When Life Hurts, Part 2
3Send out your light and your truth; let them lead me; let them bring me to your holy hill and to your dwelling! 4Then I will go to the altar of God, to God my exceeding joy, and I will praise you with the lyre, O God, my God. 5Why are you in cast down, O my soul, and why are you in turmoil within me? Hope in God; for I shall again praise him, my salvation and my God. —Psalm 43:3-5
Okay, so the first step in dealing with pain in life is to not be surprised by it. What’s the second?
Don’t Lose Hope. David’s peace came from realizing that ultimately hope comes from an external source—an eternal one. As long as we look within for healing, or limit it to the horizontal plane of flesh and blood, we will always find ourselves coming short of the help and hope God has granted us through Christ.
Last summer our car had a problem where the entire electrical system would go down. Driving at night from Orlando to Houston—the lights and everything on the car would go dark. What did we do? We took it to someone who knew cars: a mechanic. And as in the case of humanity, there’s been a “manufacturer’s recall” that few have cared to bother with until a breakdown forces us to go to the One who can fix our brokenness.
If you’re there right now, and you’re in a world of hurt, don’t miss this point:
When our plans are interrupted, when we are tempted to become overwhelmed with despair, God reminds us that He is there, He is listening, and He offers hope in whatever we are dealing with.
I’ve always found great comfort and encouragement in Hebrews 4:16, “Therefore let us draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.” Time of what? In our time of need. For those who feel unworthy or uncertain about whether God would accept us and help us, remember we can come “with confidence . . . in time of need.”
Perhaps a season or situation that has caused a breakdown in your life might actually be an opportunity for a breakthrough spiritually. It could be a time to recognize that our bodies and physical lives were not built to last, but built instead as temporary dwellings for our eternal life.
And whether it is David, Paul, Moses, or Christ, the Bible has been given to us that through its pages we might find powerful, practical, and enduring hope. As we read in Romans, “For whatever was written in former days was written for our instruction, that through endurance and through the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope” (Romans 15:4).
Don’t be surprised. Don’t lose hope. —Joel Anderson
· When was a time I lost hope in a trial? Did I feel God’s presence in it?
· Is there something I doubt about God that causes me to lose hope?
Prayer – Dear Father, I’m in “time of need” right now. There are things in my life that literally feel like they are tearing my heart in two. Remind me, Lord, that Your Word says that You are there in my need and pain. Help me to believe that. In Jesus’ name, Amen.