Ann Voskamp writes, sometimes the most painful chapters of our lives – are the most meaningful chapters of our lives. Suffering doesn’t have to destroy our ultimate purpose, but can ultimately achieve our purpose in life. Suffering quietly begs us to surrender so we can win a greater wisdom, a deeper strength, a closer intimacy.
Jesus says we will face hard stuff; there’s no getting around it.
But God’s glory shines brightest in the dark.
What if we started looking at the hardships with eyes of faith? What if we faced them head on with hope? Believing we’ll see His glory in ways we never have?
There was one moment in our adoption journey when God’s glory shined brighter than ever. I had the privilege of going to the doctor with our birth mother for the gender reveal sonogram. As I sat and held the hand of the young woman who would give me an unbelievably precious gift, I heard the holy spirit whisper, This adoption is about so much more than you becoming a mother; it’s about sharing my love with this girl.
A girl who was scared and lonely. A girl facing her own dark places.
We are called to reflect His glory even when we can’t see past the darkness.
2 Corinthians 4:6 says: For God, who said, ‘Let light shine out of darkness,’ made his light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of God’s glory displayed in the face of Christ.
Then there was me. I was already in love with the baby boy I was looking at on the sonogram screen. I was overcome with love and joy, but deep down there was still fear. Fear that it wouldn’t work out. Fear that his birth mom would change her mind. But I didn’t let go of her hand. I prayed for God’s will to be done.
We are called to reflect His glory even when we’re afraid and all hope seems lost.
2 Corinthians 4:16-17 says: Therefore we do not loose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all.
Are you walking through a time of darkness? Does all hope seem lost?
The Dark Places Drive Us Closer to Jesus.
Without the hard places, our faith would be weak. We are able to grasp His grace in a way like never before. The challenges change us.
James 1:2-4 says: Consider it a sheer gift, friends, when tests and challenges come at you from all sides. You know that under pressure, your faith-life is forced into the open and shows its true colors. So don’t try and get out of anything prematurely. Let it do its work so that you may become mature and well developed, not deficient in any way.
When we are smack-dab in the middle of the mess; we must remember 2nd Corinthians 5:7: It’s what we trust in but don’t see yet that keeps us going.
Where will you place your trust today?
***Join me for Part 3 of What the Hard Stuff Teaches Us on Friday.***