Sometimes life is simply overwhelming. One lays awake long into the night and wonders why the Lord would allow situations of struggle into the lives of families that are so obviously in love with Him, striding to the right thing, and are in His service.
If one is not careful, the overwhelming thoughts of anger and bitterness can quickly arise as these same situations spin out of our control and leave us awake struggling to understand. Thus a vicious cycle can begin.
The events of life lately have reminded me of verses in the New Testament that I never quite understood and still grapple with…
“1 Peter 4:13 Instead, be very glad—for these trials make you partners with Christ in his suffering, so that you will have the wonderful joy of seeing his glory when it is revealed to all the world.”
Be glad in the trials? Are you kidding me? This verse would seem to indicate that those preachers of the prosperity gospel that promise your best life now, are liars. We have been called to suffer right along side Him, and that suffering may not take on the form of a cross and nails. It may take on the form of overwhelming loss, or stress, or concern for one that you hold dear. It may be grieving for a soul that is so far from the Light.

“The things we try to avoid and fight against – tribulation, suffering and persecution – are the very things that produce abundant joy in us. Huge waves that would frighten the ordinary swimmer produce a tremendous thrill for the surfer who has ridden them. “We are more than conquerors through Him” IN all these things – not in spite of them, but in the midst of them. A saint doesn’t know the joy of the Lord in spite of tribulation, but because of it. Paul said “I am exceedingly joyful in all our tribulation”. Oswald Chambers, My Utmost for His Highest (Rom 8:37, 2 Cor 7:4)

I believe that the trials, the long sleepless nights, the trials that make us so weary, are to simply draw us in…to focus our eyes not on the storm but on the One who controls it. To lean in and cry out “I cannot do it on my own, I am not in control, I need You, I need your help.”

Oh that I might be able to cling to the promises of Him that are faithful and true. “When I am overwhelmed I go to the Rock that is higher than I. Ps. 62” in the words of Charles Spurgeon. “Your sorrow itself shall be turned into joy. Not the sorrow to be taken away, and joy to be put in its place, but the very sorrow which now grieves you shall be turned into joy. God not only takes away the bitterness and gives sweetness in its place, but turns the bitterness into sweetness itself.”

Last night when tired and weary and searching for an answer, I was reminded that He inhabits the praise of His people. I found this new song and remembered that I could turn my overwhelmed feelings over to Him and exchanged it for a lighter burden and he would carry mine..Matthew 11:30.

I’m Overwhelmed by your love
Your amazing love, for me.
I never will understand why you chose to be my friend.
Oh I will not forget the price You paid with love on Calvary.

Amazing love, amazing grace, I am overwhelmed with gratitude and praise
And I will rejoice and fall on my knees, lift up my voice, a love song I will sing…
Serenade of sweet worship to you my King.

For those of you in the battle know you are loved and being held up in prayer. Read the last chapter…WE WIN! Love you!

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