This week’s blog is a continuation of last week’s “Joy for the Journey”, which can be accessed by clicking here.
We all have a day that defines us … we all remember a moment in life when the world stopped turning for all of the wrong reasons.
It’s interesting, isn’t it? Each one of us is able to reminisce about the sweet days in life and talk unceasingly about the precious moments of living … but when it comes to verbalizing the very worst day of one’s life …suddenly there are no words.
There is no need for conversation … or for communication. Perhaps, as you ponder the unique and unrelenting agony of that day, all that you are able to do is to look into the distance and remember what it felt like all over again.
All you can do is shake your head in repeated disbelief.
However, there are some miraculous choices that I have discovered in my journey that have moved me from a place of unrivaled disbelief to a place of hope and even peace.
May I share some of them with you today?
Last week, I encouraged you to do three things when your life has been ravaged by some unexpected storm.
Just say, “Jesus!”
Hold your Bible.
Remember the last miracle.
However, as I was finishing my blog last week, I knew that there were several more powerful choices that would help you get your footing as you wrestled with emotional pain, searing disappointment and relentless grief. So today … let me share a few more life-giving decisions with you.
Find a trusted group of friends who will stand in faith with you and pray for you.
Carefully select this team of valiant warriors and then send an e-mail or a text message to the entire group inviting them to pray for you and with you. Ask them to send Scriptures or the lyrics to songs as you endeavor to hold onto the anchor of hope during the storm that is assailing your very life.
This group of caring and faith-filled friends should be your “safe place” as you heal from the aftermath of the vicious onslaught of the blast that has damaged your life.
Friends … we all need them. We especially need them when life is at its very worst.
We all need trusted men and women who will hold up our arms when the battle is fierce.
We are unconsciously desperate for brothers and sisters who are focused on the victory when we, the wounded, are focused on the battle.
I love this small piece of information that the Holy Spirit and Paul included in the letter to the Church at Corinth:
“But God, who comforts the depressed, comforted us by the coming of Titus.” – II Corinthians 7:6
Find a Titus or two … or three or four … and allow these dear friends to comfort you until the pain and the depression subside.
Another important component of your ability to navigate the tsunami of circumstances is to find a fighting Scripture and then declare it … memorize it … sing it … pray it … think about it … until you experience the breakthrough of God’s goodness in your life.
Just three days into my battle with cancer, the Lord gave me this Scripture in my daily quiet time, “For never again will the wicked one pass through you; he is cut off completely.” – Nahum 1:15b
That Scripture became my very life-line during the 5 surgeries, the horrific treatments and the dreaded tests that filled the calendar of my life for over 2 years.
Open your Bible, my friend, and read the comforting Scriptures in Psalms or in the Book of John. Ask God for a Scripture that you can literally cling to - no matter how strong the wind is and no matter how high the waves are. The Scripture will save you time after time after time.
When the winds of change take your breath away … your fighting Scripture will breathe the breath of God into your empty lungs.
Not only will your fighting Scripture revive you … but it will also propel you into a mindset of victory even when your circumstances refuse to change.
Ask the Holy Spirit to give you a fighting Scripture and use it often!
And, then, please … please … please … don’t forget to worship!
As the waves of emotional pain continue to beat upon your heart, if you are physically unable to sing … then just lift your hands to the Father.
You can “think” the words to well-loved choruses … even when you can’t utter a sound.
The horrific news that may have caused you to lose your voice for a period of time should never have the ability to squelch the song in your heart.
Listen to worship music especially when your tongue has been muted by pain.
Lift your hands in the air even while the tears are coursing down your cheeks.
May I just gently encourage you to participate in the worship experience even when you don’t “feel” like it?
Worship is the one of the greatest healing tools given to us by God the Father.
Worship doesn’t stuff the pain of your life but it cleanses the pain of your life!
Worship ushers the presence of God into your pain so just do it!
And finally, declare truth over your devastation.
One of my dear friends told me not to ask questions like, “How did this happen?”
Or, “What did I do to deserve this?”
This wise sister reminded me that those questions are futile because they do not lead to hope. She told me to get God’s heart on the matter and then declare that truth over the destruction.
This seasoned warrior of the faith also advised me that God was not worried about my situation … that He was still a good, good Father … and that this was not the end of my story.
Isn’t that powerful truth?!
And so, rather than discuss your disappointment from the well of your emotions … when you talk about your pain … talk about the truth!
My God is well able!
There is no mountain that He cannot move!
Nothing is impossible to God!
God is not finished with me yet!
He will indeed accomplish what concerns me!
So now you know … this is how we fight our battles …
Just say, “Jesus!”
Hold your Bible.
Remember the last miracle.
Find some friends.
Fight with the Word of God.
Thanks for listening to my heart this week. As you know by now, my heart is truly not a perfect heart but it is a heart that is filled to overflowing with gratitude for the life I have been given and for the people who walk with me. And, it continues to be a heart that is relentlessly chasing after God and all that He is!