But life isn't perfect in Michigan. Or Kenya. Or anywhere on this green earth. Trouble will find me wherever I go. Good thing I don't believe in the prosperity gospel or I would have given up long ago. Truth is, we are told in scripture, "In this world you WILL have trouble..." Why am I so surprised when it happens then?
Why do I think I can run from it? Somehow I need to find God in the midst of my trouble and allow Him to give me the peace that passes all understanding. I need to understand the theology of suffering - and realize that my suffering (as big or small as it may be) will produce in me perseverance and character. I can emerge from this time of hardship a better person if I allow suffering to do it's work.
So what am I doing? Well, here are a few things that I am trying to do (although I don't get it right all the time!):
- Fill my mind with TRUTH. In moments of hardship, it is so easy to listen to Satan's lies. So I need to combat those lies with truth from God's Word. I try to dwell on things that are "true, noble, right, pure, lovely and admirable..." (Phil. 4:8)
- Find someone to lift me up. Some days, I need someone else to do it for me. When I can't think of anything good, I go for a walk with a friend who can remind me of God's truth in my life. I need to surround myself with godly people who will point me to Jesus.
- Get some fresh air. It is so easy to hole up and wallow when I am down. I feel so much better after I get out and do what I need to do. Sometimes it is just doing the next thing - my job, the laundry, .....or just taking a walk to clear my head.
- Realize that this too shall pass. This hardship I am going through will not last forever. Hopefully someday (soon) I will be able to look back and see what God taught me through this rough patch in my life.