“And after you have suffered a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to his eternal glory in Christ, will himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you.” 1 Peter 5:10
The title of this blog post was actually a text I got from my mom the other day. I could write a whole blog post, in fact a whole book, about my mom’s wisdom, but I’ll try to give you just a glimpse. She has the balance between encouragement/uplifting advice, and sometimes slapping us kids upside the head when we need it (metaphorically, of course. And always in love).
Recently God has shown me that everybody has their own thorn in their side. (Check out 2 Corinthians 12:7-10!) He has put me in the path of several friends in need of encouragement, and reminded me that everyone is fighting a battle of some kind.
How can I put this gracefully? Sometimes life absolutely knocks us down. And kicks us when we are down. Repeatedly. There are utterly unfair things that happen to us. Things often (usually) do not go as planned and there is nothing we can do about it. Life can bring us pain we don’t think we can ever withstand or get past. My mom tells it like it is, “It stinks.”
But that’s not the end of the sentence. This is: “BUT GOD is faithful.” The truth is that there is always, always, always, something to be grateful for. Period. A lot of times we focus on the light at the end of the tunnel, that God has something great in store when these struggles are over. This is true, but God is also calling us to thank Him, praise Him, and love Him in our storms. Right in the middle of the pouring rain. Because God is still God no matter what we are facing.
But it’s hard to be grateful in the pouring rain. Because we’re human. And to the rest of the world, we probably look pretty goofy. But following Jesus is everything this world is not (Romans 12:2, check it). We signed up to look goofy when we said ‘yes’ to Him. As children of God, we’ve GOT to thank him no matter what. We’ve got to put on a rain coat, trust that the rain is a part of His purposes, and know that he always ALWAYS keeps His promises (Cue the rainbow).
The best part about the image above, is that the end point for reality is much higher than what we planned. Our journey is going to be unbearable at times, but the end result that God has in store for us is greater than anything we could have imagined. That promise is true for me and for you and for all God’s children, including the gypsies in Romania that I can’t wait to meet!
“Look among the nations and see; wonder and be astounded. For I am doing a work in your days that you would not believe if told.” Habakkuk 1:5