October 27, 2017
Overcoming the Troubles of This World
We hope you are enjoying the Girlfriends in God daily devotions. We (Mary, Sharon, and Gwen) would like to introduce you to some of our special friends. From time-to-time, the Friday devotions will be written by one of our friends in ministry. We call them our “Friday Friends.” So grab your Bible and a fresh cup of coffee and drink in the words from our “Friday Friend,” Erin Odom.
In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world (John 16:33, NIV).
Friend to Friend
God doesn’t promise us a life of health, wealth, and prosperity. To the contrary, Jesus told His disciples that in this world we would have trouble. But He didn’t stop there: He reminded them that He overcame the world.
Several years ago, my family walked through a period of extreme financial frustration. Month after month, we saw our savings dwindle and our bank account diminishing. We felt like we were barely surviving financially, emotionally, and even spiritually at some points.
But it was during that troublesome and turbulent time that God pointed us to Himself and the promise that He has overcome the world—despite the troubles we encounter in it. He also showed us very clearly that He is the Great Provider of all our needs. No, we will not have perfect, trouble-free lives on this earth, but God has promised to provide exactly what we need, when we need it. His provision might not always look like we would imagine or what we would pick out for ourselves, but it’s exactly what He knows is best.
I clearly remember when there seemed to be no light at the end of the tunnel. I thought life would never get better. We would never be able to breathe. And we would always barely be making it.
The humility of our season of trouble brought me face-to-face with real need, and real provision. More than anything, our time in the tunnel tuned our hearts to God’s. We failed to acknowledge or appreciate the Lord’s provision when it seemed we were meeting all of our own needs, when we had enough money for excess. But when every penny counted, when our budget never made sense on paper, when we had cents instead of dollars in our bank account at the end of the month, that was when we learned that only God is the provider of all of our needs.
Are you there now, friend? You don’t see a way out. Hope is dim. There is no light. Are you stumbling around in the fog? Is the tunnel still dark?
Romans 8:37 says “In all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us.”
Yes, we will have trouble in this world, but, through Him, we can overcome them.
With the right attitude and perspective, we can look back on a season of troubling times as some of the most faith-building days of our lives.
Dear Lord, You never pretended that we wouldn’t have trouble in this world, but You left us with the promise that You have overcome the world. Help us to recognize your provision—whether it is financial, emotional, or spiritual provision—in our lives. Lead us to worship You during difficult seasons, and teach us that, through You, we can overcome whatever challenges we face each day.
In Jesus’ Name,
Now It’s Your Turn
Today, when you are tempted to get frustrated at circumstances beyond your control, think back to how Jesus warned us that we would have trouble in this world. Thank Him for overcoming the world, and pray that He can help you do the same.
More from the Girlfriends
Erin Odom is the founder of The Humbled Homemaker, a blog dedicated to grace-filled living designed to equip and encourage mothers in the trenches. Erin and her husband, Will, live in the South where they raise their four children.
Erin’s new book, More Than Just Making It: Hope for the Heart of the Financially Frustrated, is part memoir, part practical how-to that reads like a novel. Are you struggling with contentment or even stuck in a cycle of financial frustration? You’re not alone. In More Than Just Making It, Erin Odom tells the story of her family’s breaking point, as well as their comeback. It took hard work, creativity and faith in God’s provision to reset their bank account as well as their hearts. You can do the same. Learn how to rise above your circumstances with money-saving tips, and reimagine the good life as God designed it, outside the myth of the American Dream.
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