“Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.”
The past 3 weeks of my existence have been challenging, to say the least. Facing perpetual unrest and uncertainty in my own walk of faith, dealing with challenging relationships, preparing to buckle down for the VBS (which was happening the very next week), and on top of that, going through literal crisis in family (which I cannot even begin to describe in any detail). I had been left with a new understanding of what it means to feel hopeless, numb, emotionally calloused. I felt so tired that I had a hard time feeling anything but the occasional anxiety and fear over the situation going on with my family.
For a while, everything seemed so inescapable. The oncoming struggles just seemed to never end. I tried to keep my head on straight, and stay calm for the sake of doing my job and helping prepare for VBS; at least that way I had tasks to occupy my mind so that I could escape my own wandering imagination of how things will all turn out.
I know this sounds like an awful story, however, thank God, this isn’t a story of defeat, it’s a story of how Love perseveres and prevails, and God remains victorious over the troubles of this world every time. I am happy to report that God sent armies after me amidst that chaos. He called his people who Love me, and I them, and they were willing to respond: They reached out to me, lamented with me, and prayed with me. They did not turn their face away from me simply because my disaster and sadness was too much to bear. Then, the weekend just before VBS, it was made possible for one of my dearest friends from Whitworth to come and visit me. During his visit, there was much fun, and joy, and laughter (God’s greatest pain relievers). That friend was able to physically stand there with me, in the face of all the misfortune, anguish, and hardship, and he was able to remind me of God’s faithfulness. I was reminded of how the story always ends for those who trust in the Lord, even amidst a severely troubled world. I not only maintained stability enough to work VBS, but I would say that when I needed it most, I received a “peace that passes understanding” and was able to deliver the gospel, and pass on that great Love to the children who attended VBS. God’s timing is perfect, and the fact was, that even as the storm was coming to full fruition before my eyes, God was already on the move. And here I stand, still facing all the same catastrophic pains and troubles, and thinking “What do those matter? My gaze has shifted to face an even greater King of the world.”
“In this world you will have many troubles, but take heart, for I have overcome the world.”