Staying Hopeful in the Hard Stuff => When Belief Takes Work
For as long as I can remember, I've been a believer in God working in my life. I just knew that He had a plan all along and was going before me, marking my path.
Even when the foundation shook beneath me as a little girl, hope came easily after wading through the divorce of my parents and seeing that God could be fully trusted in every detail of my story and theirs.
Fast forward to doing life with my own family where hard times come and go and God is still present and dependable.
It was in the middle of a very difficult season of waiting on God to reveal His relocation plan for my own family of 7, that my faith was exercised more than ever before.
My man of 20 years and I worked SO hard to stay focused, make memories, work as a team, and hold on to hope for the blessing we believed was "just around the corner".
But you know how that goes... one corner turns to the next and then a leads to a long straight-away with no end in sight. It was an adventure of total faith and required us to sell out to surrender.
Isn't it rough when we trust but we actually get burned out from believing so hard?
Our struggle was partly because it was pouring rain for months and we were living squished in a motor home (although such a blessing and had its hilarious moments) - but mostly because our hope was running on empty with a capital E.
I trusted in the God who called us out of our cozy ministry full of loved ones and our beautiful home…but I didn’t know how to find joy every single day during that journey, like I wanted too. You know the times when we are determined to feel good, do good, and be good - but we fail?
Well, the tension grew as our fun, free-spirited selves were running on literal fumes. Sometimes (okay everyday) we avoided the hard conversations and checking in on each other grew to a minimum because…SO much over the top hard stuff!
I am not proud of the moments where we lost our focus and the strong faith we ventured out with, started to give way to fear. I am forever proud of how we held on tight and did not give up.
- Fear lies to us and says we are failures.
- Fear pushes us around and paralyzes us.
- Fear asks the question, "what if?".
Maybe your hard season includes a crazy transition like ours. It may be that you are trying to live hopeful in your;
or your friendships...but it all feels so overwhelming.
My husband likes to remind me that we have an enemy…and its not each other! He’s right - we have an adversary who does not want families to thrive in hard seasons at all - especially when we are walking in obedience!
"For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places." - Ephesians 6:12
The devil was in hot pursuit of Gods beautiful plan for us and there were times when that voice was turned up. I had to choose to dismiss the lies and the fear and surrender once again to the love of my God, full of promise, truth, and hope.
When we say yes to Him, we say yes to hard moments that yield tremendous growth.
"The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still." - Exodus 14:14
But the best newsflash, is that we have the power of the Living God within us when we chose to trust in the work of Jesus on the cross and His resurrection from death to life! There is nothing that causes the enemy to slither back into his hole, like calling on Jesus for help and claiming hope!
"Be strong and let your heart take courage, All you who hope in the Lord." - Psalms 31:24
We came out of that rough patch stronger (because you always grow through a trial) and regained hope in the testimony of His faithfulness.
Sometimes we have to experience our desperate need for Jesus to carry us in the unknowns, before we can really make it to the other side shining brightly right?
Are you in a hard season where the road seems to never end? *Sigh* I hear you...
- When fear sets up camp - kick that junk out. Remember that there the real growth and purpose is in the journey, not just the destination.
- When you hear the lies of the enemy, fight back with truth. Pick one of the verses above and write it out over and over, so you can say it out loud and push the enemy back into hiding.
- Go ahead and call your hard season what it is... HARD! Then make a list of the ways God has given you glimpses of hope in the midst of it.
I have found that the roads with the deepest potholes... the ones that almost blow out your tires? Those roads seem to be the ones with the views worth traveling.
Hold on to hope my friends and if you want...there are 2 ways you can join the Brave Moms Strong Families challenge.