10 Things I’ve Learned in the Darkest Times

 

  1. It’s easy to say you trust God when everything is going fine. The real test isn’t in declaring your faith but in living it when everything is falling apart.
  2. The true test of one’s faith is the ability to stay connected to God despite how far away He seems. You learn to separate how you feel from what you know to be true.
  3. Choosing to remain silent when everything inside you wants to scream about the injustice, the struggle, the wrongs…is like trying to restrain a mother who sees her child run into the street. You have to fight like mad to resist the urge.  You may not stop the mother but you can stop the tongue.
  4. It takes a lot of effort to be able to catch just a glimpse of good in the middle of difficult and painful circumstances. To believe there is a flicker of light at the end of a very long and dark tunnel can feel like an insurmountable task.  But it takes just a little light to dispel the darkness.
  5. The impossible is called that because it’s just not possible. Yet God tells us to believe in the very thing that can’t be—which means we have to redirect our thoughts from how things appear to what they can become.  It’s more than just wishful thinking…it’s knowing that God is able to do more than we could ever imagine.
  6. When clearly wronged, forgiveness becomes a real battle of the heart and mind. If we try to fight it on our own, we’ll lose.  Victory can only happen when we put the wrong in His hands and patiently allow Him to work in our hearts.
  7. Loving the unlovable isn’t a real test of your character until that person has caused you true heartache and grief. It’s more than dealing with an ornery person who rubs you the wrong way.  It’s turning the other cheek when that person has intentionally or maliciously purposed to make your life difficult.  This often exposes the icky side of your character but at the same time, gives God a chance to refine it.
  8. Uncertainty leaves no grounds for trust. Yet even when we don’t know what to expect, we have to trust that God has it under control.  Our world may seem out of control but nothing catches Him by surprise and nothing, NOTHING is too difficult for Him to handle.  He already knows the end of our unwritten story.
  9. Surrender is more than just giving up a bad habit. Or making a promise to read the Bible more often.  It’s giving up everything you thought you wanted, thought you knew and thought you understood.  It’s sacrificing ideals, dreams and ambitions.  It’s releasing the grasp you’ve had on a person or circumstance.  It’s letting go of every expectation and saying, “God, do with this what you want…even if it hurts.  Even if I don’t understand.”
  10. Contentment is more than just dealing with a little discomfort. It’s being in a place you don’t want to be and yet finding a way to make the most of it.  Even when it hurts.  Even when you hate it.  Even when it doesn’t make sense.  It brings you to a place of desperation, where you have nothing else but God…and that my friend, is the best place to be.
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