"We wait in hope for the Lord; He is our help and our shield." - Psalm 33:20 NIV
Most of us are familiar with the saying, "when it rains, it pours."
When we're going through a hardship in our life, it can often feel like we're being piled on. When being tested deeply, it rarely consists of one challenge. There are often many lessons that seem to heap together, making it feel very overwhelming.
There are many challenges our family has faced this year. My Dad's health took a major tailspin that resulted in us almost losing him. He has yet to fully recover, and often can't remember who my mother and I are.
He requires full time care-taking. While I'm incredibly grateful that the Lord protected my father, my mother and I are still struggling with the reality that this may be the new "normal" for all of our lives- including my Dad.
I've always wanted to have more children with my husband, but health concerns and fiances have been a major roadblock for us. Recently, there has been a heaviness on my heart and final realization that more children might not be part of God's plan for our lives. When other families seem to be blessed and the door seems nailed shut to you, that hurts. Bad.
During this time, I felt like Steve and I just couldn't communicate with each other properly. There was so much misunderstanding, which resulted in lots of hurt feelings for both of us.
I felt like I was losing all the earthly stability I had. For about a week, I felt myself starting to succumb to depression. I really struggled to keep hopelessness and bitterness out of my spirit.
But, then I realized something. Nothing is impossible with God. Living in faith has always left me feeling at peace and happy - regardless of outside influences. What did I have to lose by responding to my challenges with a joyful, faith fueled attitude?
Even if my situation didn't change, God was going to get me through it. And He wouldn't just let me scrape along, He had plans to prosper me in whatever hopeless situation I currently faced.
Whenever I felt weak, I found myself seeking Him in prayer and within His word. I asked Jesus to show me the lessons I needed to learn, to deepen my understanding.
God had restored my marriage (which had been on life support and quickly flatlining) and I knew He had the ability to create miracles out of my current heartbreak.
All of these heartbreaking challenges are designed to cultivate God's character within you and stretch your faith. Difficulty is temporary, but His glory lasts forever!