2 Corinthians 1: 9 (NLT) In fact, we expected to die. But as a result, we learned not to rely on ourselves, but on God who can raise the dead.
1. Paul just wrote how they were “crushed and completely overwhelmed” when they went through the province of Asia.2. Their pain helped them gain a better understanding of how they should have relied on God instead of themselves.
3. The “worst” case scenario was death, and even then God is there too to raises the dead.
Whether I suffered pain due to my mistakes or when I followed God, He has never left me. Looking back at my darkest moments, I realize the pain could have been reduced if I relied on God instead of myself. Nothing happens without God’s permission. There are no coincidences. Everything happens for His purpose, His glory, and it is not about me. He has replaced my pain with testimonies.
It is easy to have faith when you are not in the storm. It is through the endurance God has provided me that makes it easier for me to see Him in the storm. Like Paul, I am learning to rely solely upon Him.
I agree with Rick Warren who wrote, “God never wastes a hurt!” I had an opportunity to talk with a man who lost his job, couldn’t support his family, and felt like a complete failure. I also spoke with a man who just lost his wife of 50 plus years. God prepared me to be able to relate to both men. He prepared me so that I could listen with a compassionate heart. He prepared me so that He could speak through me. I too lost my job and felt like a failure at one time. The time I spoke to the man who lost his wife, my dad had just pasted away. While in the throes of my deepest and darkest storms, I can still hear His voice say, “I’m not through yet.”
Loving and always present Father. You have never left me. You have always loved me and heard my cries. You heard me when I cried out, “Where are you?” I didn’t fully really realize how much you loved until I saw you in the storm. Fill me with your spirit so that all the hurt, resentment, guilt, and shame no longer remain. I surrender all to you. The battle is yours and not mine. Do with me what you want, I am yours. In your name I pray, Amen.
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