about me, and he’ll never forget about you) I know that God uses EVERYTHING for our good. But in these moments I couldn’t imagine how that could be possible.

God allows things to happen to us, but he will use all of it for his good in our lives. Nothing goes wasted. God promises us. He’s got us. Even when we are questioning that. He still got us.

Lets take a minute to process that. I’m sure many of you are feeling confused as to why God would allow something “bad” to happen to someone. At least every character in the bible had to endure hardship, and endured moments of hopelessness, confusion and bitterness towards God. Sometimes we only want to focus on the victory, without teaching and appreciating the hardship that built faith that lead to that victory.

We are all human, we all have feelings. Feelings of hopelessness, doubt, insecurity, anger confusion and the list can go on and on and on… but I’ll stop here because…

these are all feelings. They too will pass, these too can change in an instant. God uses these bad and terrible hardships for our good. To teach us something we didn’t exactly know before. To show us how faithful and good he really is. There isn’t exactly a time frame on these lessons, some last longer than others, but I know that no matter what it is or looks like in your life, if you keep fighting and believing that it will work out for YOUR good to BUILD your faith it will.

If you don’t believe me that is okay. I have been in that same place of not wanting to believe that. But I am writing about something I didn’t want to write about, because at moments I wasn’t sure I would ever have gotten out of it. But I did, not because I was able to, but because God provided for me, he knew what I needed and he saw me through. He kept pursuing my heart, even when I didn’t “feel” it.

Sometimes we go through seasons of dryness, or sometimes we go through seasons of life that seem so hard, sad and overwhelming we start to question where this God we call ours is. I want to say that there are seasons of life that we don’t “feel” God around us. We could be in a dark place wondering where he is, confused because we don’t “feel him.”

It’s a good thing our faith isn’t based upon feeling, am I right.

Our faith is based in KNOWING.

Hence…

“I will walk by faith, even when I cannot see.” 2 Corinthians 5:7

We never have to doubt God because feeling isn’t apart of it. Our emotions change, something as simple as a sickness could change the way we are feeling that day, but it doesn’t ever change that we know our God does not sleep or slumber, it doesn’t change the fact that we know that Christ died and rose again so that we could live and be overcomes and claim the victory! All because of Christ. All because we have victory over all of these situations in his name. And Through these hardships I see happiness and joy, every morning, in the faces of the children who have new hope and life based in Christ.

For anyone who isn’t exactly “feeling it” don’t be frustrated at God. Don’t point your finger back at him, wondering where he has been. He has never left you. He will never leave you. He holds you in the palm of his hand. You are his. And he is yours. I am not sure who is reading this, and if you can relate or not, but a friend recently sent me this and at that moment it was exactly what I needed to hear. This kind of captures everything I have been writing about and explains it in a much shorter way 😉

“Sometimes farmers allow fields to lay fallow, or empty for a season so that in the future the field will bear a greater harvest. It is our privilege to depend, and rest on God for contentment in every season.” 

Philippians 4:11 “I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances.”

For anyone who feels like they are walking down a road and wondering where God is, or how far you are to get to where he is. Don’t grow weary in this process. Our faith is not based upon feeling, it is based upon knowing. God has never left you, and he never will.

Our greatest reminders of this lay within our own lives. I can look back and see this to be a testament in my own life. And I am sure many of you can. And if you are going through something believe that it will soon become a testament to God and how he worked it out for your good, how he turned the situation around so he will get all the glory.

And now after writing that I can insert the part that I crossed out in the beginning so we understand what it took to get through to write this.

“But through the hardships and trials of life I have seen and tasted God’s joy and promises for my life. I walked into his love, and reminded myself that the foundation of my faith in Christ is built upon his perfect love that casts out all fear, all darkness and again I found myself complete in Christ. Love in his perfect being.”

Isn’t it exciting to know that God is working it out for us, even when we cannot “see” or “feel” it. I would encourage anyone to reach out to someone you are mindful of. Pray for others because prayer CHANGES things. and simply know that you are loved. Life is hard, but life is awesome and so are you.

Dev

p.s. I took a little break  blogging as you could tell, I didn’t want to be writing things that I didn’t feel lead to write. Thanks for understanding, I have a lot to catch you up on these past 2 months! I always make it an effort to blog things from my heart and never want to sugarcoat this journey. Thanks for being apart of it 🙂

One thought on “hardships, happiness, trials and joy.

  1. Cryptic…Dev I hope you are taking care of yourself! Can be very stressful to throw yourself completely into a business or new endeavor, let alone a spiritual cause like PNN. The work-life balance is a difficult one to maintain.

    Like

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