The Storms, Part 2

Last time I talked about keeping our eyes and hearts turned upon Jesus as we walk through life, especially during the storms of life.  We all have storms we will go through, some more intense than others, some more outwardly visible than others, but I want to encourage you today that those storms are not without purpose.

“If He brings you to it, He’ll bring you through it.”  He will bring you through and do a lot more than bring you through it.  He changes you through it.  We don’t go through pain and struggle for no reason or purpose.  His purpose is to change us, to birth us into a likeness of Him, into who He created us to be AND to show us who He is, to show us how we can trust Him, to show us that He is who He says He is and He will do what He said He would.  It may get intense and hard to deal with, but then He brings that truth about that sets us free, and that is when the relief, the peace comes.

My dad once told me, during a very sad time in my life, that God never wastes a hurt and I know it to be true!  The struggles we go through are not there to hurt us or cause us pain.  There’s a purpose behind the struggles we face.  I know this because I see it happen over and over in my life.  Every time I go through a storm, I come out on the other side changed, many times more in love with Jesus than I was before that storm because through the storm, He showed me something about Himself and confirmed that He loves me and that He is indeed trustworthy.

Let me share with you briefly just a couple of the storms in my life that God has used to grow me closer to Him.  Several years ago, my husband and I experienced a miscarriage.  We lost a sweet, precious little girl at 16 weeks in the womb.  My God did not waste that hurt.  Through that time, He showed me He loved me.  He showed me He could indeed give me joy in the midst of my pain.  He showed me He cared.

I have off and on struggled with depression, but about 2 years ago, just shortly after the birth of our most recent child, I experienced a struggle with a postpartum depression that felt like it was going to destroy me.  BUT my God did not waste that hurt, that storm.  He showed me He wouldn’t let me go.  He showed me how to train my eyes on Him and cling to the truths in His Word even when everything I felt inside said otherwise.  He showed me He would be my Deliverer.  He showed me how to make deliberate choices to believe the truth and not the lies no matter how I felt.  He showed me how to act on His truths, to put action to His truths in place of wallowing in a lie.

Through so many of the struggles in my life, He’s called me closer to Him.  He’s shown me more of Himself.  He brings me closer and closer to Him.  He teaches me how to turn my eyes on Him and let Him work.  He teaches me that He loves me and that this life is about bringing Him glory and that He can turn even truly awful circumstances around for His glory.  He’s taught me how to become more dependent on Him and less on myself and others in my life.  He’s used the struggles in my life to call me into a deeper relationship with Him that is truly my own and not based on anyone else’s relationship.  He’s used the struggles to show me how much He loves me and cares for me and desires for me to spend time with Him.  He’s shown me how crucial, how important it is to stay focused on Him, to take the time to be still and quiet before/with Him, to hear from Him.  So many great blessings have come from the storms/struggles in this life.

Please know that whatever storms you are going through or whatever future ones you may have to face and even those past storms, God can use those to bring about good.  “And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.”  (Romans 8:28)  He loves us enough to do that.  We live in a fallen world which means we deal with imperfection on a daily basis which then means we will have struggles to go through, but we serve a God who loves us enough to bring purpose to even those painful storms so we don’t have to go through those things with nothing to show for it on the other side.

God is a God of redemption.  He redeems us.  He redeems our struggles.

Resting in His promises,

Julie