By Georgia (Jo) Kent
“So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day. For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.” 2 Corinthians 4:16-18
How do we remain joyful when inevitable tragedy faces us? We cannot expect to go through difficult times without feeling the impact of such events. We can expect to experience sadness with loss. How does joy come from trusting in the Lord in times of difficulty? God’s ways are not our ways. We may not comprehend the notion that joy can come from despair, love can grow from forgiveness, or life can grow out of death, yet Christ showed us all of these things.
“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,”declares the Lord.” Isaiah 55:8
God does not promise us that we will be exempt from trouble or sorrow. Tears will come, have faith, one day soon, deep inside there will be a joy that is difficult to understand. It is a joy from God, produced by the Holy Spirit. Share your tears with God. Sometimes, the tears of grief are really a prayer, even when there are no words. Your tears are so precious to God that He records each one of them and stores them in a bottle.
“You have collected all my tears and preserved them in your bottle! You have recorded every one in your book.” Psalms 56:8
What a wonderful God we serve. He is a God of infinite love and is ever present to give us peace in our darkest days, yes, even when we face illness and death. The blessing in our sorrow that is born on the battlefield is embraced by God’s beautiful, intimate presence. When we are suffering, he comes near, picks us up in His loving arms and comforts us, “And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:7
Lord, we know You are the source of our comfort. You’ve walked where we walk, you’ve grieved as we grieve. Keep us always mindful of Your presence. I trust that You will take that which brings sorrow in our life and make it a source of joy. Amen
Footprints in the Sand
One night I dreamed I was walking along the beach with the Lord.
Many scenes from my life flashed across the sky.
In each scene I noticed footprints in the sand.
Sometimes there were two sets of footprints,
other times there were one set of footprints.
This bothered me because I noticed
that during the low periods of my life,
when I was suffering from
anguish, sorrow or defeat,
I could see only one set of footprints.
So I said to the Lord,
“You promised me Lord,
that if I followed you,
you would walk with me always.
But I have noticed that during
the most trying periods of my life
there have only been one
set of footprints in the sand.
Why, when I needed you most,
you have not been there for me?”
The Lord replied,
“The times when you have
seen only one set of footprints,
is when I carried you.”